John Garland

Obituary of John Garland

John Gregory Garland passed away on March 31, 2023 in Lebanon, TN at age 75. He is survived by his wife of 37 years, Emily Sadler Garland; children: Gregory (Ashley Creviston) Garland and Lindsey (Robert Bryan) Garland; grandchild: Corey Garland; siblings: Paula Kovar, Lynford (Patricia) Garland, twin sister Susan Cobb, and Wendy (James) Winks; numerous nieces, nephews, and in-laws, and dogs Rusko and Ellie. He is preceded in death by parents Grace Smith Garland and Paul Phillip Garland. 

John was born and raised in Grand Rapids, MI. He attended Michigan State University before going on to serve in the United States Army and Army National Guard from 1966-1972. He was a lifelong supporter of the Boy Scouts of America, as an Eagle Scout as well as a troop leader for Troop 624 in Nashville, TN. He volunteered for the organization until 2017. John spent most of his professional life in the restaurant industry, working in risk management for Godfather’s Pizza, Burger King, Shoney’s, and O’Charley’s. However, he considered his dedication and love for his family—his “bestest buddies”—as his greatest accomplishment in life. John shared his passion for travel and adventure with his wife and children through family vacations to destinations such as Alaska and Kenya. He developed an interest in photography and enjoyed creating photo albums and collages with snapshots from memorable trips and events with his family. In his later years, he took great joy in his role as “Gramps,” spending time with his two “granddogs”—Rusko, a chocolate lab, and Ellie, a toy poodle, who he called “Ellie-Bellie”—and his beloved grandson Corey. Those who knew him remember him as a man who was warm, sociable, goofy, and above all, generous with his time, love, and affection. He will be greatly missed.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday April 8, 2023 at Lemmon Funeral Home in Cockeysville, MD. Visitation will take place at 10 o’clock, followed by a service at 11 o’clock and burial at Sherwood Episcopal Church. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Boy Scouts of America in his memory. (

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