John S. Copeland

Published 11:43 am Monday, August 28, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

WINDSOR – John Staley Copeland, 83, passed away on Aug. 25, 2023 at Sentara Obici Hospital of Suffolk surrounded by loved ones. John was the son of the late Galvin Staley Copeland and Annie Virginia Babb Copeland. Predeceased by his siblings, Royce Copeland (Sue), Willie B. Copeland and Brenda Kennedy (Bill).

John was a lifelong resident of Windsor. He graduated from Windsor High School, where he met his beloved wife and best friend of 62 years, Nelda Garris Copeland. John dedicated his life as a farmer tending to the fields of JNC Farms, a historic family-owned farm of 114 years. He was a lifetime member of Colosse Baptist Church, where he served as a trustee, deacon and a member of numerous committees. He was a steward of the land and devoted his life to the Lord, family and friends. John made a lasting impact and will be greatly missed. He leaves behind cherished memories and a legacy that will be treasured by all those who loved him.

John is survived by his wife, Nelda; his children, Jenel Sterling (David), Gail Hunter (Victor) and John C. Copeland (Heather); three sister-in-laws, Emogene Babb (Jimmy), Nola Mumford (Roger) and Patsy Copeland; his grandchildren who lovingly referred to him as Papa, Amber Williams, Anthony Jones, Amanda Benton, Elizabeth Murry, David Hunter, Johnathan Copeland, Taylor Hunt and Christina Copeland; 10 great-grandchildren; as well as numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

A graveside service will be held on Saturday, Sept. 2, at 11 a.m. at Colosse Baptist Church Cemetery with the Rev. Tim Webb officiating and assisted by the Rev. Wayne Blythe. Friends may join the family at the Church Fellowship Hall following the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions be made to Colosse Baptist Church Building Fund at 6361 Rhodes Drive, Windsor, VA 23487. R.W. Baker & Co. Funeral Home and Crematory, downtown Suffolk Chapel is serving the family. Condolences may be registered at