John K. Cherry Jr., 75, West Lafayette, died at 2:20 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013, with his wife and three children at his side. He was born Nov. 24, 1937, in Kokomo, to John K. Cherry and Hazel D. (Sumpter) Cherry. He was married June 13, 1959, to Judy Dianne Wykoff in Marion, and she survives.
John was raised mostly in Kokomo but spent several memorable years of his childhood in Germany while his father served in the military immediately after World War II. He was a graduate of Kokomo High School, class of 1955. He graduated from Indiana University in 1960 and was a devoted “Hoosier” the rest of his life. He also completed the Graduate School of Banking program at Wisconsin University. Early in his career he was a builder-dealer for National Homes in Kokomo, Marion and Lafayette, moving to Lafayette in 1964 to join Price & Price, Inc. In 1967, he joined Lafayette National Bank and as assistant manager of the mortgage loan department. After 26 years in banking, he retired as executive vice president of the bank in 1983 to start a family business, Project Bike Shop/Cherry Bicycles with his son, John III and wife, Dianne. John also taught banking and real estate classes at Indiana University and Purdue University. He devoted endless hours of leadership to the Greater Lafayette community throughout his life. This included the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce, Camp Tecumseh YMCA and First United Methodist Church of West Lafayette. John was a past president of the Tippecanoe County Welfare Board and the Greater Lafayette Community Centers.
He is survived by his wife; his son, John K. Cherry, III, and his partner, Lexus, Battleground; two daughters and their spouses, Paula Dianne Koppel and Steven, Boston, Mass., and Pamela Dawn Titus and Steven, Fortville; two sisters, Kathleen A. Irwin, Kokomo, and Carolyn S. Biegtol, Greenwood; two brothers, R. Patrick Cherry, Kokomo, and Dennis R. Cherry, Denton, Texas; three grandchildren who he adored and adored him, David and Katherine Koppel, Boston, Mass., and Nicole Cherry, West Lafayette.
He was preceded in death by two brothers, Ronald and Michael; and a sister, Beverly Jo.
The funeral services are planned for 3:30 p.m. today at the Otterbein United Methodist Church, 405 E. Oxford St., Otterbein, with visitation to begin at 2:30 p.m. at the church. Pastor John Randall is officiating. Many of John’s favorite things were red. In his memory, we invite guests at his memorial service to wear something in his favorite color.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to St. Franciscan St. Elizabeth Health Cardio-Pulmonary Rehabilitation Department, 1501 Hartford St., Lafayette or Camp Tecumseh YMCA, “Making a Difference” Fund, 12635 W. Tecumseh Bend Road, Brookston, or to a charity of donors’ choice. You may sign the guest book or leave a memory at www.soller-baker.com.