John Abner Mayes was born February 24, 1938 in Houston, Mississippi to John Henry Mayes and Laverne Marshall. John attended Pleasant Grove Church in Ingomar, MS as a youth. In the early 1960’s in his 20’s, John migrated north to find a home in Evanston, IL.
John found a passion for bowling, shooting pool, and singing and dancing to his blues songs. After relocating to Evanston, John found employment at Marshall Fields as a custodian. There is where he met his wife Julia. On July 17, 1976 John and Julia united in holy matrimony.
John and Julia had 3 beautiful daughters, Terri, Cheryl “NeNe”, and Tricia. As John’s bonus children he instantly fell in love with “his girls”. Without hesitation he would be there for them in every way later doing it all again for his grandchildren Kimira “Kiki”, Courtney, Brittney, Jamie, Jasmin, Nate’, Jordan, and Tyra. It did not stop there. Now affectionately called Gramps or Grampsy he was at it once again, helping with his great-grandkids, Jada, Andrew, Jaylyn, Aamir, Jayla, Jaliyah, Afiniti, Jaydyn, Brooklynn, Carter, Randy Jr., and the newest kid on the block, Ashanti.
There were no limits to what Gramps would do for his family near and far. He was the rock of his family, a phenomenal man, husband, father, grandfather, brother, and uncle. After dedicating 39 yrs of service to NorthShore University HealthSystem Evanston Hospital, Gramps retired to spend his time with family and friends. Gramps had a special connection with his nephew’s Billy Earl "Sonny" Robbins and Michael "Mike" Wells who looked up to him like a father.
On Friday April 10, 2020 John passed away at home at the age of 82 yrs old. Gramps was proceeded in death by his parents, John Henry and Laverne Mayes, his sisters Doris Robbins, Jurlean Thompson, Olivia Mayes, his brothers, James “Slick” Mayes, Henry Lum Mayes, and his great-grandson Jaylyn Harris. John left to carry on his legacy his beloved wife, Julia; brothers Ruben “Bud” Mayes, Max Mayes; his daughters Terri (Nathaniel), Cheryl “Nene”, Tricia (Alton); grandchildren, Kiki (Brandon), Courtney, Brittney, Jamie, Jasmin, Nate’, Jordan, Tyra; great-grandchildren Jada, Andrew, Aamir, Jayla, Jaliyah, Afiniti, Jaydyn, Brooklynn, Carter, Randy Jr. and more than 33 nieces and nephews.
Funeral arrangements entrusted to Thompson Funeral and Cremation Services Inc. Mr. Philip L. Gillette ~ Funeral Director
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