John Dwight Spence, Sr. of Hoover, Alabama died at the age of 87 on March 28, 2018. John was born in Montgomery, Alabama on November 24, 1930. His family moved to Miami, Florida when he was 6 years old and he grew up there. He graduated from Miami Edison Senior High School in Miami, Florida. He attended the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida and graduated from Roosevelt University, in Chicago, Illinois. However, he always considered himself a Gator. He received an MBA from Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan.
John was preceded in death by his grandparents, Lula Franklin and John M. Craven, Lula Fletcher and Ernest Nimmons Spence of Birmingham; and his parents, Ernest Lockhart and Sarah Frances Craven Spence. He was survived by his wife of 62 years, Rose Mary Daniels Spence, who has since joined him on July 29, 2018. He is also survived by his sons, John Dwight Spence, Jr. (Jan Knight) of Hoover and Scott Lockhart Spence of Tuscaloosa. He also leaves three grandchildren, Nicholas Spence, Kristen Spence Crain (Steven), and Michael Spence all of Birmingham.
He spent 32 devoted years in the US Army Infantry and Chemical Corps where he served with distinction. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit and two Bronze Stars among other decorations. He served in the Korean conflict and the War in Vietnam. He was a graduate of the Command and General Staff College and the Army War College. He retired a full Colonel. After retiring from the Army, he served as the President of Environmental Recovery Services, Inc. in Gainesville, Florida. After that he was Director of Marketing at Olin Ordnance, Inc. in St. Petersburg, Florida. Before his final retirement in 2004 he served as an Environmental Consultant for a number of companies in New York and England.
He was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. “Popsy” loved joking and playing with his grandchildren as they grew up. He always had a quick joke and a smile for everyone he came in contact with. He loved his wood workshop and was an excellent craftsman. He always said he took big pieces and made them into little pieces.
A joint memorial service will be held at the Currie-Jefferson Funeral Home Chapel located at 2701 John Hawkins Parkway, Hoover, Alabama on August 18, 2018 at 1:00 with visitation at 12:00. Interment will follow at Arlington National Cemetery, Washington D.C. in the coming months.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Disabled American Veterans.