John Jessie Barnett, affectionately known as “Jessie”, “Johnny 911”, and “Chevron John” Barnett died peacefully in Renown Hospital on May 13, 2017, in Reno, Nevada at the age of 78.
“Jessie”, as he was called by his sisters and mother, was born Tuesday, March 21, 1939, in the Missouri Ozarks, (Mark Twain National Forest) at Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri, to John Franklin Barnett and Edna Lorene (nee Garrison) Barnett. The family moved to the Parma, Idaho area while his father was stationed overseas in Europe. His father passed away in 1947 when Jessie was 8, after coming home from the war with a Head Tumor.
The family relocated again to Salida, CA and then to Modesto, CA to be closer to his mother’s family. He graduated from Modesto High School in (1957) with a diploma. He met and married Emma Torres Oliver in 1961. John worked for CVC Cannery warehouse, in Ceres CA at the time. Over time (1962 to 1966}, the couple welcomed 3 boys. John became a journeyman meat cutter and worked for his brother in law, Bill Robinson (RIP), at Bills Budget Meats running the meat department at the Modesto (Maze Blvd) and Stockton CA stores.
Time and Contributions in Chelan
After divorcing in 1978, John followed a friend’s (ole Mr. Pratt’s) trail to Washington State and Lake Chelan to pick fruit and re-establish himself. He went to work For Dave and Linda Marsh at Valley Crest Orchards. He also secured part time work as a bartender at Dales Tavern, working for Beverly Darnell. John’s sons soon followed after school was out in California (summer of 1979). That’s when John went full time at Dales and moved the family into downtown Chelan. John worked for 15 years at Dales. He then went to work for the Chevron Company in Chelan.
His final 10 years of work was for Amarillo Wind Machine of Amarillo TX and Entiat WA as a Blade Fabricator. John Retired in 2006, moved to New Mexico in 2008, and then to Reno, NV in 2009 where he lived out his life with his companion Wanda.
John was accomplished at drawing and often drew apple and cherry blossoms, and could draw just about anything. He was responsible for drawing and filling in all of the creeks and drainage on the Big (Iconic) Picture of Lake Chelan as you walked into Dales Tavern. He Loved his Red Beers, Pepsi Cola, gambling, his Pall Malls and Lucky Strikes.
John was also very excited to tell his sons about the local Chelan kids, who during the late 70s, all of the 80s, and early 90s came home from college and the armed services and on weekends to have their first legal, local beers served by “Johnny 911” at Dales. He was an accomplished crossword puzzle enthusiast and poet. He had an amazing vocabulary and gift of words and meanings that he learned from crosswords and his love of reading.
A Memorial and Celebration of Life is scheduled for Saturday, June 3, 2017, at 4 p.m. at the Middle Tavern/Senor Frogs in Chelan, WA, with a potluck dinner and live music to follow. If you knew John, went to Chelan High School with John’s boys, got gas from John, got wind machine blades from John’s work, was served by John at Dales, even if you got 86-ed from the bar by John, you are invited.
Please contact Marsha Novich (509) 630-6037 or Lisa Rodriquez (509) 630-2471 for any questions concerning the local planning and potluck for John’s Celebration of Life. The family would like to thank Renown Skilled Nursing Facility and Renown Hospital’s staff of Reno, NV for their kind care and dedication to John’s comfort during his illness. John’s scattering of ashes will be private.
In Lieu of flowers, the family has set up a GoFundMe account to help with his final expenses, boarding, and transportation of family to Chelan. https://www.gofundme.com/johnjessiebarnett-memorialfund
John is survived by his (30 year) companion Wanda Bond, of Reno, NV, his Sons, John Anthony (Tony) Barnett and (Deidre) of Benicia, CA James Andrew (AJ) Barnett of Redmond, WA and Joel Adam (Joel Breath) Barnett of Modesto, CA, five granddaughters, Alicia, Chelsea, Jessica, Emily, and Christina Barnett, all residing in the Seattle/Tacoma Area, six great grandchildren, Ariana, Reyna, Elena, Amayas, Atlis and Raidin, his sister Jo Anne Hovland of Reno, NV, loving nephews Jack Robinson of Phoenix, AZ, Robert Robinson of Chino Valley, AZ, and Troy Kellet of Nevada, his first wife and mother of his sons, Emma Oliver of Modesto, CA and all of the Oliver Family, his former brother and sister-in-laws (11), and nieces and nephews (30+) all of the Modesto CA and Oklahoma State area. He is preceded in death by his Father (1947) and his Mother (1971), his sister, Virginia Lee Barnett (2016) and his Nephew, Kevin Franklin Barnett (2014).
(Submitted by Tony Barnett)