My dad, Johnie E. Baxter, passed away on Friday, June 11, 2010, in Granville, Illinois,
where he and my Mom had lived for about the last 20 years.
A visitation was held at Helmer-Shields Funeral Home in Granville, Illinois, on Sunday evening, June 13, 2010, from 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm. Many local area friends and co-workers were in attendance.
A second visitation waw held at Fowler-Sullivan Memorial Chapel in Neelyville, Missouri, on Wednesday, June 16, 2010 from 10:00 am until just before the funeral service started at about 1:30 pm. In attendance were a whole host of family, many, many friends from across the years and miles, and many fellow Christians. Loving family members came from as far away as Delaware and California.
The Rev. Carlton Johnson, a long time family friend, co-worker, and pastor during the many years Dad lived and built houses in the Naylor area, was the officiating minister. The service began with Rev. Johnson reading Dad's obituary. Then Roger Baxter (myself, Johnie Baxter's son), presented a eulogy telling of his Christ-like life, his fondess of music and especially singing shape note four part harmony, his Christian faith and example, and his unconditional father's love reflecting God's love for each of us.
Next a song that Dad had said was his favorite, Great is Thy Faithfulness, was sung. And then Rev. Carlton Johnson offered his words of condolence, hope and encouragment, and remembrances of working with Dad over the years they had known each other. He ended by reminding us that the true person is spirit, as God is spirit, and that our spirit lives on ... and Dad's spirit is now at peace in his Saviour's care waiting for us to join them one day.
A short grave side service was held at the Eaton Cemetary in the Buncomb community about 6 miles south of Naylor, Missouri. Rev. Johnson gave the family a few words from the Bible giving us affirmation of faith and hope in the resurrection to come. The gathering concluded with personal words from Donnie Fowler (the funeral director) telling of how he knew, respected, and loved Johnie Baxter as a personal friend and fellow Christian believer during the years they had both lived and gone to church in Naylor.
Afterwards many of the family members met at the Taylor State Line Cafe for a late luncheon and to continue their fellowship and renewal of family ties.
For the benefit of those unable to attend, the audio recordings of the funeral service and grave side service are available online.
Additional features on this memorial website include: We have an online photo album with pictures of many of those in attendance, the flowers, etc.; a photo album showing scenes from the life of Johnie E. Baxter; and now there is an online video of him singing and playing shaped note music just about two years ago; plus there is a page where you can send us a note; and where you can send someone else an email notice about this website. Keep on watching this web page for additional features in the coming weeks.
Recently several new features have been added to this memorial website taken from the many papers and books which Johnie Baxter had kept for much of his life. Two versions of his personal Christian testimony written in his own hand were discovered and are included here. The Graduation Program from his 8th grade graduation from the Buncomb school was discovered. Several adult continuing education certificates for courses he took during his life illustrate his life long and often self directed learning process.
Additional free online information on the life and background of Johnie E. Baxter is available with just a click. You can read the free online booklet Paths Traveled Before Us or learn about Mom and Dad's 70th Anniversary Celebration and even see more online videos from links on those pages.
5778 Brookway Drive
Winston Salem, North Carolina 27105-1429 USA