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John W. Grisham

September 28, 1931 ~ February 15, 2024 (age 92) 92 Years Old
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John Grisham Obituary

John W. Grisham, age 92 passed away Thursday, February 15, 2024, at his daughter’s home in Perry, IL. He was born September 28, 1931, in Milwaukee, WI to William and Caroline Albrecht Grisham. John married Wava Aiken June 18, 1955, and she preceded him in death February 10, 2020.

John was a graduate of Pittsfield High School and graduated from Washington University with his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from Webster College in St. Louis. In March 1951, John enlisted in the United States Navy serving his country until his honorable discharge February 1955 and was a proud Korean War veteran. During John’s senior year the school was hosting the incoming 9th graders. A girl caught his eye and he said to the guy next to him, “she is going to be a looker”.  His name was Jim and he said, “that’s my sister, Wava”. John soon left to join the Korean War and returned 4 years later. One day he stopped at the pharmacy to get a soda and the waitress was none other than Wava and she said, “I’ve been waiting for you to come home” and the rest was history! Over the years he worked for Alexander Lumber Company, Central Hardware, Brown Shoe Company, vice president of Samuel Shoe Company, IRS Area Manager and Pike County Assessor. John gave his time and assistance to many local community organizations including duties as treasurer of VFW, board member and treasurer of Pittsfield Public Library, American Legion and Pike County Housing Board. He was an avid reader and loved spending time with the staff at our local library. John enjoyed racquetball, watching westerns and historical documentaries on WWI, WWII, Korean War and Vietnam and listening to Frank Sinatra. He remained active throughout his lifetime, walking 4 miles daily at the armory in Hannibal while friends played pickleball, after which they would meet for breakfast or lunch. One of his greatest joys was eating Wava’s wonderful home cooked meals, especially Rueben sandwiches and smothered steak with mashed potatoes and gravy. His greatest joy was his family, John will be remembered as a loving and caring father, grandfather, uncle and friend. He was always a gentleman and dapper dresser from head to foot and completed with his warm smile. Our hearts are broken, and the pain feels unbearable but at the same time we feel so very blessed to have had this man in our lives that we loved so much.

John is survived by son, Mark (Emily) Grisham of Ave Maria, FL; daughters, Linda Lanzone and Cindy (Jim Butler) Lumpkin of Perry, IL; grandchildren, Tony (Lisa) Lanzone, Deana Zimmerman, Clayton Grisham, Brandon Grisham, Ryan (Kezia) Lumpkin and Nichole Lumpkin; great grandchildren, Tony (Leila) Lanzone, Jr., Jonathan (Jenna) Lanzone, Andrew Lanzone, Nathan Lanzone, Elliana Lanzone, Joshua Lanzone, Isabella Lanzone, Lucas Lanzone, Ryan Rushing, Dominic (Amanda) Zimmerman and Vincent Zimmerman; and great great grandchildren, Mila Lanzone, Stella Lanzone, Ezra Lanzone and Elias Lanzone.

He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Caroline Grisham; wife of 64 years, Wava Grisham; and sister and brother-in-law, Betty (Joe) Jordan.

Cremation rites have been accorded and Celebration of Life will be held at a later date with burial at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis. Memorials are suggested to be made to Pittsfield Public Library. Online condolences may be left to the family at www.nieburfh.com. Niebur Funeral Home in Pittsfield is handling the arrangements.

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