John Allen Cockerham, Sr. left this world to be with his Lord and Savior on Saturday, March 9, 2019. Born January 14, 1924, to James (Jim) Warren and Elizabeth (Lizzie) Grant Cockerham. John Allen was a graduate of Hamilton High School and was a lifelong resident of Hamilton, MS. After meeting his sweetheart, Georgia Mae Garner, a year behind him in school, he intentionally repeated a year of school to graduate with and ultimately marry her in 1942. Their life together was a true picture of love and commitment through more than 76 years of marriage. John Allen provided love, support, & guidance to a family of 5 children, 15 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren, and 6 great-great-grandchildren through his faith and steadfast devotion.
Beyond his love of the Lord and his family, John Allen also loved his country and was proud of his military service spanning more than 21 years of active and reserve duty. He had to leave his sweetheart, Georgia, behind when he was drafted into WWII in 1943. Achieving the rank of Captain during commissioned service and a rank of SFC E-7 during non-commissioned service, John Allen’s military history included: active duty assignments with the USAAF in the European and Asiatic Pacific Theatres of WWII as a Gunner/Armorer/Togglier -completing 21 B-17 flight missions as part of the 100th Bomb Group (Bloody 100th), active duty as part of the 155th Infantry Battalion, and active duty assignments with MSARNG Retired Reserve forces in support of homeland peace during the Civil Rights Protests of the 1960’s. John Allen retired from the MSARNG with an honorable discharge in 1969, but he maintained contact with other service members through his frequent trips to the Columbus Air Force Base and through his membership in the 100th Bomb Group Foundation.
John Allen Cockerham served as 3rd district Monroe County Supervisor for a number of years.
Preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Eloise Cockerham Brewer and Louise Cockerham Byrd; one brother, James Cockerham; a son, John Cockerham, Jr., two daughter-in-law’s, Lynda Cockerham and Michelle Cockerham; and a grandson, Lance Cockerham.
John Allen leaves behind a lasting legacy of family who was able to bear witness to his remarkable life and take note of the faith-first example by which he lived including his wife, Georgia Mae Cockerham; one brother, Sam Grady Cockerham (Alice); his children, Philip Lance Cockerham (Judy) of Hamilton, MS, Terry Garner Cockerham of Hamilton, MS, Lisa Cockerham Martin (Charlie) of Trussville, AL, and Kevin Wayne Cockerham (Cindy) of Hamilton, MS, and one daughter-in-law, Celeste Cockerham of Hamilton, MS; fourteen grandchildren, Leigh Ann West, Latham Cockerham, Philana Cockerham, Wesley Cockerham, Tracey Cockerham, Jada Newman, Jordan Vance, Maeci Walker, Micah Martin, Matthew Martin, Kemmins Cockerham, Cheslee Cockerham, Madelyn Cockerham, and Georgia Cockerham; and 16 great-grandchildren and 6 great-great-grandchildren. Also, numerous nieces and nephews.
Pallbearers will be Wesley Cockerham, Tracey Cockerham, Micah Martin, Kemmins Cockerham, Grayson Cockerham, and Lynn West. Honorary pallbearers will be the Deacons of Center Hill Baptist Church.
Memorials may be made to Abby Acres 50771 Old Highway 25 S Amory, MS 38821.