Cover photo for Johnny Sears's Obituary
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1932 Johnny 2021

Johnny Sears

November 17, 1932 — September 5, 2021

Johnny Marion Sears passed away peacefully in his home in Franklin, TN, on Sunday morning, Sept.5, with his son, Jason, at his side. Mr. Sears was 88 years old. John was born on Nov. 17, 1932, to Ada Warf and Walter Eugene Sears, in rural southwestern Williamson County, growing up farming with his father, who also served as a justice-of-the-peace in his community.
John attended college at Middle Tennessee State College, studying Mathematics. There he met the love-and-light of his life, Neuva Sharp of Nashville, whom he wed shortly after his graduation. John and Neuva had 3 children: Michael, Joan and Jason. John was commissioned as a naval officer in 1955, serving first as a meteorological officer, then attending the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA, to earn a master of science in Oceanography.
Retiring after 30 years of service, Captain Sears' most notable achievements included serving as Executive then Commanding Officer of Naval Western Oceanographic Center, Pearl Harbor, and as the Commanding Officer of the Naval Oceanographic Office in Bay St. Louis, MS.
Once retired, John and Neuva embarked upon founding and building the Diamondhead United Methodist Church in MS. They remained passionately involved with its congregation and operations for over 2 decades, even returning after Hurricane Katrina hit their community days later to help others with its aftermath.
Personally, John loved sports of all types, coaching baseball and softball for his children and playing scratch golf most of his life. He loved music, with a special place in his heart for Sissel Kyrkjebé�'s song, "Slow Down."
John loved and cared for his and Neuva's family his entire life, leaving behind a legacy of love and strength, living a Christ-centered life in his every breath, and was glad to have returned to Franklin for his final years on this earth.
John is preceded in death by his son, Mike, his grandson, Seagar, his wife, Neuva, and his older brother, Everett. He leaves behind his daughter, Joan (Pete) Degen, of Haines, AK, his son, Jason (April) Sears of Rabat, Morocco; grandsons Murphy (Erika) Degen of South Jordan, UT, and Michael Forrest (Kaela) Sears of Portland, OR; loving nieces Shirley (David) Waddington, Reba (Wayne) Stinson, Karen (Christian) Lawrence, Pamela (Joe) Hicks, Tracie (Dean) Johnson; nephew Jerry (Melva) Law; great-nieces Becky (Robert) Wood, Shara (Thomas) Hamlett and Ruby Lawrence; nephew Steve Sears and grand-nephew Graham Sears; sister-in-laws Carolyn Hicks and Peggy Sears.
In lieu of flowers, John would have encouraged us to give to a charity such as Navigators, St. Jude's Children's Hospital, or Children's Miracle Network. A memorial scholarship is planned for John and Neuva's alma mater, MTSU.
If desired, cards may be sent to PO Box 278, Haines, AK 99827.
Peace I leave with you...Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
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