Cover photo for John Karns's Obituary
John Karns Profile Photo
1937 John 2023

John Karns

July 14, 1937 — July 15, 2023

Butler Township, Ohio

KARNS, John William, age 86 of Butler Twp., passed away Saturday, July 15, 2023 at the Springmeade Health Center.  He was born July 14, 1937 in Dayton, Ohio, son of the late Norman and Mae (Ritchie) Karns.  John was a 1955 graduate of Northridge High School and was a retired employee of General Motors.  In 1984, John and his family were transferred to Brownsville, Texas where he worked at the plant just across the border in Matamorous, Mexico.  After 35 years of service, John retired in 1999.  He especially loved the warm weather and spending time on South Padre Island with Joyce, and they decided to move back to Butler Township in 2007 to be closer to family and lifelong friends.

John was an avid sports fan and loved watching games, especially the TCU Horned Frogs, from where his daughter Jennie is an alumni, as well as The Ohio State Buckeyes.  He loved his Reds and Bengals and was proud of attending the 1981 Bengals vs. Chargers “Freezer Bowl” AFC Championship.  His absolute favorite time of year was the month of March and celebrating March Madness and the NCAA Basketball tournament.  John lost his parents to cancer when he was a young adult, and health became very important to John. He walked every day to promote wellness for himself and others.

John is survived by his beloved wife of 54 years, Joyce (Hoover) Karns; was a loving father to children, Carrie Davis, Phillip Karns and wife, Rosie, John Karns, and Jennifer Pratt and husband, Ryan; grandchildren, Sean Davis and wife, Jessica, Lindsey Harkins and husband, Willie, Avery Pratt, Abrianna Karns, and Francesca Birdsley and husband, Trey; great-grandchildren, Madison, Keegan, William, Caleb, Leo and Phoenix; along with a host of extended family and many friends.  John deeply loved his family and was so proud of his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

A Gathering of Family and Friends will be held from 4-7 pm, Thursday, July 20 at the Morton & Whetstone Funeral Home, 139 S. Dixie Dr., Vandalia.  A Memorial Service will be held at a date to be determined.  In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial contribution in John’s memory to Ohio’s Hospice of Miami County for the outstanding care they provided John and his family.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John Karns, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, July 20, 2023

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

Morton & Whetstone Funeral Home

139 South Dixie Drive, Vandalia, OH 45377

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