John Miller Pleasant, age 93, of Purley, N.C., passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, July 17, 2019, in the community he loved. Born February 12, 1926 to John and Irma Pleasant, he was preceded in death by his wife, Mabel Bradner Pleasant; his son. Jerry Michael (Mike) Pleasant; and his five siblings, William, Elizabeth, Ruby, Rosie, and Mildred. He was married for 67 years to Mabel Bradner, his classmate at Bartlett Yancey High School. After serving in World War II, he returned to Purley and thanks to Mabel's brother, Dorsey Bradner, got reintroduced to Mabel. They were in Dorsey and Mary's wedding in 1948 and this set in motion their engagement and marriage on October 1, 1949. As couples, they became best friends, raising families, going on beach vacations together, and later traveling together on bus trips and Ace Hardware shows. John is survived by son, Dan Pleasant, and his wife, Barbara (the "daughter he and Mabel never had") of Danville, and by daughter-in-law, Karin Pleasant of Holly Springs, N.C. He is also survived by grandchildren, Dan Miller Pleasant Jr. and wife, Beth, of Raleigh, N.C., Anna Pleasant Grossnickle and husband, Andrew, of Fredericksburg, Va., and Kelsey, John Michael and Lindsey Pleasant of Holly Springs; and great-grandchildren, Dan Miller Pleasant III of Raleigh, and James and Elizabeth Grossnickle of Fredericksburg, Va. His family was the center of his being. This manifested in his love, generosity, caring, dedication, interest, stories sharing and wise counsel. After graduating from Bartlett Yancey High School in 1943, he joined the Marines (actually joined the Navy and was drafted into the Marines) serving two years in World War II in the 3rd Amphibious Corp, including 18 months overseas in the South Pacific with tours in Guam, Guadalcanal, Okinawa, and north China. He was in the Yellow Sea on a landing vessel positioned to invade Japan when the war ended. He then deployed into China to demobilize Japanese troops and after this mission was transferred to the Pentagon before being discharged in 1946 receiving the Presidential Unit Citation. Of interest, he managed to go from boot camp through World War II as one of the "5 Ps"--Pleasant, Piercy, Perkins, Pittman, and Perro. They remained friends after the war, and managed to get together periodically, including a trip to Camp Lejeune where he said "they rolled out the red carpet for us", as they should. John was truly of the "Greatest Generation" and was and still is a proud Marine, semper fidelis. Upon return from the service, he joined his brother, William in the family business, Pleasant General Merchandise Store in Purley, N.C. In the 24 years in the "store" business, he demonstrated a tireless work ethic, dedication to his customers including generosity and caring, and for sure a love for playing practical jokes. When there was a bad tobacco crop, he and brother, William would often forgive debt and allow the customer to start the year with a clean bill. He also treated every customer with total respect, and genuinely cared for them and their family. Taking somewhat of a risk, he left the family business and entered the building supply business in Yanceyville, N.C. He acknowledged he could not build even a dog house, but he knew he was a good salesman and he was determined to build a business, He started a branch location in Yanceyville for Roxboro Lumber, and later bought the business. He and his partner, Rob Walker who was an accomplished builder, built a successful Ace Home and Building Center. After 20 years in the building supply business, he retired. He was very active in his church and civic and community organizations. In retirement he continued this service with the help of his wife, Mabel. This included delivering Mabel's coveted and delicious pound cakes, delivering Meals on Wheels, organizing the Men's Fellowship Breakfast at Purley United Methodist Church, something he started 30 years ago that continues today, convincing the Senior Citizen Center in Yanceyville, N.C. they needed to have fellowship breakfasts and he helped organize, serving in many leadership positions at Purley United Methodist Church, and much more. Like his mother before him, he was truly a pillar of the church and the Purley community. And then there is baseball. His love of the game started as a player in the Caswell County League. No secret, he was a very big Boston Red Sox fan that started with his admiration for Ted Williams and his serve to his country in World War II. For many years, he treated his family to a trip to Baltimore to see the Red Sox play a series, listened to games on the radio and then watched practically every game on TV. He never lost faith that they could win it all, and finally they won it all in 2004 and out came the Boston Red Sox flags, socks, and caps. He was referred to as the "Mayor of Purley" by his friends and neighbors. In addition to his family, his community and his church family were so important in his life. Dad, Granddaddy, Great Granddaddy, Dee Dee, Great Dee Dee, Mr. P, Uncle John, Doc, John Miller, are all used fondly by the many that loved him. As Mabel's health and then his health failed, this love was returned many time over with patience, dedication and love through sharing of celebrations, the sharing of meals including Sara's chicken casserole and Dorothy's fried chicken, lunch outings, performing garden and lawn work and home repairs, and just in general "being on call" with the call list normally starting with David Myers. In summary, John Miller Pleasant was a humble and good man, who led a simple life that touched and positively influenced and impacted many. Funeral services will be held at Purley United Methodist Church at 11 a.m. on Saturday July 20, 2019, with the Reverend Melinda Sturm and Howard James officiating and friend, John Bradsher assisting. Interment will follow in the church cemetery. There will be a celebration lunch immediately following interment at Providence Fire Department, where the family will receive friends. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Purley United Methodist Church, Attention: Amy Woods, 4600 Old Hwy 86 N, Yanceyville, NC 27379. Townes Funeral Home, 215 West Main Street, Danville, Va. is serving the Pleasant family. Online condolences may be made at

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