West Plains, MO Location (417) 256-4141

Thayer, MO Location (417) 264-7242

Johnny Robert Knowles
Johnny Robert Knowles

Funeral Services for Johnny Robert Knowles, 85, West Plains, Missouri, will be at 11:00 a.m., Monday, April 23, 2012, at the First Baptist Church, under the direction of Carter Funeral Home Inc.

Visitation will be 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., Sunday, April 22, 2012, at the Carter Funeral Home Chapel. Burial will be in the Howell Memorial Park Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the First Baptist Church, to the Gideons or to Riverways Hospice and may be left at Carter Funeral Home.

Johnny Robert Knowles, the son of the late Thomas Milzie Knowles and Hester Roberta “Bertie” Cheatham, was born January 16, 1927 in Calico Rock, Arkansas. He entered into eternal rest April 19, 2012 at his home in West Plains, Missouri at the age of 85 years.

After graduating from Melbourne High School with the Class of 1945, J.R. served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He met the love of his life, Joann Dillard, at the Hillbilly Junction Cafe in Calico Rock, Arkansas in 1947. The two were married on December 14, 1949 in Calico Rock, Arkansas and were blessed with four children during their 58 years of marriage.

He enjoyed bowling, traveling and spending time with his children, grandchildren and great-

grandchildren. He was also an avid Cardinal Baseball fan.

J.R. had been co-owner of Knowles Furniture in Mountain Home, Arkansas, co-owner of Knowles Chevrolet in Gainesville, Missouri, and co-owner of Knowles Chevrolet-Olds in West Plains, Missouri with his wife, Joann.

He was a member of the First Baptist Church in West Plains for the past 42 years.

J.R. is survived by three daughters, Rita Jo Richardson and husband Larry of Alton, Missouri; Rhonda Kay Decker and husband Mike of Arnold, Missouri; Lesa Jane Walls and husband Ron of West Plains, Missouri and one son, Jimmy John Knowles and wife Betty of Ozark, Missouri. Also surviving are nine grandchildren, Melissa Smith and husband Gabe; Gregory Richardson and wife Mandy; Lee Anna Smith and husband Max; Courtney Richardson, Robert Webb, Jeremy Decker, Joshua Decker, Andrew Knowles and Jacob Knowles; seven greatgrandchildren, Lacy Jo, Laina Beth, Brock David, Bryce Thomas and Karli Nicole Richardson, Abigail Reese Bailey and Memphis Russell Webb and two step-grandchildren, Miles and Malyn Smith. Also surviving are his three brothers, Gail, Darrell and Bill Knowles, one sister, Betty King and one brother-in-law, James L. Dillard and wife Carolyn and many nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his wife, parents, one sister, Laverne Cone and twin granddaughters, Michelle Ann and Maria Allison Decker.

J.R. will be sadly missed by all who knew and loved him, but the family rejoices in his sweet reunion in Heaven with his “Dandy,” Josie.



  1. Mike & Shirley Roberts
    April 19, 2012 @ 8:01 pm

    Rita, Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.


  2. Patricia Blevins Dollgener
    April 19, 2012 @ 9:44 pm

    Lesa and family. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Cherish your memories, and they will help comfort you. I will keep you in my prayers. Love to all.


  3. Bob & Paulette Michel and Families.
    April 20, 2012 @ 10:44 am

    Another of the greatest generation is laid to rest.
    From our families to John’s extended families.

    PEACE and LOVE


  4. Rita Beth Collins Gibson
    April 20, 2012 @ 9:11 pm

    Blessings, dear Lesa and families, at your Dad’s passing. My sincere sympathy but also rejoice that this is not the end. Love in Christ and prayers, fellow Italiano, Rita


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