John Earl Talley, 91, of Mineral, passed away on June 17, 2020 at his home after succumbing to complications associated with prostate cancer.
He was born in Dekalb County, Alabama, on March 6, 1929. He was the son of the late Thomas and Tinnie Talley with eight brothers and sisters.
He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Carolyn; his daughter, Deborah; his son, John Jr.; his brother, Norman; his niece and nephew, Sherry and Paul; an extended close family spanning Texas to Maryland and a plethora of grand-animals.
John left school in the sixth grade to help on the family farm before serving in the United States Navy from 1947 to 1952, most notably aboard the destroyer USS Furse as a machinist apprentice. Using his constitution and work ethics from his life on the farm and the skills he learned in the Navy, he pursued a career in construction with Otis Elevator Company until forming his own company, Lynn Fabricators, in 1962 in Washington, D.C., where he managed the business until his retirement in 1995.
An easy rider himself, John witnessed the turning points in American history: the Great Depression, the birth of rock and roll, the counterculture and Civil Rights Movement, the birth of space exploration and bell bottoms, the Great Recession, and four wars. During his long life and through retirement, John shared his zeal for life with many friends with whom he enjoyed motorcycle riding, boating, and motor homing. He travelled to all 50 states and abroad to Europe and Asia.
John was a proud man, a hard worker, and a relentless seeker of improvement who never settled for less than the best. He continued to work on his land and ride his tractor until weeks before passing. He will be forever known as a dedicated husband, father, businessman, and as a purveyor of the perfect margarita.
The family is planning an event in the future to celebrate John’s life and legacy. Family and friends are encouraged to attend and celebrate the life of “Big John” when a time is established.
The Talley family is especially grateful to the doctors and nurses of Martha Jefferson Hospital and the entire staff at Legacy Hospice for their wonderful and critical support and assistance through this difficult time.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to please consider a donation in John’s memory to Legacy Hospice, 1801 Bayberry Court, Suite 201, Richmond VA 23226, 804-528-5883.