John Young



Sept 14, 1942 - Sept. 2, 2023

John Lee Young, Jr. was born in Drew, Mississippi to Christine Knox Young and John Lee Young on September 14, 1942. Shortly after his birth, Christine passed. Seven years later, he moved to Asheville with his father and his wife Paris Dixon Young, who was his loving and devoted mother until the day she passed away.


John grew up in Asheville and made many memories in academics, athletics, and the community. He graduated from Stevens-Lee High School in 1962 where he was one of the first black students to attend Biltmore Technical College (now UNC Asheville). Following graduation, he began working at Wachovia Bank in the mailroom. In 1965, John was drafted to serve in the Vietnam War but chose to enlist in the Air Force. He received an honorable discharge after four years of service and relocated to Winston-Salem.

In October 1969, he met Lois Anne Hanes. They married in June of 1970. That year he also received an associate degree from LaSalle University (Chicago). Time moved on and they were blessed with two daughters, Shonta-Lee and Okeyma Elizabeth. John continued his education at Winston-Salem State University, completing a Bachelor of Science degree in 1974. In 1978, he became a broker realtor.

Through the years, John was a devoted husband, father, friend, volunteer, coach, and he sang in the tenor section for various choirs. He spent many days and evenings playing tennis, bowling, volleyball, racquetball, running track, dancing, singing, traveling, double deck pinochle, scrabble, and bid whist. His most favorite pastime was playing golf, working in the yard, and building decks. He loved the outdoors.

Many of his lifelong friends shared his same interests including a passion for WSSU Rams, Winston-Salem Road Runners, The Twin City Choristers (TTCC), and the Washington Redskins until the Carolina Panthers stole his heart.

After 38 years of service, John retired from Wachovia Bank and Trust Company which gave him more time to be an active, faithful, and dedicated member of The Twin City Choristers. For over 40 years, he served in various offices but served as President for over twenty. His passion for singing led him to join the Chancel Choir, Mass Choir, and the Men’s Chorus at First Baptist Church where he also served in various positions. John also sang with the Winston-Salem Symphony Chorale, the WSSU Alumni Choir, and The Winston-Salem Community Choir.

In 2008, he was inducted into the Stevens-Lee Hall of Fame along with several of his very close friends and classmates.

John is survived by his loving and devoted wife, Lois, who served as his primary caregiver during his fight with prostate cancer and then Lewy Body Dementia; his two daughters, Shonta-Lee Sellers (Eugene) of Indiana and Okeyma Wright (Bruce) of Winston-Salem. He was a loving Grandfather to three grandchildren, Jordan Keymari, Syan Rai, and Nevaeh Paris; He is also survived by Kenneth Young (LaShaunda) and their three children; extended family Sherri and Madison Murrell and a host of other family in Illinois, Missouri, Wisconsin, Mississippi, Washington, Maryland, and New York.

Special appreciation to Trellis Supportive Care, the nurses, pastoral counselor, and social worker that came by weekly and daily to provide care and support.

A memorial service will be held at 11 AM, Saturday, September 9, 2023 at First Baptist Church, 700 Highland Avenue, Winston-Salem, North Carolina. There will be no public viewing. Services entrusted to Clark S. Brown & Sons Funeral Home.