John P. Ellis

John P. Ellis, 72, of Washington, IL, passed away Tuesday, January 19, 2021, at his home surrounded by his loving family.

John was born on December 21, 1948, in Peoria, IL, to his mother Edith (Curt) Powell and his father LaVerne (Reita) Ellis. He married Karen I. Matheny in 1968.

Karen survives along with one daughter, Shelly (Terry) Cunningham; two sons, Steve Ellis and Mike (Cathy) Ellis; four granddaughters, Chris (Carl) Burress, Sarah (Jesse) Brubaker, Shelby (Aaron) Carey, and Hayley (Jarrett) Kerker; four adorable great-grandchildren; two sisters, Teresa Miller and Laura (David) Loveday; two nephews, Scott (Kim) Glickman and Craig (Peggy) Glickman.

John was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, LaVerna (Jerry) Glickman and Carol Lamb; and one son, Little John.

John worked for Caterpillar in East Peoria as a research mechanic for 35 years before his retirement in 2002. Following his retirement, he worked at Allen Transportation Service in Washington as a school bus driver for 17 years.

You could often find John at a dirt track watching stock car races or enjoying NASCAR on TV in his free time. After raising his kids, he cared for four Yorkie puppies over the years, spoiling them just as much. He was an early riser, a coffee lover and endlessly teased his wife.

John found his greatest joy when spending time with his family. His family has been blessed to have his constant love and support. Whether it was support in hard times, sound advice or even a helping hand when projects arose, his family knew he would be there.

A graveside service will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, January 23, 2021, at Swan Lake Memory Gardens in Peoria. Pastor James Frye will officiate. There will be a celebration of life planned for the spring, a date to be determined. Mason-White Funeral Home in Washington is assisting with arrangements. To share a memory or send a condolence for his family, visit