Born May 27, 1924, to James Dewey and Rosalie Kirk Hodnett, John was a proud native of Frog Eye, AL, in Tallapoosa County. John was a veteran of WWII serving in the U.S. Army Infantry in Europe. After the War he worked in Langdale Mill for several years. In the early 1950’s he joined the West Point and LaGrange Coca-Cola Bottling Companies owned by the Cobb family. He started this phase of his career in the bottling room and had increasing responsibilities, eventually retiring as Manager of LaGrange Coca-Cola Bottling Co. He was proud to be referred to as a “Coca-Cola Man” and was extremely fond of the Cobbs. He greatly appreciated the opportunities they gave him to grow throughout his career. After his retirement he continued to work for the family in various capacities until 2009.
John and his wife, Dorothy “Dot” Crowder, lived in LaGrange, GA for 42 years, happily returning to Valley in 2009. He enjoyed reconnecting with friends, attending Langdale Congregational Christian Church and participating in Bobby’s Backyard Brotherhood fellowship group. For the last several years of his life John devoted most of his time to the loving care of his wife of 66 years who predeceased him in 2010. John was also predeceased by two sisters, Sara McDaniel and Wilma Abercrombie.
He is survived by his son, Byron Hodnett (Leslie) of Ponte Vedra Beach, FL; his granddaughter, Lisa Richards (Chris) of Matthews, NC; great-granddaughters, Hannah Richards and Abby Richards; nephews, Lee McDaniel and Larry Peck; and a niece, Vicki Holman.
The family is extremely grateful for John’s many friends that visited with him often, for the wonderful care of Hospice over the past several weeks, and for the kind and capable “band of angels” who took care of him at his home, especially Angelia McGregor, Catherine Hutchinson, Robert McGregor, and Mershilla Winston-Heard. The helpfulness and many kindnesses of John’s sister-in-law, Joan Hammock, are also deeply appreciated.
A funeral service was held today at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley, AL. Graveside services were at 11:00 AM /EST in Johnson Memorial Gardens.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to Langdale Congregational Christian Church, 2400 65th Street, Valley, AL 36854.
Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home of Valley is handling arrangements.