John Ernst, 88, of Boonville, passed away in his home Monday, Sept. 14, 2020.

Visitation for John will be from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Friday, Sept. 18 at Howard Funeral Home. Celebration of Life will begin at 11:30 a.m. following the visitation with Steve Watson and Russell Cobb officiating. Burial will follow in Moniteau Evangelical Advent Church Cemetery.

John Ernst was born July 17, 1932, the son of John Ernst and Gertrude Zimmerman. He married the love of his life, Beverly Ernst, on Feb. 18, 1951 in Polo. John was known for many things; he had an extensive career in law enforcement. He was with the Cooper County Sheriff’s Office from 1985 to 2001. During that time he was awarded the Missouri State Reserve Deputy of the year in 1992 and was appointed as Cooper County Sheriff’s Office Marijuana Eradication Officer in 1992. He was inducted into the Missouri Sheriff’s Association and was also a certified sniper. He was a Howard County Reserve Deputy from 2000 to 2012.

John also served in the United States Army, where he received a purple heart, two bronze Service stars in Korea, Combat Infantry Badge and UN Service Medal. John was able to go on the Central Missouri Honor Flight and loved it. He talked about it all the time and enjoyed telling all the stories and memories made on that trip. He was a member of the American Legion, VFW, and the Odd Fellows lodge group. John loved to be busy and tinker with anything and everything.

He enjoyed woodworking, cutting gems, and panning for rubies, traveling, and taking in the scenery. He would refinish things and make knives. John had a mechanical mind and could look at something and fix it. If he did not have it and wanted it, he would just create it himself. He also loved to hunt — anything involving shooting a gun he enjoyed. He would watch Nascar but was a big fan when Carl Edwards raced. John even taught himself to make homemade cakes and decorated them to give to people. He was a family man and loved the time he got to spend with them. He was loved and will be dearly missed.

John is preceded in death by his parents: John and Gertrude; wife, Beverly Ernst; son, Johnny Ernst; son-in-law, Mark Moore; and brother-in-law, Jerry Critz. He is survived by daughter, Sandi Moore of Boonville; daughter-in-law, Donna Ernst of Boonville; brothers: Carl Henry (Shirley) Ernst of Jefferson City, Don (Elaine) Ernst of California, Missouri; sister, Geraldine Critz of Columbia; grandchildren: Michael (Jessica) Moore of Boonville and Tyson (Lindsey) Moore of Lee’s Summit. Also surviving are his great-grandchildren: Alese, Caleb, Owen, Levi, and Heidi.

Memorial contributions are suggested to the Central Missouri Honor Flight. Online condolences may be left at www.howardfh.com.