John P. Gillenwater
John P. Gillenwater
  • August 24, 1933 - February 5, 2017
  • Hot Springs, Arkansas

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Hot Springs, AR 71913
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John Price Gillenwater Sr., died on February 5, 2017 in Hospice Care at St. Vincent’s Hospital after succumbing to multiple illnesses. He leaves his wife of 57 years, Patty (Douthat) Gillenwater; his daughter Patrice Gillenwater and partner Carol Glover of

Dallas-Ft.Worth,Texas and his son John Price Gillenwater II and his wife Johanna (Glenn) of Little Rock, AR. He leaves two grandchildren John Price Gillenwater III and Georgia Glenn Gillenwater of Little Rock. He leaves his beloved nieces and nephews; Barry Gillenwater (Dewana) of Memphis TN, Susan Grinder (Dan) of Hot Springs, Michael Gillenwater, Linda Lopez (Javier), John Gillenwater (Tricia) and Grace Gillenwater all of Memphis TN. He also leaves behind 3 grandnieces. He was preceded in death by his sister, Nita Gillenwater of Hot Springs and his brother Jim Gillenwater of Memphis, TN and his parents Roy and Louise Gillenwater of Hot Springs.

Born and raised in Hot Springs, Price was an excellent athlete and on the basketball team for the Junior Bathers. He played baseball in the minor league development system and hitchhiked many summers to New Mexico to play short-stop.

He attended Southern Illinois University on a baseball scholarship. He transferred to University of Arkansas and then again transferred to Henderson State University. He was conscripted into the US army during his HSU days and was stationed in Germany where he worked as a clerk (aka “Combat Typist”).

He returned from the Army to the University of Arkansas and while there became smitten by a red haired co-ed from Missouri named Patty Douthat. He graduated with a degree in psychology in 1959 and was an Sigma Alpha Epsilon in Fayetteville.

A yearlong courtship was followed by a memorable wedding that occurred on January 2, 1960. They recently celebrated their 57th year of a wonderful marriage.

He moved to Little Rock after college. With a family that now included two young children, Price then struck out on his own by owning/ operating car washes and several coin laundry mats.While in Little Rock, he attended Christ the King Catholic Church.

These successful endeavors allowed Price to buy JoJo’s Bar-BQ in the Levy District of North Little Rock. Price opened 3 more JoJo’s and was named best Bar-BQ restaurant in the state multiple times. Later, he and Patty opened Paradise Cafe in the Heights. He retired in 1997 and moved home to Hot Springs in 1998.

A scratch golfer, Price enjoyed playing against his many friends. During retirement, he loved attending Oaklawn Horse Races. He worked as a Red Coat for four years in the Paddock areas at Oaklawn. He was very proud of his red coat. He also was part of a lunch group that called themselves the ‘Horses A’s’…

Rosary will be recited at 6:30 pm followed by Visitation at 7:00pm Wednesday, February 8th at Gross Funeral Home in Hot Springs. Funeral Mass will be held Thursday, February 9th at 1:00 PM at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Hot Springs; internment will occur at a private ceremony at Calvary Cemetery in Little Rock on Friday.