John D. Stripling: March 12, 2018

Published 2:02 pm Tuesday, March 13, 2018

AMERICUS, Ga. —John D. Stripling Jr., age 86, of Perfect Care, Americus, passed away on Monday, March 12, 2018. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, March 15, 2018, at Central Baptist Church with the Dr. Bryan Myers and the Rev. Hugh DeLoach officiating. Visitation will be held one hour prior to service beginning at 10 a.m. A private burial will follow in Sunset Memorial Gardens. Active pallbearers will include Jimmy Faircloth, Garrett Faircloth, Scott Barry, Jay Duke, John Kelley and Randy Dillard. Employees and former employees of Sumter Electric Membership Corporation and all Masons and Shriners are asked to serve as honorary pallbearers.

A native of Macon, “Strip” was born April 29, 1931, to J. D, Stripling Sr. and Marie Cantley Stripling. He moved to Americus at the age of 6 and made his home there for the rest of his life. He attended the Americus public schools and graduated from Americus High School where he was an outstanding varsity football player. Following high school graduation, he enlisted in the United States Air Force and served during the Korean War with the 315th Fighter Bomb Wing near Suwon, Korea, rising to the rank of staff sergeant during his enlistment. Upon his return to Americus, he was employed by the Sumter Electric Membership Corporation from which he retired after 34 years of service as a general foreman in 1992. Mr. Stripling was a member of Lee Street United Methodist Church for 53 years.

Strip, as he was known by friends, was a member of M.B. Council Lodge No. 13 for 53 years, a member of the Al Sihah Shrine Center, and member and past president of the Sumter Shrine Club. He was an advisory council member of Thomas G. Bankston chapter Order of DeMolay and received the Cross of Honor for his services. He was a former member and past president of the American Civitan Club and a member of the American Legion. He enjoyed hunting and fishing and in his retirement bird watching in his backyard.

Mr. Stripling is survived by his wife of 58 years Jean Athon Stripling; a son Jay Stripling and his wife Sarah of Cuthbert; brother-in-law Kenny Athon and his wife Cherryl of LaGrange; nieces, Carlene Butler of Opelika, Ala., Judy Sigmon of Newnan, Ga., and Dawn Athon Zielinski of Maple Valley, Wash; nephews, Don King of Opelika, Ala., and Ken Athon Jr. of LaGrange; four special grandchildren, Katie, Jacob, Oliver and Caroline; several great-nieces and -nephews survive as well as great-great-nieces and nephews also survive. In addition to his parents Mr. Stripling was preceded in death by his sister Helen Stripling King of Atlanta.

Flowers will be acceptable, or donations may be made in his memory to Central Baptist Church, Perfect Care, Shriners Children’s Hospital or charity of one’s choice. You may sign the online guest book and share your own special thoughts and memories with the family of Mr. Stripling by visiting Watson-Giddens Funeral Home’s website at

Watson-Giddens Funeral Home of Ellaville, Ga., is in charge of arrangements.