John Thomas Ferree, 85, passed away on Friday, March 10, 2017 after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. A longtime resident of Newport News, he was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph and Mattie Ferree, son David Thomas Ferree, brother Joseph Ferree, son-in-law Michael Plott, and great-granddaughter Cayden Gracie Smith. He was known to most as Tom, though those close to him knew him as “Mopey”.
Tom’s lifelong passion was baseball. He graduated from Warwick High School in 1949 and was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers, going on to play minor league baseball for about two years before becoming a family man. After 42 years of dedicated service, he retired from the Newport News Shipyard as Cost Engineering Supervisor. He also volunteered for the Republican Party, assisting many political figures (including Herbert Bateman among others) with their campaigns. Tom was a faithful and devoted member of Temple Baptist Church for over 50 years. His grandchildren brought him the greatest joy and he was a doting and beloved grandfather and great-grandfather.
Tom is survived by his loving wife Colleen Ferree; children Joseph “Joey” Ferree (Sheridan), Deborah Plott, and Kathryn Whitely (Roger); brother Paul Ferree (Sandra); grandchildren Karen Watson (Dave), Kevin Plott, Logan Ferree, Jessica Whitely (Matt Richman), and Joshua Whitely; great-grandchildren Dylan Peterson, Lily Watson, Hayden and Halle Plott, and Parker Richman; as well as a host of nieces and nephews. A funeral service officiated by Pastor Wes Taylor will be held at Temple Baptist Church on Thursday, March 16 at 1pm with a reception at the church to follow. Interment at Peninsula Memorial Park will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Temple Baptist Church, 235 Harpersville Rd., Newport News, VA 23601. The family would like to extend their sincere thanks to the staff of James River Convalescent and Rehabilitation Center for their outstanding care and kindness. Riverside-Altmeyer Funeral Home is assisting the family.
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2017
Time: 1:00 pm
Temple Baptist Church
235 Harpersville Rd.
Newport News, VA 23601
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