United States Army Command Sergeant Major (Retired)
Beloved husband, inspiring father, cherished granddad, and papa, United States Command Sergeant Major (Retired) Jerry Wayne Johns joined the ranks of those gone before him on Sunday, October 18, 2020. CSM Johns, a Vietnam Veteran, passed away in Ponca City, Oklahoma, along with his constant companion, Scout.
Born on April 12, 1947 in Blackwell, Oklahoma, son of Ula Wayne Johns and Mary Mildred Johns. Jerry was a graduate of Blackwell High School, class of 1965. He enlisted in the Army in 1967 and after the completion of his training, he arrived in Vietnam as a Ranger/Special Forces (Green Beret). He served in combat with the 4th Battalion 9th Infantry Regiment, “MANCHU”.
During his service in combat, he was awarded the Bronze Star (with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster), the Purple Heart (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters), the Army Commendation Medal (with “V” Device with 5 Oak Leaf Clusters), the Air Medal (with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster), the Meritorious Service Medal (with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster), the Army Achievement Medal (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters), the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Ribbon, the NCO Development Ribbon, the NCO Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Vietnam Service Ribbon, the Vietnam Campaign Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Expert and Combat Infantryman’s Badges, the Air Assault Badge.
He rose through the ranks from Private to Command Sergeant Major, the highest rank of non-commissioned soldier in record time. The soldiers under his command were his top priority and loved being in the field with them.
In addition to his parents, Jerry was preceded in death by his brother Tommy Harold Johns and his son Justin Wade Johns.
He is survived by his wife of 24 years, Sylvia Kathleen Johns (Smith) and mother of his children, Cheryl Lynn Johns (Oder). His children Cassie Johns, Amber Johns, Robert Johns and wife Janelle, Emily Wilkinson and Jeffrey Skaggs. His grandchildren Brianica Williams, Kiara Velez (Johns) and husband Melvin Velez, Jerome Bacon, Dailon Bacon, David Bacon, Tearron Dixon, Nevaeh Johns, Marquis Wallace, Milik Wallace, Miangel Wallace, Mechelle Marshall, and Grace Wilkinson, and Kayla Skaggs. His great grandchildren Jeremiah Velez, Gabriella Speight, Gracelynn Speight and Jordan Bowen. And countless friends, neighbors, and Soldiers whose lives he touched with grace and made them forever better having known him.
Jerry’s unconditional love, fathomless compassion, unparalleled leadership and whip-quick wit will live on in the hearts of his children and grandchildren, who would give anything for just one more boat ride with their Daddy and Granddad.
Graveside services will be held at Blackwell Cemetery, Friday, October 30th at 2 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to:
Vietnam MANCHU Association
Attn: Dan McKinney, Treasurer
14268 E. Millbrook Drive
Effingham, IL 62401
Ponca City Humane Society
PO Box 1671
Ponca City, OK 74602
“RANGERS LEAD THE WAY - KEEP UP THE FIRE”