John D. Guilford, 65, of Defiance, passed away Wednesday, July 9, 2014, in his home, surrounded by his family.
He was born in Defiance, Ohio on September 16, 1948. He was the son of the late Donald W. and Clara C. (Wilhelm) Guilford. John married Linda K. Mack on June 10, 1977.
He will be greatly missed by his wife Linda, of 37 years; daughters Abby M. (Josh) Guilford-Ryan of Defiance, and Kay M. Guilford (fiancé Josh Johnson) of Defiance; son Kirk V. (Sara) Guilford of Ney, Ohio; grandchildren, Victoria Harbourt, Hannah Harbourt and Hanna Johnson; "honorary daughter" Jenny Seele of Defiance, and her children James Seele (godchild) and Jaycee Seele; his sisters, Mary (Robert) Kurtz of Harlan, Ind., Barbara (Randy) Cline of Hicksville, Ohio, Kathryn (Greg) Balser of Hicksville, Ohio, and Rita (J.R.) Layne of Mark Center, Ohio; brothers, Richard Guilford of Hicksville, Ohio, and Donald Guilford of Defiance; and his faithful pet dog and companion, Chloe.
John was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Terry Guilford; brother-in-law. Doug Mack; and his beloved beagles, Ajax and Bocephus.
John was a 1966 graduate of Fairview High School and began working at Ohio Art in 1966. He served in Vietnam as a sergeant in the U.S. Army, Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry, 173rd Airborne. He served our country in active duty March 1968 to February 1970. John was honored with several awards and commendations in his military career: Army Commendation Medal, Army Commendation with "V" Device, Bronze Star Medal, Vietnam Combat Certificate, Air Medal, Bronze Star, Combat Infantry Badge, Presidential Unit Citation, and Meritorious Unit Citation.
Following his military service, John served on the Defiance County Sheriff's Department as a sergeant. He later retired from Defiance Metal Products in 2012. John was a lifelong Catholic and present member of St. Mary Catholic Church in Defiance. He was also a lifetime member of the VFW. John was an avid lover of many things, including softball, tractors, hunting, camping, fishing, family, especially kids and grandkids, and telling stories.
Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Mary Catholic Church, Defiance, Ohio, at 11 a.m. on Monday, July 14, with Father Randy Giesige officiating. Friends are invited to call Saturday from 6-9 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and from 4-8 p.m. at Lawson-Roessner Funeral Home, 1753 S. Clinton St., Defiance. The rosary will be recited at 7:30 p.m. Sunday. Burial will be in Riverside Cemetery, Defiance, with military graveside rites by the Sherwood VFW.
The family suggests memorials to CHP Defiance Area In-Patient Hospice Center or Catholic Masses in John's memory. Condolences to the family may be shared at www.lawsonroessner.com.