John Clarence "Pappy" DeVanie
6/12/1924 - 2/27/2017
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John Clarence DeVanie, known to his family and friends as Pappy, was born June 12, 1924 in Salisbury, MD. He joined the US Army July 19, 1943. He served with the 509 Parachute Infantry Battalion as a Pathfinder in Operation Dragoon establishing a second front against the Nazi's in Southern France. He jumped into the darkness on an early August morning and fought the Nazis with valor and distinction. After the war he married Jeanamay Eason in Tyler, Texas. They were together for 71 years. He worked for Sun Oil Company for 32 years working his way up from roughneck to production manager. He has been active all of his adult life in the 509 Parachute Infantry Association where he served in many capacities including President. In retirement he enjoyed travel with his wife, Daughters; Johnna Brock and June Housman, his grand children and great grand children. His favorite pastime was golf. He worked at the local golf course as a marshall on Mondays and played with his friends on Tuesdays and Thursdays. He is survived by his Daughters, Johnna Brock and June DeVanie Housman, 8 grand children, 20 great grand children and 1 great great grandchild on the way. Visitation is scheduled Friday, March 3, 2017 from 12:00-1:00 pm at Cook Walden Chapel of the Hill, 9700 Anderson Mill Road, Austin, TX 78750 with the service to follow at 1:00 pm. Graveside service will be Saturday, March 4, 2017 at Cathedral of the Pines Cemetery, 7825 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 78703. More details can be found at

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Published in Tyler Morning Telegraph on Mar. 2, 2017.
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Memories & Condolences
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29 entries
February 21, 2019
You are not forgotten and I miss talk to you every Tuesday 11am is not the same now
Philip Handscomb
March 18, 2017
My father served with John and was a good friend. Mom and Dad (LT. John W. Frazier) would see him and his wife at the reunions and we, my brother & I would hear about the good times they had.
THey are both gone but Bruce and I talked to him about 2 or 3 weeks before he passed. Bruce was going to TX in March and they were going to meet up, he missed him by a week.
I was so sad to hear of his passing. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you.....and we lost another brave 509er.
Heather Frazier
March 9, 2017
Pappy's story is nothing short of incredible, and when I met him, even in his 90's, he was still as large a life as you could expect from a true leader of men. There were so many things that didn't have to do that he just did, from the big things to the little things, like making this solo Navy guy among this big group of crazy Army Paratroopers feel as welcome as any of his brothers, just to name one of a million great things he chose to be and do for others every day of his life. Like all great men, his legacy will live on as a standard of how to lead and how to love."
Brandon Moody
March 6, 2017
Pappy, getting to know you was an honor. You were one of the kindest person I ever met. It saddens me greatly not to see you on the golf course. I'm sure you had an escort into heaven. Thanks for being my friend.
Dan Michie
March 3, 2017
It happens once in a lifetime, you meet someone that you never forget. Pappy was more than a warrior, he was someone who enjoyed every minute of every day and he lived every minute to its fullest. Zechariah 10:5 Together they will be like warriors in battle trampling their enemy into the mud of the streets. They will fight because the Lord is with them, and they will put the enemy horsemen to shame. Thank you Lord for this your servant, we are eternally greatful for and wiil remember him. May he dwell forever now in your arms Lord.
John Sokolowski
March 3, 2017
When I was introduced to Pappy a couple of years ago at the golf course I could sense immediately that I was meeting a great man that was loved and esteemed by many. Since that time I truly enjoyed every encounter with him and his fellow golfing buddies. I will miss seeing him.
Woody Endsley
March 3, 2017
What a good and brave man. It was my loss not to know him well, but my father (Dutch Prager) keep me informed in the last couple of years.

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and may perpetual light shine upon him. May his soul, and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
March 2, 2017
It is a gift to meet one of the generation that was responsible for stopping the tyranny of WW2. It was an honor to know him. My love and respect to his family and friends.
Patrick Murphy
March 2, 2017
June, my thoughts and prayers are with you today and in the coming year.
Lori Vernon
March 1, 2017
For Pappy and Marmie
March 1, 2017
Johnny will be greatly missed; but we all have so many, many great memories from the 509th Reunions and special visits in between. Have a great reunion with Daddy (Bob Grover) and all the other troopers that have gone before you! Love to all the Family! Suzanne Grover-Monroe, Michael & Mariah
Suzanne, Michael & Mariah Monroe
March 1, 2017
Rest in Peace, our dear friend. You will be greatly missed. "Geronimo"

Your friends at Crystal Falls
Wes Skaggs
March 1, 2017
Like many other Paratroopers who served in the 509th Parachute Infantry, I had the greatest honor in meeting John C. "Pappy" DeVanie and the rest of the 509ers heroes who served in WWII --- He was truly a pioneer, part of the GREATEST GENERATION, and the he set the path that allowed those of us who became part of the brotherhood of PARATROOPERS... John, may you rest in peace, may you be in the care of our heavenly God --- ALL THE WAY! GERONIMO!!!
CSM(R) Angel Febles
March 1, 2017
Johnnie, your friendship would light up the room. Dad (Bob Grover) always loved seeing you at the reunions and considered you a brother. We will all miss you dearly.
Karen Floyd
March 1, 2017
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March 1, 2017
Rest easy Airborne.
Eric Deese
March 1, 2017
Rest in Peace great patriot who was one of those great Americans who volunteered to fight against the evil factions that prompted WWII. We owe you and your comrades so very much.
Ben Cottle
March 1, 2017
Rest in peace brave Trooper, Geronimo...

Richard M Lecuona (Satellite Beach, Florida)
Richard Lecuona
March 1, 2017
Pappy, you were one of my heroes!
Rest easy Geronimo! Save us a seat on the chalk, we'll hook-up when we get there.
All the Way!
Mike Draper
February 28, 2017
I am at a lose to now of the passing of a man the I called my friend I true genterman and a great airborne and a hero you will be missed by every one that new you sweet dream and rest now you hoot up. And the dz is waiting you phil the Brit 509
Philip Handscomb
February 28, 2017
John is home. He gave so much to everyone he met; leadership, friendship, joy and support. We will miss him deeply. He was one of a kind.
Matt Holzmann
February 28, 2017
As we discussed last week Pappy, if you went out the door before me, I'd be right behind you pushing the stick my friend. See you and Marmie soon. Take care & rest in peace. Hal, Jane and the kids. Love you always.
Hal Persun
February 28, 2017
To Johnna and to all dear to his heart ~ I am so sorry for your loss. I could tell by all of your pictures and videos, Johnna, that he was a great man and loved by many. My condolences. Keeping you in prayer.
Linda Riddle
February 28, 2017
The passing of a great man, my heart is saddened with this news. All the way, Geronimo!
Ray Murphy
February 28, 2017
To Johnna and to all dear to his heart ~ I am so sorry for your loss. I could tell by all of your pictures and videos, Johnna, that he was a great man and loved by many. My condolences. Keeping you in prayer.
Linda Riddle
February 28, 2017
I am at a lose now you are at rest but I can say that this man was my good friend will be sadly miss by one and all that new him Phil Brit 509
Philip Handscomb
February 28, 2017
John, I had the distinct honor and privelege to meet and get to know you through the 509th PIA. You are everything that being a GERONIMO stands for ...or ever will. I take solace in knowing that you are once again reunited with your wife and the many who have gone to their final reward ahead of you. I look forward to the day that we can all meet once again at that final rally point in the sky.
Rest In Eternal Peace, my Brother ...
Mark Jernigan
February 28, 2017
My condolences to the Family, a great American Hero has left us, to be with our higher command. Rest easy Hero your mission is complete here. Until we meet again AATW. Love Henry
Henry Hyde
February 28, 2017
I am so very sad to hear of Pappy's passing. I am so thankful all of you came into our lives. I will never forget his sweet spirit and his wonderful smile. Thinking of you and wishing you moments of peace and comfort during this difficult time.
Julie Lake
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