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In Memory Of Our Poets

Marilyn McNeill (Johnson) - Class Of 1963

Marilyn Jane McNeill Johnson, 79, passed away on March 27, 2024, at her home in Foley, Alabama surrounded by a loving family. Marilyn was born on January 5, 1945, in Brewton, Alabama to Jesse and Wilma (Jernigan) McNeill. She was preceded in death by her parents and her husband Jim Johnson.

Marilyn grew up in Montgomery, Alabama, and graduated from Sidney Lanier High School. During her high school years, she was a lead majorette with the Lanier unit of the Junior ROTC.

After high school, Marilyn attended Graceland College in Lamoni, Iowa, before she came home to Montgomery to marry her high school sweetheart Burrell Shewmake. They had two beautiful daughters Lesleigh and Laurie.

Later, Marilyn decided to continue her college education. She graduated from Huntingdon College with a BS in Library Science and then went on to Florida State University to obtain her Master's degree in Library Science. She served as the librarian at Bellingrath Elementary and Brewbaker schools before retiring. Marilyn was also a published poet.

A close friend introduced Marilyn to Jim Johnson, a dashing retired Air Force officer thinking they would be a perfect match. They were! Marilyn and Jim married in 1983. In 1996, they moved to Foley, Alabama to enjoy retirement on the Gulf Coast. They had 38 happy years together before Jim passed in 2021. During her retirement in Foley, Marilyn enjoyed community activities like The Newcomers Group, china painting, and traveling out West.

Marilyn was active in her church all her life. She grew up in Montgomery, Alabama, and was baptized in the Community of Christ Church. She attended youth camps and reunions in Brewton, Alabama, Bluff Springs, Florida, and other congregational activities.

While living in Foley, Marilyn and Jim attended Brownsville Assembly of God, Church of His Presence, and Anchor Point Church.

Marilyn is dearly loved by her family and many friends from childhood through adulthood. She was a light in the lives of all who knew her. She will be deeply missed.

Marilyn is survived by her daughters Lesleigh (Don) Batchelor of Atlanta, Georgia and Pensacola, Florida, and Laurie (Rick) Ingle of Montgomery, AL and Foley, AL; her brother Ben (Jo) McNeill of Pine Level, AL and Fairhope, AL; her grandson Derrick (Megan) Shonk, Jr, of Wetumpka, AL; her granddaughter Catherine (Harrison) Graves of Wetumpka, AL; her great-grandsons Barrett Graves of Wetumpka and two more soon to be born; her step-daughter Jennifer (Jack) Joyce of Montgomery, Texas; step-children Evelyn (James) Johnson of Magnolia, Texas; James (Ingrid Pahl-Marquez) Joyce of Dubai, UAE; Natalie (Jimmy Singh) Snell of Conroe, Texas; step-grandchildren Teagan Shane Johnson, Devin James Johnson, John Colemen Joyce and Jacob Nolan Joyce; Grand-aunt Gloria Jernigan of Gulf Breeze, Florida; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Services will be held at Leak Memory Chapel on Saturday, April 6, followed by interment in Greenwood Cemetery. Visitation will be held at 9 am and services will begin at 10 am. Arrangements have been entrusted to Leak Memory Chapel, 945 Lincoln Rd, Montgomery, AL 36109. If interested in donating on her behalf, we recommend https://swallowingdisorderfoundation.com/ or her local church Anchor Point Church, Foley, Alabama.

A visitation for Marilyn will be held Saturday, April 6, 2024, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM at Leak Memory Chapel, 945 Lincoln Road, Montgomery, AL 36109, followed by a funeral service at 10:00 AM.