Johnnie Carroll Shappley died on Saturday, January 22, 2022, at 1:22 PM in Columbus, MS.
He was a man of many talents. He could design buildings and rebuild anything mechanical
including engines and complete automobiles. In a word, he was a Polymath and the modern
version of a Renaissance Man. He was a great father and loyal friend to his own sons and many, many other people. He was an even better Grandfather. He had a P.H.D. in “Grandfatherism” gained from 82 years of practical life experience.
Johnnie (he went by Carroll as a kid) was born in rural Tippah County Mississippi on a cold January 17th, 1940 to his parents, Herman and Ruby Shappley. He is survived by his four sons and their families, Michael and Sabrina Shappley of Las Vegas, NV, Stephen Shappley of Jacksonville, FL, John and T.J. Shappley of Hattiesburg, MS, Thomas and Jennifer Shappley of Tuscaloosa, AL. He has one sister and her family. Nancy and Benny Thornton of Walnut, MS and their son David Thornton. There are six grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. In order of age, Kori, Kyle, Will, Caroline, Mathew, Luke and Charlie.
I would be amiss if I did not mention one of my Golden Retrievers that was a fan favorite of my father. I would talk to him several times per week and he was always asking about the latest Snoopy Dogg story and what he had been up to. I sent him tons of pictures of Snoopy and we even did a live video conference this past week. He got the biggest kick out of that dog and his antics. If I have one regret it would be that I did not get Pop to Las Vegas so Snoopy Dogg could give him the grand tour. I can see it now. He would walk outside, show Pop where to bark at the people walking by on the hiking trails, and then take him back inside and show him where the nice lady will give him food and snacks. Then they would both go in the media room and watch car racing on television.
Last week I was sitting with him talking about how we were going to leave black marks in the hallway of the hospital with the wheelchair because we were going to leave so fast. There is always the question of when somebody dies as if it was a big secret. It is not. Pop caught this plague that has been over the planet for the last two years. He had successfully avoided it until this point with his own set of rules. The standard protocol was to wear a paper mask and stay six feet away from everybody. His were a little different. Imagine if you can, a man in overalls, bandanna, cowboy hat, and a tape measure reminding everybody he needs 20ft clear. He even learned how to use the robot checkout stand vs real people at the store. Yes, he was a character. A large number of people followed my story’s that I wrote about him on Facebook. He was genuinely surprised when I told him how many people were asking about him and wishing him well. He did not think anybody knew who he was. That is an understatement. There are so many story’s that I can not list them all here. They will have to be in the forthcoming book I am writing about his life and growing up in the rural south. The title of the book will be “Memories of a 41 Ford”.
If you would like to send an email to the family you can send it to [email protected] We also have a scholarship fund set up at The Pinebelt Foundation in honor of our father. It will be geared toward students with financial needs in the Golden Triangle area at Junior Colleges who are focused on the study of Architecture and Design. Updated contact information, the full unedited version of this story, and scholarship donation information will be on the website. www.shappley.net.
There will be a memorial and celebration of life on Saturday, January 29th at Lowndes Funeral Home in Columbus, MS at 1:22 PM. My father was not a suit and tie guy so if you want to, wear your best pair of overalls and hat and come tell stories with us.