John W. Kennedy, Jr., 89, of Pontiac, passed away Thursday, November 19, 2020, at 4:50 p.m. at OSF St. James John W. Albrecht Medical Center in Pontiac.\r\n\r\nA private family service will be held at a later date with burial at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, IL. Duffy-Baier-Snedecor Funeral Home in Pontiac has charge of arrangements.\r\n\r\nJohn was born May 28, 1931, in Peoria, IL to John W. and Marion M. (Carnahan) Kennedy. He married Maureen M. Engel on June 25, 1955. She passed away on April 14, 2018.\r\nHe is survived by his children, David W. (Coleen) Kennedy and Thomas A. (Jeana) Kennedy, both of Pontiac, IL; grandchildren, Mitch Kennedy, Katie (Ben Riekkoff) Kennedy, and Matt (Rachel) Kennedy; and great grandchild, Harper Kennedy. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Maureen; and sister, Sarah "Sally" Kennedy.\r\n\r\nJohn was a graduate of Pontiac Township High School, class of 1949. After graduation, John volunteered for service in the United States Army from 1951 to 1954. He served during the Korean Conflict stationed in Taegu Korea which formed part of the Pusan Perimeter. John attained the rank of Staff Sergeant and was honorably discharged.\r\n\r\nJohn graduated from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, receiving a degree in automotive mechanics. John worked as a mechanic for several years at Everett M. Bailey Bus in Pontiac. He also received his certification as a "Doctor of Motors" from the Perfect Circle Piston Ring company of Hagerstown, Indiana. In the early 1960s, John was employed by the Toledo Peoria and Western Railroad. He worked as an agent/operator at many agencies from Peoria, Illinois eastward. He eventually held seniority at the Fairbury Agency on the 3p11p shift. John learned telegraphy, which was required for employment on the railroad, from his father-in-law, Art Engel.\r\n\r\nIn the middle 1960s, John started his plumbing apprenticeship at Smith's Plumbing and Heating of Pontiac, Illinois. Upon completion of that, he was recommended for membership to the Bloomington Local #99 of United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters of the United States and Canada. He ended his membership upon his death after 48 years of good standing. John's son, Tom Kennedy and his grandson, Matt Kennedy continue this tradition today.\r\n\r\nJohn was a member of First United Methodist Church in Pontiac, the American Legion and VFW of Pontiac. He enjoyed travelling with his wife, Maureen and vacationing at their cabin in Matanzas Beach, Illinois. He attended public auctions throughout Illinois and was well known by many auctioneers. John loved his dog and companion "Cooter", leaving provisions for him to be taken care of after John's death.\r\n\r\nMemorials may be made to the Livingston County Humane Society, 21179 E. 1358 N. Road, Pontiac, IL 61764.\r\n\r\nOnline condolences may be made to the family at duffyfuneralhome.com or visit us on Facebook.