Born in 1923 in Criglersville, Madison County, Virginia, John Henry Jr
lived there until 1941 when he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps.
On Feb 16 1943 he enlisted in the Army to take part in WW II. He met his
future bride Mary Elizabeth Bell while stationed in California as a
Supply Sergeant. They were married on May 11, 1944 in Yuma Arizona.
Once John Henry Jr was discharged from military service on Feb 7, 1946,
the couple eventually moved to the Washington, DC area and started their
family. John Henry Jr. then held a number of jobs before entering
government service again in 1954 as a member of the United States
Special Police. He retired from the Federal Protective Service as a
Captain in 1985 after 34 total years of government service. In that same
year he divorced and remarried moving to Florida where he would live for
the next 22 years with Louise his second wife.
John Henry Jr received his calling to the Ministry in 1954 and was a
minister in the AME Zion Church for over 40 years. He served as
Assistant Pastor to both Rev. Raymond E. Stephens and Rev. Frederick W.
Barnes at Contee AME Zion Church NE Washington, DC from 1954 until
1966 and was the pastor of two Varick Memorial AME Zion churches one in
Anacostia, NE Washington, DC (1966 until 1985) and the other in
Jacksonville FL (1986 – 1999). He retired from being an active pastor in
1999 but he accepted the role of Presiding Elder and Pastor Emeritus for
the next several years.
John Henry Jr as a self educated man stressed education to his children
constantly. He did not have the chance to finish high school as a young
man but later in life he returned and achieved a milestone in his life
by attaining his high school diploma. He always demanded excellence in
effort from all his children but more importantly, from himself.
John Henry Jr was a steadfast and devout believer in family and he will
be missed by everyone who knew and loved him. In an age when duty,
honor, commitment and responsibility have lost so much meaning, John
Henry Jr will be remembered, and appreciated for his tireless labors,
intense dedication to providing for his children a better life than he
had led himself, and his genuine desire to see all those around him
succeed. As for himself, his hard work and perseverance saw his children
achieve great things much to his delight and satisfaction, in the forms
of college degrees, professional status, or as skilled tradesmen. John
Henry Jr touched so many lives in his passage through this life that
there are just too many names for us to mention them individually.
People knew John Henry Jr as a pastor, spiritual leader, guide, mentor,
counselor, father figure, role model, provider, family member and yes
not the least of all, a friend.
Obituary For John Henry Arrington Jr.
2008 Greeting to His Children and Grand Children:
2008 Greeting to His Children and Grand Children: (Continued)