John G. Roberts Jr. was ushered into heaven encircled by the tender devotion of family and in the loving arms of the woman he called "my beautiful wife," Dawn Guild Roberts, on Friday, July 22, 2016.
Roberts was the cherished father of Lynn Gerwitz (Randy), Susan Senick (Scott), Shannon Briggs (Edward) and Brian Roberts, whom he loved unconditionally and who were unfailingly by his side in the final days of his life. His beloved son, John III, into whose embrace he was surely delivered, predeceased him.
Roberts was eternally grateful for the blessings of his precious grandchildren, Stephen (Christina), Krystina, Eddie, Tiffany, Chelsea, Katie, Scott and Amanda; his great-granddaughter, Jenna; the gift of his brother, Charles; the extended family and friends who enriched his life with immeasurable joy; and to his former wife, Carole, with whom he shared his children. He was dearly loved and will live forever in the hearts of all the Guild Girls, to whom he was father-figure, brother, confidante, guardian angel and lifelong friend.
Roberts began his career working at International Paper and moved on to Johnny Ryan Distributing, where he launched the beginning of a vast network of friends.
He went on to establish Lewiston's renowned Apple Granny Restaurant in 1975, which he nurtured successfully for 40 years until his retirement in 2015. Among the many awards presented to him on behalf of Apple Granny were the Niagara Falls Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year Award in 1992, Greater Lewiston Business and Professional Association Businessperson and Business of the Year in 2001, the 2007 Calvin Hotchkiss Award by the Lewiston Historical Association, and inclusion on the USA Today/Rand McNally Best Small Towns in America - Best for Food top five list in 2013.
Roberts loved his Apple Granny family, and it was very important to him that they felt valued and respected. He greeted everyone he knew with a smile, handshake, hug or kiss, and had a way of making everyone around him feel special. His sense of humor and his big, infectious laugh will be sorely missed.
Roberts' ashes will be interred with those of his grandparents, his parents, and his son in a private graveside ceremony today, which would have been his son's 56th birthday. A public celebration of John's life will be held at Lewiston No. 1 Volunteer Fire Co., 145 N. Sixth St., Lewiston, from 4-7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 15.
In lieu of flowers, donations in his name may be sent to The Elephant Sanctuary (27 East Main St., Hohenwald, TN, 38462, or www.Elephants.com); Niagara Hospice, or Lewiston No. 1 Fire Co. Contributions would be greatly appreciated.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Hardison Funeral Home, North Fourth and Ridge streets, Lewiston. Visit www.hardisonfuneralhomes.com for online condolences.