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John  Benjamin Woods

John Benjamin Woods

Monday, February 1st, 1943 - Friday, January 22nd, 2021
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Obituary

John Benjamin Woods
February 1, 1943 - January 22, 2021
John Benjamin Woods was born in the small town of Guin, in Marion County, Alabama, on Monday, February 1, 1943 to Julia Terrell Ramsey and John D. Thomas. John Woods passed away in Huntsville, Alabama on Friday, January 22, 2021, a few days shy of his birthday. John was his mother’s second-born child. He grew up on a farm, and as such, he learned to do everything from milking cows to raising chickens. Regal in bearing, tenacious of spirit, he was a genuine country boy at heart.

John served in the United States Army in his young adult years, during which he had the opportunity to travel afar and visit North Korea. John was a valorous man who protected his country with unyielding integrity. For John, it was “Duty, Honor, Country.” When John’s time in the Army during the Vietnam era came to an end, he was honorably discharged. Every so often, John spoke about his time in the military to his family and told captivating stories. John’s storytelling moments are in fact, some of the fondest memories that his family will treasure for a lifetime.

One of the most salient qualities about John was his perseverance. John had a fierce tenacity that served him well in providing for his family. Often working long hours, John did what he had to do to make ends meet. He was the epitome of hard work and resourcefulness.

An equally vital quality of John was his wisdom. Even in his final years, John’s mind remained as sharp as a tack. With uncanny precision, he was still able to recall the smallest details about people and situations. John passed down his wisdom to his kids and grandkids in the form of candid conversations. A straight-shooter, you would never have to guess what was on his mind, because he unequivocally would tell you. His tough-love approach and his seemingly infinite knowledge undoubtedly had a positive influence on the people that were blessed enough to know him.

Cooking was one of John’s passions and it was the foundation for some of his most cherished memories. In his earlier years, John worked as a cook at the Britling Cafeteria, which billed itself as the “Southern home of Southern cooking,” one of John’s culinary specialties. As it happened, that was where he met his doting wife Glenda Kaye Townsend Woods, who was a waitress. Mutually promising to be true to each other in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, John and Glenda exchanged wedding vows and wedding rings on Saturday, June 28, 1975 at the Taylor’s Chapel Primitive Baptist Church. God blessed their union and love with two daughters: Tonya N. Woods, Esq., and Sonya K. Woods. As time went by, they became the doting grandparents of two granddaughters and two grandsons: Christina, Chauncey, Shauntelle, and Khamari.
John’s passion for cooking shined through in other areas of his life as well. Most notably, John’s sapid and hearty meals brought his family together on Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, and Christmas holidays. On quiet Saturdays, John loved to go fishing, oftentimes bringing along with him his daughters Tonya and Sonya and in later years, his grandson Chauncey. John loved being near water. Unsurprisingly, one of his favorite songs was “Sitting on The Dock of The Bay” by Otis Redding.

A loyal Auburn University fan, John B. Woods loved watching college football games on Saturdays as well. He participated in a long-standing, yet lighthearted rivalry with his two grandsons Chauncey and Khamari, who are both devoted Alabama fans. On many occasions, John watched the Iron Bowl surrounded by his two grandsons and other close family members. These Iron Bowl watch parties brought John immense joy.

Family was paramount to John, and he was deeply devoted to the family that God graciously created for him and blessed him with during his lifetime. He said his wife was his soulmate and often he spoke of his pride for his family. “No matter what, I will always be proud of them, and I will always love them.” One evening, John was in his bedroom staring at the photos on the wall. When his daughter Tonya observed him, she curiously asked him what he was doing. He responded, “Looking at what I started.” Richly rewarded, John possessed true admiration and gratitude for the family that came from his and Glenda’s 45-year union. Though his beginnings were humble, his gifted children and grandchildren were blessed to earn degrees with rigorous and high scholastic achievements and attainment at Alabama A&M University, The University of Pennsylvania, The Vanderbilt University Law School, and Vanderbilt University. During his bedtime prayers, John thanked God for his family name by name as he counted his many blessings one by one.

John Benjamin Woods was predeceased by his mother, Julia Terrell Ramsey; his father, John D. Thomas, and his sister, Merra Kate Woods, and a sister-in-law, Dianne Townsend. John leaves behind his beloved wife, Glenda T. Woods, and his two precious daughters Tonya N. Woods, Esq., and Sonya K. Woods. He is also survived by his siblings: Peggie S. Terrell, Mary F. Clark, Willie Catheren (Bobby) Pamplin, John D. Thomas Jr., and Joy Ann Jones-Haskins. John will be dearly missed by his four grandchildren: Christina L. Woods, Chauncey L. Woods, Shauntelle L. Woods, and Khamari J. Hughes.

Left to cherish his memories are sisters-in-law: Beverly T. Hammonds, Linda Townsend, Dr. Thelma Townsend, and Clara T. Appleton; brothers-in-law: John B. (Frances) Townsend II, Anthony Valarie) Townsend, and Lorenzo D. (Annie) Townsend, Esq., plus a host of nephews, nieces, kith, and kin.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, January 29th, 2021 | 2:00pm - 6:00pm
    When
    Friday, January 29th, 2021 2:00pm - 6:00pm
    Location
    Serenity Funeral Home Chapel
    Address
    2505 University Drive NW
    HUNTSVILLE, AL 35816
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Notes
    Mask are required to be worn.
  • Service

    Saturday, January 30th, 2021 | 11:00am
    When
    Saturday, January 30th, 2021 11:00am
    Location
    Serenity Funeral Home Chapel
    Address
    2505 University Drive NW
    HUNTSVILLE, AL 35816
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Notes
    Mask are required to be worn.
    Officiant
    Dr. Christopher Jermaine Turner
  • Interment

    Location
    Valley View Memorial Gardens
    Address
    139 Meridianville Bottom Road
    MERIDIANVILLE, AL 35750
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email

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