John Millard Jeffs, Lt. Col., US Army (Retired) age 78 of Morgantown, passed away Sunday morning, September 30, 2012 at his home after a long & courgaeous battle with cancer.
John was born March 29, 1934 in Kent to the late Newell John and Gladys (Martin) Jeffs. During his childhood, his family moved from farm to farm following available work. He often attended several schools in a single year. When his mother insisted that they settle down they did so in Lebanon, where John attended Lindbergh grade and the city's junior and senior high schools.
In high school he was a drummer in the Tiger Band and lettered in football. John enjoyed telling his family that the game he played was in leather helmets with no facemasks. Cuts, bruises and concussions were frequent, adding that his first play resulted in a collision that knocked both him and the other team's player unconscious. John declined a scholarship to play in college, enlisting in the Indiana National Guard after his graduation from Lebanon High School in 1952.
Training first in artillery and then finance, his career included service as commanding officer of units at the Lebanon and Tyndall Armories, aide to the Indiana Adjutant General, deputy commander for Camp Atterbury, and Supervisor Auditor for Internal Review, United States Property and Fiscal Office overseeing resources of the Indiana National Guard.
John retired after 30 years with the rank of lieutenant colonel. Mr. Jeffs owned a laundry and dry cleaning business in Greenfield, Ind., and was a courier for Special Dispatch in Indianapolis.
He married Diane Rhode, July 4, 1999, she and his brother Wallace Jeffs (Bettye) of Nineveh, survive.
Mr. Jeffs is also survived by children from a previous marriage to the former Nancy Newkirk Jeffs. They are Robt. (Alma), Tom (Heidi), Joe (Sandi), all from Indiana; and Ryan (Erin Benson) and Lisa (Eric) Titmas from Arizona. He leaves 8 grandchildren, Angela, Amy, John, Anne, Allie, Kelsey, Geoff, and Becky and 9 great grandchildren, James, Daniel, Robt., Michael, Mary, Katelyn, Adam, Marcus and Lucas.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his infant brother Roger James Jeffs.
Family and friends will gather for a celebration of John's life at Meredith-Clark Funeral Home Cremation & Personalization Center, 179 E. Mulberry Street in Morgantown, on Friday, October 5, from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. with a memorial service conducted by Rev. Wallace Jeffs at 3:00 pm. Military rites will be presented by the Martinsville American Legion & Veterans of Foreign Wars Honor Guards.
In lieu of flowers, the Jeffs family request memorial donations to be sent in honor of John to the Indiana National Guard "Relief Fund" 55 Monument Circle Suite 800, Indianapolis, IN 46204.
Condolences to the Jeffs family can be made at www.meredith-clark.com