Wednesday, October 20th, 1943 - Friday, February 8th, 2019
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After a short-term illness, John Elwood Berry made his transition on February 8, 2019. John was born October 20, 1943 in Gary, Indiana. After graduation from Roosevelt High School in 1961, John attended Michigan State University where he earned a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Administration in 1966. John was a founding member of The Long Beach-Inglewood-South Bay Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, a member of The Lancaster Palmdale Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi and an avid supporter of its Guide Right Program at Antelope Valley College. He continued to be a devoted Kappa brother throughout his life.

John earned a Master's in Business Administration at California State University in 1968 and a Masters of Science and Industrial Relations at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles in 1973. His teaching career began at California State University and spanned more than 43 years at a variety of schools including Purdue University, the University of Southern California and Antelope Valley College where he ended his teaching career and retired in 2008.

On October 18, 2003, John was blessed to marry Pearline McFadden. For 20 years, Pearline and John enjoyed vacationing to different places and traveling around the country to visit many of the college students that he was mentoring.

He will be remembered as an outstanding college professor who was appreciated and praised as a mentor for hundreds of young men and women that he helped to obtain college admissions, scholarships and/or grants allowing them to attend Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) and other institutions of higher education.

John was preceded in death by his mother, Marian Constance Berry and his fathers, John Berry and John Palmer. He is survived by his wife, Pearline; step sons - Jonathon (Michelle) Lang, and Jason Lang; granddaughters - Lili and Roxi; sisters - Cynthia (Mamon) Powers Jr.; Joann (Alvin) Washington, Cheryl Anderson, Donna Bodie, Patricia (James) Eggleston, Michelle Johnson, Gail (Jeff) Larson and brother - Michael Palmer. He also leaves a host of other loved ones including nieces, nephews, cousins, friends, students and colleagues who will cherish his memories.

Arrangements include viewing at Halley Olsen Murphy Funeral Home, 44831 N. Cedar Ave., Lancaster, CA 93534, Friday, February 15, 5PM - 8PM and services at Growing Valley Baptist Church, 44818 N. 20th Street West, Lancaster, CA, Saturday, February 16, 10:30AM.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Lancaster/Palmdale Guide Right Program, 41747 62nd Street West, Palmdale, CA 93551 (This program is designed to assist college bound youth.)
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, February 15th, 2019 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm
    Friday, February 15th, 2019 5:00pm - 8:00pm
    Halley Olsen Murphy
    44831 Cedar Ave
    LANCASTER, CA 93534
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Odies H. Williams III, M.D.

Posted at 10:34am
To my Dear friend Cynthia and Family,
Can you believe it? Seventy years of friendship! John and I met when we were about five years old at Church of God in Gary, Indiana, home of the Jackson Five. I recall that John’s dad was the choir director and his mother sang in the choir. John is my brother from another mother. We were always in competition. While in our late teens, John completed one thousand sit ups in three hours. Of course, I did one thousand five. Middle names. Don’t you love them? “Hey Henry”, John would say. My reply, “Hey Elwood.” Wow! Remember 24th and Jackson Street, while playing catch in the driveway? Cheryl was born.
I can recall being in the scouts with John. We were/are lifelong friends. While in high school John had 3.69 grade point average. Mine was 3.01. Yes, John you beat me there. Okay Nupe I know that you are at peace. On that note. Get it? I will see you when I get there.
Odies H. Williams, III, M. D. AKA Trumpet Player

William Gilmore

Posted at 11:23pm
My condolences to the Berry families. I'm sorry to hear about the loss of dear John. Some Bible scriptures that have helped me during times of loss include Isaiah 26:19 and Psalm 37:28,29 which states in part: "Your dead ones will live...They will rise up". And the Bible also says "The righteous themselves will possess the earth and they will forever reside upon it". Therefore the Bible promises that we may be reunited with our loved ones lost in death by means of an earthly resurrection. This is possible thanks to Jesus Christ's ransom sacrifice. Thus we have a genuine hope of everlasting life in a world without wickedness or suffering.

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