• "Barbara & Robby, I am so sorry about your dad! Love you..."
    - Holly (Wright) Smith
  • "Barbara, Joe, Devin & Katie, John was a good, kind and..."
    - Carol McCartney
  • "Our sincere condolences to the family. John was such a..."
  • "RIP John. To Barbara and Rob I pray for only happy..."
    - Nancy Summers
  • "Uncle John, you will be forever missed, my boys loved all..."
    - Debbie Kyle & Liam Gilligan


LAKELAND - John Joseph Cornelius, Jr., of Lakeland, FL, went home to be with the Lord on Thursday, May 10, 2018. He passed peacefully at Tampa General Hospital with wife Linda, daughter Barbara Bennett, and nephew and wife Tony and Lisa Sparacino at his side.
John was born July 20, 1943, in Mineola, NY, to parents Mary and John Joseph Cornelius, Sr.
Survivors include his beloved wife Linda, cherished daughter and son-in-law, Barbara and Joseph Bennett, adored granddaughters Devin and Katie Bennett of Lakeland, sister Gloria (Tom) Camp of New Jersey, many nieces and nephews, and many other dear friends. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his sisters Marion Rossi and Linda Marchello of St. Petersburg, FL.
After his early years on Long Island, NY, he became a Lakeland resident in 1973. He began a long and varied career in the automotive and RV industries. For over 25 years, John was passionate about providing non-profit charitable support for the forgotten senior citizens of Polk County. Anyone who met John quickly learned of his infectious love for classic cars and hot rods, about his love and happiness with Linda, and about his thankfulness to God for life itself. He loved Saturday nights with Linda and his hot rods at Old Town. His skill and expertise regarding hot rods and classic cars were highly recognized and rewarded by the hot rod community. He was a long-time member of NHRA and NSRA. He never hesitated to share his knowledge with anyone, nor did he hesitate to help anyone in a time of need. He was larger than life and enjoyed everything that he did. He was humble, kind and loving and a true and loyal friend.
Having received a heart transplant in 2003, he was truly thankful to the Lord for giving him a second chance at life. He made each and every day count.
All are invited to a Memorial time for John to be held on Thursday, June 7, 2018, 6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. at Crestview Baptist Church Fellowship Hall, 615 Old Polk City Rd, Lakeland, FL, 33809.

Published in Ledger from May 17 to May 18, 2018
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