WICHITA — Reverend John Truman Rhoads, 81, passed away on July 24, 2021. John was born on April 2, 1940 in Lewis County Missouri to Chester Vincent Rhoads and Georgia Ellen (Henry) Rhoads. John learned the value of working with his hands from his father, and learned the value of learning and service from his mother.
In his early life John lived in Missouri, Kansas, Oregon, then back to Barton County where he would grow up. John was the oldest of four siblings, Dusty, Bill and Peg. John took pride in his early accomplishments in 4-H and was active in the United Methodist Youth Fellowship Group in Great Bend, Kan. At Great Bend High School, John excelled in public speaking, debate and photography. It was in high school that he was called to the ministry. John went on to earn a Bachelor’s degree at Southwestern College in Winfield, Kan. where he met the love of his life, Jane Ann Glotfelty Rhoads. The two wed in 1963, and graduated in 1964. After graduation, John attended Garret Theological Seminary, and for 10 years he served as a United Methodist minister at First United Methodist Church in El Dorado, Kan., where his daughter Jennifer was born in 1969; St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Wichita, Kan. where his son Jamison was born in 1972; and at First United Methodist Church in Oxford, Kan.
With Jane’s support, John decided to go back to school and graduated from WSU in 1980 with a Master’s of Education, then taught photography for USD 259 for 25 years — a few years at Wilbur Junior High, then at Southeast High School. When he moved from the church to the school, John liked to say he was ministering to kids, just in a different location. In his spare time, he did adjunct work for WSU, Kansas Newman and Butler County College, where he led a popular Flint Hills Photography Seminar for 10 years, fully retiring in 2005.
Throughout life, John enjoyed traveling with his family. He and his wife Jane put thousands of miles on their cars traveling throughout Kansas — he photographed barns and she looked for opera houses.
In retirement, John enjoyed volunteering at First Presbyterian Church, the Scottish Rite of Free Masonry and building toys for the Sunflower Woodworker’s Guild. He loved nothing more than spending time with his grandchildren Emma, Jared and Wyatt — attending t-ball games, swim meets, concerts or their special trips to Braum’s or teaching them to make toys in his wood shop. John felt lucky to have a new granddaughter Stella and was looking forward to watching her grow.
John is preceded in death by his parents Chet and Georgia; and brother Chester Vincent “Dusty” Rhoads Jr. and his wife Pam Rhoads; and brother William “Bill” Eugene Rhoads. John is survived by his wife of 57 years Jane Ann Glotfelty Rhoads; daughter Jennifer Lynn Keller (Derek Keller); and son Jamison Rhoads (Kathleen “Kate” Michelle Rhoads) and grandchildren Emma Elizabeth Keller, Jared Garland Keller, Wyatt John Keller and Stella Ann Rhoads. He is also survived by his sister Margaret Ellen “Peg” Nelson; sister-in-law Mary Rhoads; many beloved nieces and nephews; and his trusty dog Hoss.
Services were held for John T. Rhoads on July 26, 2021. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating in John’s memory to First Presbyterian Church, 525 N. Broadway Ave, Wichita, KS 67214 and St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, 1356 N. Broadway, Wichita, Kan. 67214 to help them carry on their ministry as John would have wanted. Share tributes online at: www.dlwichita.com.
Funeral arrangements provided by
Downing & Lahey Mortuary
6555 E. Central
Wichita, KS 67206
Great Bend (Kan.) Tribune, July 28, 2021