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John's Story

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John Nick Katsorelos, 86, of Newton passed away at 11:40 a.m. Friday, July 7, 2017, at the home of his daughter.
Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Thursday at the First Baptist Church in Newton with the Rev. Steve Willis officiating. Burial will be in the Westlawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Newton with full military rites by the Jasper Post 20 American Legion. Visitation will be held 4-8 p.m. Wednesday at the church with Masonic Rites at 6 p.m. under the auspices of the Newton Masonic Lodge 216. AF & AM. In loving memory of John, memorials may be made to JCCF/ Jasper Outreach. Arrangements are under the care of the Meyer Funeral Home in Newton. The obituary can be viewed
and condolences left at www.meyerfh.com.
John was born Sept. 4, 1930, in Lynchburg, Virginia, to Nick and Ruby
Grace (Camden) Katsorelos. He was baptized into the Greek Orthodox church in Lynchburg. John was one of three siblings, who grew up in Harrisonburg, Virginia. When his father passed away, John was 8 years old, leaving him the "man of the house," working to provide for his family, a mission that he would carry on for the rest of his life. His mother later married Charles Ritchie and they had five more children. While in Harrisonburg, John attended James Madison University and majored in Physics.
John was a Sergeant in the 20th Air Force during the Korean Conflict. He monitored the south China Sea while radar installation crew chief in the 623 Air Control Squadron, at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, Japan. John was awarded airman of the month twice while serving.
While back in the states, John met a very special woman from southeastern Missouri, Marinda Lea Murrell. They were married on Feb. 20, 1955, at Fordland Air Station, Fordland, Missouri. John and "Rin" began their marriage living in Harrisonburg, Virginia, when they had their first child, Anthea. On her first birthday, they moved to Newton, due to a job opportunity. There, they had two more children, Tony and Pam. John remained in the agrochemical business for 45 years. He and Rin also ran Marinda Lea's restaurant and bed and breakfast. He was an avid carpenter and collector of tools. He cherished his English Bulldogs through the years, Winston, Fulton and Chloe. He enjoyed following the activities of his grandchildren and great grandchildren, always supporting their endeavors. John was also known for cooking and providing food for others. He would often deliver cobblers and provide lessons on the Greek and Japanese language to others. John was a mentor and supporter of young children, always recalling the Greek family that mentored him at a young age when his father had passed.
John was a 32nd degree master mason of the Scottish Rite. He was also an
active member of the Jasper County Shrine Club for many years. He was a
member of the Jasper County Unit 1 school board, and President of the Lake Jasper Association for over 40 years. Above all, John cherished his
family. He valued his family and did everything he could to provide for
them. It made him very happy and content to have them near.
John is survived by his three children, Anthea Zumbahlen of Newton, Tony (Robyn) Katsorelos of Huntsville, Alabama, and Pamela (John) Burton of South Lyon, Michigan. He is survived by seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his siblings, Cynia Katsorelos of Richmond, Virginia, Deno (June) Katsorelos of Harrisonburg, Virginia, Shirley (Robert) Moyers of Dayton, Virginia, Ronald (Valerie) Ritchie of Madison Heights, Virginia, Donald (Linda) Ritchie of Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Robert Ritchie of Dayton, Virginia.
John was preceded in death by his parents, Nick Katsorelos, Ruby Ritchie, and Charles Ritchie; his brother, Wayne Ritchie; his wife of 52 years, Marinda (Murrell) Katsorelos; and his son-in-law, John Zumbahlen.
Surely they are together today celebrating in paradise.
Published on July 10, 2017
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