In Loving Memory

10/2/2015, 1:59 p.m.
Johnny Poole Jr., 78, of Sylacauga, Ala., and former longtime resident of Portland, transitioned from this life on Sept. 28, ...
Johnny Poole Jr.

Johnny Poole Jr., 78, of Sylacauga, Ala., and former longtime resident of Portland, transitioned from this life on Sept. 28, 2015 with his beloved wife, Ella, by his side.

Johnny was born on Feb. 4, 1937 in Sylacauga, the son of late Johnny Poole Sr., and Mavis “Love” McKinney Poole. He was the eldest of 10 siblings. On May 17, 1973 he married the love of his life, Ella Poole.

Johnny was no stranger to hard work and he imparted that on all of his children. He was employed at Gunderson in Portland for many years, mastering several positions, before being promoted to a superintendent. In 2002 he hung up his hard-hat and retired, deciding to return to Sylacauga to live out the remainder of his life in the city of his youth. He had always considered Alabama his “true” home, despite having lived all over the United States.

Once he and Ella were settled in Alabama, they adjusted to the tranquility of the rural south. He loved to spend his time riding around the city in his beloved Ford pickup truck, reminiscing about his childhood and the sweet moments he shared with his siblings and cousins. He also loved to stop by to talk to old friends and family. Never short of ambition, he and Ella became proud entrepreneurs when they opened a convenience store, to serve the needs of their community.

Johnny had an intense passion for hunting rabbits and raccoons; he was always on the lookout for another great hunting dog, preferably a Beagle, or the perfect rifle to catch wild game in those Alabama woods. Johnny’s green thumb was enviable! Anyone who knew him could attest to how much pride he took in keeping a well-manicured lawn, especially on 13th and Fremont in northeast Portland. Marigolds, in particular, were his favorite flower that added just the right amount of color to his landscaped masterpiece. Neighbors could not help but stop by and admire his handiwork.

In addition, Johnny loved fishing, collecting cigars, long car rides, spending time with family, and having fervent debates (which he usually won!) Johnny also took a great deal of pride in his appearance, and was always dressed to impress. He refused to go anywhere without a sharp hat and his cologne. His smile could light up a room and he definitely left an impression on everyone he had the pleasure of meeting and debating with.

Johnny was preceded in death by both of his parents; brothers Tommy Poole, Frank “Pop” Poole, and Robert Poole; sisters Thelma Inez Poole, Dorothy Poole, Marie Tucker and Shirley Calhoun; and a grandson Lamar Jaray Hart.

He is survived by his wife; daughters Cynthia (Mark) Washington Sr., Lori (Shawn) Martin and Maria (Joe) Rollins Jr.; grandchildren Quayuana Washington, Lamar D. Martin, Nichole (Ezell) Watson III, Mark Washington Jr., Shawntell Washington, Briana Rollins and Joe Rollins III; great-grandchildren Ariana Jenkins, Alayah Ta, Jayden Ta and Amir Washington; brother Eddie (Diane) Poole; sister Gladys (Richard) Johnson; nieces Sabrina McCain and Annie “Missy” Anderson; nephew Preston Calhoun; cousin Ralph (Mildred) McKinney and a host of other relatives and dear friends who will miss him in this life.

Johnny Poole’s wake will be held on Friday, Oct. 9 at 6 p.m. at the Madden Funeral Home in Sylacauga. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, Oct. 10 at 11 a.m. at St. Thomas United Methodist Church in Sylacauga with the Rev. Dr. Paul Hillard Jr. officiating. His final resting place will be Shiloh Cemetery in Sylacauga.