Paul E. Jones, 76, of Benton went to be with the Lord Wednesday, Dec. 5.
He was born Aug. 18, 1936, in Ridge Top, Tenn., to the late John L. and Estelle Jones. Growing up in middle Tennessee, the family, including the children, grew and processed tobacco for the market.
Immediately after graduating from White House High School in 1954, Paul joined the U.S. Marine Corps and served from 1954 to 1963, including a tour of duty in Southeast Asia and another in Japan. Serving in the military afforded him the privilege to attend Arkansas State Teachers College (now University of Central Arkansas) on the G.I. Bill. He played football and baseball for the Navy in Millington, Tenn.
After college, Paul worked briefly for General Electric in North Little Rock.
He loved the outdoors, so he changed careers and began working in the automobile business. He started this career with Lee Vaughan Buick, Pontiac located in Little Rock. He eventually owned and operated Paul Jones Buick, Pontiac, GMC. He enjoyed his work, meeting people and treating his customers like family. Imprinted on his dealer stationary was “Where making a deal is a handshake.”
On June 4, 1959, Paul married Joann Wallace of North Little Rock. Along with family and friends, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in June 2009 at a celebration hosted by their children at their home.
In 1968 Paul was honored by membership in the Sales and Marketing Executive Club and received the Distinguished Salesman’s Award. He received numerous citations and plaques commemorating his sales ability.
The people with whom he worked became his extended family, but he was always competitive. A person’s nationality, race, education or social class was not important to him. He hugged everyone.
He enjoyed playing sports, coaching and as a spectator, especially watching his son, Jamie, and two grandsons, Jackson and Jake, and two granddaughters, Jo Beth and Josie. He coached the Future Panthers Cardinal football team and Benton Little League Baseball for several years. He enjoyed fishing, quail hunting and spending time with his family at Greers Ferry Lake.
As a member of First Baptist Church in Benton, he served as an usher, a Sunday School teacher and on many committees.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a grandson, Jordan Guerra; a sister, Margaret Eggstein; and a sister-in-law, Dorothy Jones.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Joann Wallace Jones of the home; two daughters, Terry Guerra and husband John of Mt. Ida and Paula Grasse and husband Jimmy of Bryant; a son, Jamie Jones and wife Gina of Benton; six grandchildren, Janie Cundiff and husband Jason, Taylor Toney, Jackson Guerra and wife Samantha, Jo Beth Guerra, and Josie and Jake Jones; two great-grandchildren, Julie Anne and John Cundiff; three brothers, John Jones of Detroit, Mich., Maxey Jones and wife Pearl of Hendersonville, Tenn., and Harold Jones and wife Rhonda of Greenbrier, Tenn.; a sister, Martha Carpenter and husband Claude of Atlanta, Ga.
Funeral service is scheduled for 10 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 8, at First Baptist Church Selph Hall in Benton with Dr. Richard Grant and Brother John Guerra officiating. Entombment will follow at Rest Hills Memorial Park in North Little Rock.
Serving as pallbearers are Rhett Tracy, Tommy Jumper, Steve McGuire, Jackson Guerra, Jimmy Grasse, Jamie Jones and Bart Turbyfill.
Visitation is set from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7, at Roller-Ballard Funeral Home in Benton.
Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church Youth Ministry, 211 S. Market St., Benton, AR 72015, or Alzheimer’s Association, 1202 Main St., Suite 215, Little Rock, AR 72202.
Online guestbook: www.rollerfuneralhomes.com/ballard