Elder Johnnie Louis Bryant
May 1, 1937 – January 6, 2021
On January 6, 2021, Elder Johnnie Louis Bryant departed this life at the age of 83 after valiantly enduring a long battle with illness. His firm belief in God supported him throughout his life and ultimately gave him everlasting peace. His devotion to his family and community will always be remembered and his memory will be cherished.
Born on May 1, 1937 in Prentiss, Mississippi, Johnnie Louis Bryant was the son of Leroy and Mamie Lou (Griffith) Bryant. He was one of nine children. Never forgetting his hometown and roots, he took a leap of faith at a young age and left the deep south to explore what the world had to offer and what he could offer the world.
In 1953, Johnnie enlisted in the United States Navy and served during the Vietnam War. He held positions as an Aircraft Division Chief, Maintenance Chief, and Squadron Safety Petty Officer. In his 23 years of active military service, Johnnie was deployed on the USS Hornet, USS Forestall, USS Bonhomme Richard, and the USS Kitty Hawk. He was the recipient of multiple Good Conduct Awards, Man of the Month, Man of the Year, and earned a National Defense Medal. Throughout his career, Johnnie was based in NAS Norfolk, and NAS Oceana, VA; Barin Field, Folly, Alabama; Moffett Field, Mountain View, CA; and NAS Miramar, San Diego, CA. During this time Johnnie attended night classes to earn a Bachelor of Business Management. He retired from the U.S. Navy as Chief Petty Officer, after 23 years of active service. After serving an additional 27 years as a federal government employee, Johnnie retired from civil service as a Quality Assurance Specialist and Aircraft Inspector. He served this nation honorably for more than fifty years.
Johnnie met, and married the love of his life, Evangelist Barbara (Taylor) Bryant. Together they planted over six decades of cherished love. Their union was blessed with five sons: Terrance, David, Steve, Kevin, and Keith, and one daughter, Janice, and resided in San Diego, California since 1963. As a father and husband, Johnnie worked to model what it means to be a man of unwavering faith and a commitment to both family and community. He and Barbara dedicated much of their lives to ministry in the community served by St. St Stephen's Church of God in Christ where he was a member since 1978. As a man of sincere belief and true Christian values, Johnnie was a dedicated servant leader in the St. Stephens congregation. He was an Ordained Elder for more than 40 years, ministering and praying with members who were either homebound or homeless as part of the outreach ministry, God’s Extended Hand.
While Johnnie was a serious man, he had a great sense of humor, (well he thought he was funny, and we let him think so). He loved to watch classic western films, classic comedy shows and Wild Kingdom. He cared deeply for others and had a great passion for his outreach ministry. His mere presence made those around him feel safe, secure, and loved. Even when he was down, you would never know, as his smile could light up a room.
Johnnie would like to let you know that his work here is done. He received a call, a sort of an offer you cannot refuse. An appointment from which he will not be returning. This assignment comes with a huge sign-on bonus, a reunion with family and friends he has not seen in a long time. His new mission takes him to a wonderful place where he will be worshipping and praising his heavenly father alongside his loved ones that have transitioned on before. Music, laughter, and love are guaranteed, and maybe fried chicken (his favorite)!
Elder. Johnnie Louis Bryant will be remembered by his wife, Barbara; his sisters, Inez Tatum, Magdelene Hall (Ray), Catherine Hawthorn (Cleveland - deceased), and Mary Young (Albert); his brother, Albert Bryant; his children, Terrance Bryant, David Bryant, Steven Bryant, Janice Bryant, Kevin Bryant (Sue) and Keith Bryant (Philecia); his grandchildren, Keiyana, Kendra, Taylor, Sienna (Asem), Carliesa (Adrian), Dominique, Michael, and Steven; and his great-grandchildren, Qadir, Amir, Kahlil, and Adriana. He will also be remembered by his extended family, especially Sabrina, Veronica, Matthew, Brianne, Jayla, and Faith who loved him like their own father, and a host of other relatives, friends, and his church family.
He is predeceased by his parents, Leroy, and Mamie Lou (Griffith) Bryant; his siblings, Irene, Alice, and Anna; and his brothers-in-law Cleveland, and Samuel.
Elder Johnnie Louis Bryant
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Bishop Joseph Clark
January 26, 2021
To Janice and family, my heartfelt and sincere condolences to you and your entire family at the homegoing of your father. My thoughts and prayers are with you and may your entire family find comfort in the holy words of our Lord.
Bishop Joseph L. Clark Jr of Wilmington NC