Army veteran, former commander of the Ohio American Legion honor guard, to receive full military burial


(Tribune News Service) – For years, as the Commander of the Combined Honor Guard of US Legion Station 218, Johnny Paynter has been tasked with providing veterans with a proper military funeral service.

Now he will receive the same treatment.

Paynter, a U.S. Army veteran who served as the commander of Post 218 in Middletown for a year, died at the Butler and Warren County Hospice on Sunday. He was 77 years old.

After Paynter resigned his post as Commander of the Honor Guard for health reasons, Paul Hannah took over the role. Without Paynter’s leadership, Hannah said the Honor Guard could have been disbanded.

“He saved him,” said Hannah, 73.

Hannah said two members of the American Legion honor guard will watch over Paynter’s casket during the service. An American flag will be folded and presented to a family member, followed by a set of Taps and a 21-gun salute, Hannah said.

“We want to give him and his family a final greeting,” Hannah said.

Paynter, a member of the American Legion for 22 years, worked as the President of Civil Rights / EAP at Armco / AK Steel before retiring.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Betty Paynter; children Matthew (Paula) Paynter, Michael Paynter and Deanna Paynter; sister Patty (Frank) Durden; sister-in-law Jeannie Paynter, Judy Paynter and Janet Paynter; and many grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his parents, brothers Malcom (Janet) Paynter, Clarence Paynter, Chester Paynter, Marion Paynter, Stanley Paynter and Ronnie (Darlene) Paynter; sisters Joann (John) McGee, Barbara (Arnold) Dennis and Mary Lou (Ralph) Carroll.

Visitations will be from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Baker-Stevens-Parramore Funeral Home, 6850 Roosevelt Ave., Middletown. The funeral will take place immediately after. Donations can be made to Middletown Combined Honor Guard in memory of Paynter.

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(Christopher Muncy / US Air Force)


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