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Obituaries

Obituaries

John H. Spearman Sr. 1928 - 2007 Lawrence

Funeral services for John H. Spearman Sr., 79, Lawrence, will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Warren-McElwain Mortuary in Lawrence. Burial will be in Oak Hill Cemetery.Mr. Spearman died Wednesday, July 4, 2007, at Laurel Hospital in Laurel, Md.He was born June 28, 1928, in Lawrence, the son of John Leland and Rose Hutcherson Spearman. He attended Pinckney School and Lawrence Junior High School. He graduated from Liberty Memorial High School. He was a guard on his high school basketball team, the Oilers. He attended Kansas University for two years.Mr. Spearman served in the U.S. Army during World War II in the occupation of Japan. He worked as a cutter for Hallmark Cards beginning in 1961 and retired as an industrial engineer in 1994. He served on the Lawrence Human Relations Commission from 1966 to 1969 and was elected to serve on the Lawrence school board from 1969 to 1975.He was a civil rights activist and played a leading role in the Lawrence branch of Concerned Black Parents and the Lawrence chapter of the NAACP, and he was an advocate for affordable housing for low-income residents. He was a member of St. Luke AME Church.He married Vernell Pillow on July 16, 1949, in Lawrence. She died Nov. 5, 1999.Survivors include a daughter, Terry L. Spearman, Beltsville, Md.; three sons, John H. Jr., Glen Burnie, Md., Michael S., Seattle, and Paul M., Kansas City, Mo.; two sisters, Barbara Anderson and Marion Lindsey, of Chicago; and seven grandchildren, John, Anthony, Samantha, Michael, Nyah, Taryn and Ashley.A daughter, Melanie A. Spearman, died earlier.The family will receive friends from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the mortuary.The family suggests memorials to the Lawrence Humane Society, sent in care of the mortuary.Online condolences may be sent at <a href="http://www.warrenmcelwain.com,">www.warrenmcelwain.com</a> subject: Spearman.