John Joseph Moore, affectionately known as “JJ,” slipped away peacefully on Sunday, October 4, 2020, at home, after a long illness.
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JJ, 69, was born August 28, 1951, in Philadelphia, PA. He graduated from West Philadelphia High School in 1970 and obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Health, Physical Education and Recreation from Shaw University, where he also pledged Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc. JJ was a proud alumnus of Shaw as well as brother of Groove Phi Groove. He often wore that pride emblazoned across his favorite T-shirts.
After graduating college, JJ served as a lieutenant in the United States Navy, from 1976-1990. He worked for the Moral Welfare and Recreation (MWR) department as a Recreation Specialist in Cuba, New York and Norfolk, Virginia, before retiring in 2017. He was indeed a renaissance man.
JJ’s skill as a masterful African American Folk Art Woodcarver afforded him the pleasure of sharing stories with young and old. He also built an elaborate train set that he shared with elementary school students and young-at-heart adults. His work is on display at the Shaw University Museum, Hampton University Museum and at the Jordan Newby Public Library in Norfolk, VA
He was very civic-minded and volunteered with various groups such as the Chess Nutzs Knights Network, which teaches juveniles in Norfolk and Hampton detention centers how to play the game of chess. He also volunteered to help clean up during Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Louisiana.
He followed in his father's footsteps as an active 3rd Degree Mason and was a Junior Deacon at Unity Lodge #93.
The avid tennis player never forgot his Philadelphia roots. He played on the basketball and football teams at West Philadelphia High School (WPHS) and was a member of the WPHS Alumni Association. He also lettered in all three previously mentioned sports.
Last, but not least, as a member of Shiloh Baptist Church, JJ faithfully served for several years as head of the bus ministry and continued to provide educational experiences for young and old through his woodcarvings during Black History Month and other special celebrations.
He leaves to cherish his memory, a devoted wife, Valencia White Moore; two daughters, C. Moore, and Toneiko Holloway, Goldsboro, N.C.; two grandchildren, Dakeem and Sir Tauria; two sisters, Peggy Moore, Philadelphia, PA, Diane Blakely (Thomas) Winston-Salem, NC; brother, Julius Moore, Sandersville, GA; two aunts, Ruby Moore Clark, College Park, GA, Readith Moore, Philadelphia; two sisters-in-law, Debbie White, Norfolk, VA and Sharon White, Charlotte, NC; and a host of a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Willie Mae (Jordan) and Willie Lee Moore, and a brother, Lee Arthur Moore.
We will miss our beloved JJ dearly, but we know that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord!