John Robert Merrill

December 22, 1933 ~ March 21, 2020 (age 86)


Bro. John Robert Merrill, 86, of Columbus, Ohio was peacefully called home to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Saturday, March 21, 2020. Bro. Merrill was a God-Fearing Man who loved to serve in the Ministry of Helps throughout his entire life in the service of the Lord. A Loving and devout husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, he not only exemplified…but lived a Godly life.He was affectionately known as Bobby and Johnny to many. Bro. Merrill met and married the Love of his Life of 63 years, Barbara Carole Williams-Merrill. The Lord blessed their union with four lovely children. 

Bro. Merrill was the third child born to Mr. and Mrs. Alvin and Lillian-Terrance Merrill in Bridgeport, Ohio on December 22, 1933. He was educated in the Columbus Public School System. He served in the United States Navy during the Korean War and was honorably discharged. He spent his formative years in the “Renown Flytown Neighborhood” a community of love, family and lasting friendships.  Bro. Merrill was a valued and trusted employee of Columbus and Southern of Ohio Electric Company (AEP), spanning a career of over 40 years, after which, he retired. He was also employed part-time for 20 years at Buckeye Optical (Pearl Vision) in Columbus, Ohio and a part-time employee of Thrifty Car Rental.

Bro. Merrill accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior in February,1961 at The Church of Christ of the Apostolic Faith, located at that time on Washington and Donaldson Streets in Columbus, Ohio, under the pastorate of the late Bishop Karl F. Smith. In his latter years at The Church of Christ of the Apostolic Faith, located at 1200 Brentnell Avenue in Columbus, Ohio, Bro. Merrill remained consistent in his commitment to serve others with joy.  He humbly and graciously served on several ministries. He was an usher and a greeter for many years.  He also served on the security and food pantry ministry.   He lived a life of service to God and humanity according to Ecclesiastes 9:10, “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.” Bro. Merrill was a loving husband, father, brother and friend to all who knew him.  He will be remembered for his generosity, his kindness and his smile.  He never met a stranger.  

Bro John Merrill is preceded in death by his parents, Alvin and Lillian Merrill, sisters, Beverly Bradford, Delores Lash, and Jeanne Thomas. Bro. John Merrill leaves to cherish his memory, His Beloved Wife and Caregiver, Evangelist Barbara Carole Merrill, Sons, Robert T. (Shawn) Merrill, Brian D.(Avis) Merrill, Sr., Eric E. (Babette) Merrill ,MD, Chesterfield, Va., Daughter, Kim D.(Harold) Smith, Brother, William Merrill , Sister, Constance Carroll . Eighteen grand-children and forty-one great-grandchildren.  A host of other relatives, friends and members of the Church of Christ of the Apostolic Faith.

Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.  Interment: Dayton National Cemetery.


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