Talladega – John L. Granger, 93, ended his life’s journey on Sunday, May 5, 2019, in his home surrounded by his family. Family and friends are invited to share a time of celebration and stories on Tuesday evening, May 7, in the Fellowship Hall at First United Methodist Church between 6:30 pm and 8:30 pm. Visitation will be on Wednesday, May 8, 2019 starting at 10:00 am in the sanctuary of First United Methodist Church followed by a funeral service at 11:00 am with pastor Minnie Bailey officiating.
John leaves to tell his stories four children: Roy (Joyce) Granger, Jeanne (Bill) Perkins, Cathy (Billy) Sparkman, Martha (Russell) Olvera; nine grandchildren: Scott (Stacy) Sparkman, Leslie (Rob) Johnson, Matt (Rebecca Keaton) Perkins, Lauren (Matt) McCook, Christie (Jimmie) Smith, Jennifer (Steve) Widger, John (Mindy) Granger, Chuck Granger, Jake (Molly) Granger; 18 great grandchildren; extended family: Laura and Jim Purdie, Betty and Tom Wimberley, Marlene and Mitch Holloway; and many special nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, John and Ruby Granger; his son, John Charles, and his beloved wife of 65 years, Mary Davis Granger.
John was born in Houston County, Alabama, in 1925. He came to Talladega to enter elementary school at Alabama School for the Blind. At ASB he made life-long friends, played trumpet in Eugene Landreth’s band, and at his death was the longest serving member of the ASB Alumni and Workers Association.
John Granger’s desire in life was to open doors for people who are blind to be able to have meaningful employment and community connections. He began his career at Alabama Industries for the Blind in Talladega. Then he and his family moved to Hazlehurst, Mississippi, where he and his team built Royal Maid Association for the Blind, the national demonstration industry affiliated with National Industries for the Blind.
In 1996, John retired from Royal Maid and he and Mary returned to Talladega where they were active in the First United Methodist Church, the Alumni and Workers Association of Alabama School for the Blind, and Alabama Council for the Blind. John served on the advisory board for the Regional Library for the Blind, and he was appointed to the Board of Trustees for Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind. In 2008, the Board added the name John Granger to the McFaden Industries for the Blind Complex in Talladega.
John had an insatiable curiosity about the world around him and the people with whom he connected. He loved his family, his church community, his friends (both male and female) in the Bad Boys Breakfast Club at Tina’s Homecooking. He traveled extensively in the United States, Europe, Russia, Mexico, and Central America.
John was an avid horseman and for many years rode the trails of Talladega National Forest. His friends and grandsons in the Cheaha Riders Club often created trails where none had existed!
When he could no longer ride, he moved onto working in his wood shop. He loved every aspect of planning and creating new projects from restoring old chairs and refinishing furniture to making stools and birdhouses with his partners Ray, Windell, Roger, Bill, and various other family assistants. At 93, with the help of his daughter Jeanne and son-in-law Bill, John was able to build and distribute his famous log cabin birdhouses.
Dindad, as he was known to his grandchildren, leaves a lasting legacy of how to navigate this world. He greeted each day with humor, enthusiasm, respect and love… and a plan. His family is grateful.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to First United Methodist Church building fund, Alumni and Workers Association of Alabama School for the Blind, or Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind Foundation.
Online condolences may be made at www.usreyfuneralhome.com with Usrey Funeral Home Talladega directing services.