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John Gibbs, 72, of Brighton, Mo., died Friday afternoon, July 26, 2019, at his son’s home in Bolivar, Mo.

He was born October 16, 1946, in Raytown, Mo., the son of John Kenneth Gibbs, Sr. and Lois Olive (Biggerstaff) Gibbs. On March 16, 1973, in Kansas City, Mo., he married Peggy Ann Odell and she survives of the home.

John was a 1964 graduate from Raytown High School and obtained a teaching degree from William Jewel College. He then received a Master of Science from Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg. John was a successful coach at three high schools in Missouri before taking his dream job as a college coach. He served 22 years at Peru State College, Nebraska, where he is the men’s basketball all-time wins leader. He led the 1993 and 1997 PSC teams to the National Tournament and these teams are ranked first and second in PSC history for single season wins. Beyond his basketball impact, John was an ambassador for PSC and the communities it served, being instrumental in the fight to keep PSC in Peru. For many years, he served as a National Camp Director for Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He taught at Dallas County R1 for 10 years before retiring in 2013.

John was passionate about working with youth and he made the most of every opportunity to coach and lead his players and students. Besides his influence as a teacher and coach, his impact has been felt by many, through basketball camps, Sunday school classes, Peru community sports, FCA, the Peru Parents program, or simply his friendly personality. John was a talented man who had a variety of interests including music, cinema, history — especially the Civil War, and sports — especially golf and ping-pong. He also loved camping, traveling, driving his convertible, attending athletic events, and spending time with his family, especially his wife. John was a member of the Auburn Christian Church, Auburn, Nebraska, where he served as an Elder. He was currently a member of Brighton Baptist Church, Brighton, Mo.

In addition to his wife Peggy, survivors include three sons, Shawn Gibbs (Audrey), Harrisonville, Mo.; Scott Gibbs (Melissa), Bolivar, Mo.; and Brett Gibbs (Noelle), Nixa, Mo.; a daughter, Julia Bowen (Nathan), Windsor, Mo.; 10 grandchildren, Jacob Gibbs, Elizabeth Saffels (Mason), Hannah Gibbs, Natalie Gibbs, Gideon Gibbs, Joshua Gibbs, Kailin Gibbs, Annabella Gibbs, Gabrielle Gibbs, and John Gibbs; a great-granddaughter, Naomi Saffels; three sisters, Jan Burden (Karl), La Centre, Washington; Patra Mason (Chuck), Memphis, Tennessee; and Debra Koehler (Dirk), Henschtal Germany; and several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and a host of friends, fellow coaches, and former students and players. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by Stewart and Norma Wine, whom he thought of as parents.

Funeral services will be 2:00 p.m. Thursday, August 1, 2019, at the First Baptist Church, Windsor, Mo., with Rev. Dave Lockard officiating. Burial will be in the Laurel Oak Cemetery, Windsor. The family will receive friends before the service at the church from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. The family suggests contributions to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in care of the Hadley Funeral Home, Windsor. Condolences maybe be left online at

Nemaha County Herald

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