John Dell Vance, Sr.

John Dell Vance, Sr., a second-generation native of Arizona, passed away Dec. 13, 2011, at age 80. John was born on the family farm in Gilbert, Ariz., on March 23, 1931, the son of James D. and Edna Page Vance.


He attended school in Gilbert through the sixth grade, after which he moved to Chandler. At Chandler High School, John was an outstanding football and basketball player, and a member of the Future Farmers of America. Throughout his childhood, he loved working at his grandfather's grocery store, Page Mercantile, in downtown Gilbert. John's grandfather and his family were among Gilbert's prominent founding families, and his grandfather served as one of Gilbert's first mayors.


John began farming cotton on his own in the East Valley shortly after marrying his high school sweetheart, Oneta Brooks, in 1951. He also founded his own custom cotton picking business, providing a valuable service to other farmers in the area. He served in the Arizona National Guard under the direction of Gen. Jackson Bogle and was a supervisor of the East Maricopa Soil Conservation District, as well as a member of the Arizona State Soil Conservation Board.


Other appointments included president and vice president of the board of directors for Chandler Ginning Company, member of the Maricopa County Farm Bureau, Arizona Farm Bureau and Arizona Cattle Growers Association.


John and Oneta instilled in their kids and grandkids these same values. He and Oneta gave of their time and resources in helping others. John led by example and quietly blessed the lives of many. He believed that you couldn't go wrong if you would just "Pay It Forward" without expecting anything in return.



About admin

More in: Noteworthy

From Frontdoors Magazine

Back to Top