John Thies

Alton | Thursday, May 25 2023 |

On Thursday, May 25, 2023, John Orville Thies, loving husband and father of four sons, passed away at the age of 86, in the comfort of his home.
John was born on December 28, 1936, in Rock Island, Illinois, moving shortly thereafter to Alton, Illinois, where he was raised, alongside his four younger brothers and sisters. In 1954, he was awarded a United States Navy ROTC scholarship that took him to Northwestern University where he earned his degree in business administration. His Naval scholarship allowed him to spend his college summers at sea, where he continued his officer training. Upon graduation, John served aboard the USS Douglas H. Fox on numerous Atlantic and Mediterranean cruises during the early days of the Cold War.

On his return home, John settled in St. Louis, Missouri, and soon took a position with Southwestern Bell. There, he would spend his career in management, with a front row seat to the burgeoning communications revolution. In 1963, he married the love of his life, Mary Ann McCarvel, and together they raised four sons, John Michael, Steven, Kevin and Brian. He and Mary Ann would have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary later this year.

John was a great builder, a craftsman, a voracious reader, and a remarkable historian. He was infused with a community spirit and spent countless hours building programs that improved the lives of others. He was a lover of all things Kansas City: barbecue, Chiefs, Royals, and even a misguided devotion to Kansas Jayhawks basketball. He was a good friend to many; kind, patient and encouraging. His wit was quick, dry and always good-natured. John was an unabashed patriot and grateful to be an American. Most notably and simply, he was a gentleman of great honor and integrity.

John was preceded in death by his father, Orville, and his mother, Lorene, as well as his sister, Margaret, and his son, John Michael. He is survived by his wife Mary Ann, their sons and daughters-in-law, Steven and Amy, Kevin and Joanne, Brian and Heather, as well as grandchildren, Erin, Elsa, Emma, Griffin, Ainsley, and Miles, his brothers, David and Michael, his sister, Mary, and numerous nephews, nieces and loved ones within the extended families.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, May 30th, 2023 at St. Michael the Archangel in Leawood, Kansas. Visitation will begin at 10:00 AM with Mass to follow at 11:00 AM and subsequent interment at Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery. The family will host a reception thereafter at the Fairways of Iron Horse, 5241 W. 151st Terrace, Leawood, Kansas. Flowers or donations may be sent to 14521 Nall Ave, Leawood, Kansas.

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