John Edward Samuel Ryerse
11/17/36 – 3/21/21
John Ryerse was born November 17, 1936 in Gary, Indiana. He was the son of Rev. Robert L. and Ruth (Sauter) RYERSE. He descends from a long line of Dutchmen who first settled in New Amsterdam back in 1646. Survived by one younger brother, David R. Ryerse. Sister Ruth Ryerse (Reed) precedes him in passing. John married Phyllis Ann (Beausay) on November 24, 1957 in Marion, Ohio. They are the parents of four children: Steven Lanne, Robin Leigh (Barber), Martin Jay, and Tiffany Michelle (Westbrook), and 11 grandchildren, and 6 great-grandchildren with another great-grandson on the way. He was surrounded by his beloved wife and children until his death from congestive heart failure on March 21, 2021 at the age of 84.
As the son of a Baptist minister and missionary, John loved the Lord and accepted His saving grace as a young boy. Following his father’s career moves, John’s schooling began at the Seymour Christian School in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He attended schools in 7 states and Canada until he graduated from Washington-Lee High School in Arlington, VA. in 1954. He attended both Cedarville College in Cedarville, Ohio and Fenn College, Cleveland, Ohio.
John married Phyllis Anne Beausay (daughter of Florence Frey and Rev. Lanne Beausay of Upper Sandusky, Ohio) whom he met in college, on November 24, 1957. They settled in Streetsboro, Ohio while working for Western Electric Co. Soon after he was married, John anticipated the draft and volunteered for the U.S. Army to be sure his job would be intact upon return. His first son Steve was born during his deployment.
John was sent to Korea in October of 1959 for a one-year tour of duty. There he served as clerk in Operations and Intelligence of the 2nd Howitzer Battalion, 8th Artillery, 7th Infantry Division of the 8th Army and was stationed just 6 miles south of the demilitarized zone between north and south Korea. He was discharged on October 19, 1960 and returned to his job with Western Electric in Cleveland, Ohio.
At his job with Western Electric, and later AT&T, John worked at several telephone offices and as regional representative in Ohio. In 1968 he transferred to Newark, New Jersey, moving his family to Freehold, and worked on main-frame computer systems. He started doing similar work in New York City from 1975 to 1985 with a front corner office on the 13th floor at 222 Broadway, NYC. In 1988, he transferred to Sandy Springs, GA to work in financial methods, planning and Development, settling in Roswell, GA. John took an early retirement after 32 years of service with AT&T.
As a young boy, he delivered newspapers, played basketball and tennis, played the piano, and also played violin in the school orchestra. He sang 2nd Tenor in the Evangel Boys Quartet in Arlington, Virginia. He was a good singer into his adult life. John was always very ambitious and whether he worked or played, did it enthusiastically. He never shirked a responsibility and usually did his work and someone else’s as well.
He had remembered, “When I was little, my mother would give me scissors and glue and paper to construct some creative art work! More importantly she often gave me a screwdriver and a broken clock or toaster etc. to take apart and repair (or play with!) I usually ended up with lots of screws and leftover loose parts but I was also learning some valuable lessons, and I’ve been handy ever since.”
John always had a great affinity for cars since his teens, particularly for the Ford Mustang of which he restored several over the years. He enjoyed attending many auctions in search of spare parts. In addition to fixing cars, he spent many days helping his kids and others with car repairs, remodeling jobs, finishing basements, building decks and more, especially after retirement. His home construction experience dated back to his days in Streetsboro helping to build Twinsburg Baptist Church. He was happiest being busy serving others with a hammer in his hand!
John and his wife Phyllis were a perfect example of true love. Throughout their 63 ½ years of marriage their enduring love was an example for everyone around them. In great times and even the not so good, they always cared for one another no matter what. Together they had a small business and worked at tackling many hobbies and household projects as a team. And even through his extended illness, they managed to grow more in love with each new day.
As a loving and devoted father, John and his wife raised four children. He was very active with his sons’ Boy Scout troops, helping them both achieve the rank of Eagle Scout. His love language was truly “acts of service” and he was always there to help whoever needed him in an instant, and without complaint. He had a dry wit, caring demeanor, and was a loyal friend to all who knew him. Though he battled heart troubles later in life, he was strong and a fighter and was blessed with many more years of memory-making with his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He lived a full and amazing life to the fullest, thanks to our Lord and Savior.
As Jesus Himself said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. John 11:25-26
The family will celebrate John’s life and legacy with a private memorial service at a later date, complete with John’s favorite, Papa John’s Pizza. In lieu of flowers, donations in his honor can be donated to:
Brown’s Bridge Church
American Heart Association