O'Fallon Progress

Obituary: Johnny Franklin Thornton

Johnny Franklin Thornton, 79, of Troy, passed away Sunday, April 5, at Liberty Village in Maryville, Ill.

He was born Nov. 11, 1935, in Blytheville, Ark. His family moved to southeast Missouri in 1938, where he graduated Wardell High School. He joined, and proudly served, 22 years in the United States Air Force, retiring in 1977. He then worked for McDonnell Douglas as a System Analyst, retiring in 1993. In 2014 he received his 50 Year Masonic Gold Card from the Marine Lodge 355.

He never tired of talking about his Air Force experiences, the Cardinals, and telling fishing stories. As a snow bird, he spent 20 winters enjoying deep sea fishing in Florida.

Johnny was preceded in death by his parents, Fay and Jessie Thornton, nee Allison; youngest son, Bobby Thornton; and first wife, Nelly Thornton, nee Sanstra.

He is survived by his wife, Sarah Carol Thornton, nee Napier; son, Johnny (Beverly) Thornton Jr.; daughter, Anna Koeneman; grandchildren, Nelly Koeneman, Matthew Koeneman and Madison Paige Thornton; sister, Peggy (Jack) McDermott; brothers, Jimmy (Pat) Thornton and Charles (Donna) Thornton; step-son, Richard Morgan; step-granddaughters, Sarah and Tara; step-grandson, Ricky; and nieces, nephews and great-grandchildren.

Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society, www.cancer.org. Condolences may be extended online at www.schildknechtfh.com.

Visitation was Tuesday, April 7, at Schildknecht Funeral Home in O’Fallon.

Funerals service was Wednesday, April 8, at the funeral home with Carol Andricks officiating.

Interment followed at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis.

Schildknecht Funeral Home and Cremation Services handled the arrangements.

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