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John A. Lightner

February 18, 1927 - May 24, 2020

U.S. Veteran

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John A. Lightner, born February 18, 1927, passed away peacefully on Sunday, May 24, 2020, at Pearls of Life Memory Care Center.  He was preceded in death by his first wife of 52 years, Betty, and a beloved son, Daniel.

He is survived by his wife of 17 years, Rose; daughter Kathy Paris of Warrenton, son James Lightner of Lynchburg, son Bill Lightner and his wife, Kathi of Forest; daughter, Linda Davis of Louisa, and daughter-in-law, Patricia Lightner of Bedford; grandchildren David Michael Paris; Bryan Lightner and his wife, Amy; Allison Lightner and Jerett Martin; Benjamin Davis and his wife Stacey, Robert Davis and his wife, Megan, Chelsea Lightner Simmons and her husband, Nick; Jonathan Lightner; and Matthew Vaughan; great-grandchildren Madysen and Blake Lightner; Peyton and Parker Goldstein; Peyton and Jacob Davis; and Autumn and Christopher Davis.

A native of Pennsylvania, John came to Lynchburg from Syracuse, NY in 1958 with Betty and four of his children. His fifth child was born in Lynchburg.

Following Betty’s death in 1999, John married Rose in 2003 and thoroughly enjoyed their merged families which included Rose’s children Rose Anna Marsh, Christy Neas, Bill Oglesby, and Beth Moore, and their children and grandchildren.

John served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II.  He married Betty, graduated from Colgate University, and began his 38-year career with General Electric Company all in 1947.  He served many years as Manager of Marketing Communications for GE in Lynchburg before retiring in 1985.  John was active in numerous Lynchburg civic and business activities including President of the Lynchburg Advertising Club and Chairman of the Shenandoah Chapter of the GE Elfun society.

He was particularly proud of his years as a Scoutmaster and Chairman of the Scouts Central Virginia District.  Following Betty’s good example, he served many years as a volunteer at Lynchburg General Hospital.  He was an active member of Holy Cross Catholic Church, and worked closely with Holy Cross Catholic School after it was relocated to Langhorne Road in the early 1960’s

John enjoyed years of fishing and camping with his family, especially running his own boat to catch marlin and sailfish in the Gulf Stream off Cape Hatteras most often with his son, Dan.

The family will have a private graveside service.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution to the Alzheimer’s Association, 3831 Old Forest Road, Suite 7, Lynchburg, VA 24504.

Tharp Funeral Home & Crematory, Lynchburg, is assisting the family.

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