JOHNNY LAWTON SHOCKLEY
Johnny and Reggie Shockley
Christmas in Vicksburg, Mississippi
JOHNNY LAWTON SHOCKLEY
As told by
His former wife Reggie Jimerson Shockley Weeks
I didn't know much about Johnny in his earlier (Minden) years. When I met him he was playing the night clubs between Minden and Shreveport. At that time his band consisted of his brother, Buddy, (now deceased), Jimmy Pickard, and my cousin, Vernon Jones. His band members changed many times over the years as we moved from place to place. Music wasn't a "living," in those days, in order to provide for our family, Johnny began doing oil field work. That is a profession requiring frequent moves. When we lived in Shreveport his band consisted of Bobby Byrd, lead guitar, (now deceased), T.J Seaman, Steel guitar (who later became a Shreveport policeman) and Vernon Jones who played base. Wherever we lived we continued to play music. Times change and so do people. After 10 years of marriage and two children we divorced. I was told that Johnny played for a while on that show out at Keithville I believe it might have been called the Louisiana Hayride...although people said it was nothing like the original; Louisiana Hayride. From there he drifted to South Louisiana. He made one record on a label called Rotary Records. I believe it was his private label (to reflect both his careers). As the years progressed he fell victim to alcoholism and in the fast lane. In his early teens to the very end of his life, music was his first love. He was possessed of a great talent and perhaps a different pathway at some time in his life might have brought him the fame he so desired. Instead life gave him an early end to a dream unfulfilled _______________R. I. P___________ Johnny's marker reads... JOHNNY L SHOCKLEY BORN 03 SEPT. 1935 DIED 31 OCT. 1971 He is buried next to Charles Shockley, Sr. (1927-1989) in the Lane Memorial Cemetery In Sibley, Louisiana. There is also a place reserved for Evelyn J. (1932- ) Johnny was buried in the same plot as Mrs. Bertha Morgan, the grandmother of Jean Morgan Griffin. Youngsters then called her "Granny" Morgan. She lived in the 600 block of Constable St. for many years prior to her death. "Granny" was a Shockley before she married. Johnny called her Aunt Bertha. Bertha S. Morgan 22 Dec. 1895 02 Mar. 1984 Johnny and former wife, nee Reggie Jimerson were the parents of two children (one son and a daughter) I. DONNA KAREN SHOCKLEY BORN 24 NOV. 1958 DIED 16 OCT. 2009 Donna's talent was art. There is more about Donna Karen Shockley and her family ... II. MICHAEL KEITH SHOCKLEY BORN 06 APR. 1961 Shreveport, Caddo, La. DIED 31 OCT. 1997 Flagstaff, Coconino, Arizona, USA Michael's talent was cooking He was married to a lady named Jana. They were the parents of a son named II.1. SON: CAMERON MICHAEL SHOCKLEY 1. Donna Karen Shockley Applied for Marriage lic.
|Name:||Donna Karen Shockley|
|Spouse:||Wayne Harlan Collins|
|Spouse residence state:||Nevada|
|Marriage Date:||24 Nov 1979|
|Officiant type:||Religious celebrant|
|Recorded date:||6 Dec 1979|
1.1. CHILDREN OF DONNA KAREN SHOCKLEY COLLINS
Nicole and Travis Collins by 1st marriage Nicole has 2 children, Kevin and Ava Travis Collins has 1 daughter, Kaylie Collins 3 boys and 1 girl by 2nd union Tyler, Tristan, Tanner, and Nadia Pellington( deceased) .............................................................................................................................................................
Birth 3 Sep 1935
Death Oct 31, 1971 *Johnny was born Johnny Laska Shockley He hated his middle name. Laska was a "family" name passed down. When anyone asked him his full name he just gave them the name he liked, Lawton. This changing of his name began when he was a youngster. Not many people outside of his immediate family knew his real name. Michael was good looking, looked so much like Johnny . He was taller and more refined in looks. He was actually more handsome than Johnny. Donna as a young lady was beautiful, the image of her mother. For those of you with sharp eyes, did you notice that Johnny and Michael died on the same date and at the same age? Both were killed in accidents, Johnny in a car accident and Michael in a train accident. Eerie, isn't it? I never knew much about the musicians in the Minden area. My life with Johnny was very nomadic, so I lost touch with people from that area. I've lived most of my life in the West Coast. Don't have a clue where Vernon Jones is or if he is still living. Clyde Brown of Minden was my cousin. His father and my grandmother were brother and sister. They came from a family of ten children, so I have lots of relatives I have not met. I remember "Granny" Morgan and her granddaughter, Jean Morgan. She was Johnny's Aunt Bertha. Jean was living with her during her teen years. We are still friends to this day. Would be fun to attend The Minden City Cemetery Ghost Walk, I'm sure. but I don't travel much anymore. I haven't been home since 1988. I'm still as Southern as I ever was. You can take the girl out of the South but you can't take the South out of the girl! I've enjoyed this little "chat" with you. Many thanks to Mrs. Reggie for sharing her Memories of Johnny and her family with us. W. D. SHARPLING REMEMBERS JOHNNY SHOCKLEY When Johnny first started out he was more a picker than a singer. I don't recall when he started singing. I think it was when they had those talent shows that the radio station sponsored first at the REX THEATER and later moved to the old community house. John and Buddy played some live shows on the first radio station in Minden. Some people used to get him and my brother mixed up due to similar last names. They use to tell Mom they heard her son on the radio. Sammy David was a D. J. at K.A.P.K. in Minden during that time. Do any of you remember Johnny Tinnell singing at the Community House? I remember him singing "Anything" one night. JEFF TUCKER REMEMBERS JOHNNY SHOCKLEY Johnny Shockley and I were in the same 7th grade class. When we would have a class party, Johnny would bring his guitar and sing two or three songs for us. Everyone enjoyed him. He was obviously talented and his little guitar sounded great. Johnny found out I was learning to play the guitar so everyone chimed in and insisted that I bring my guitar to the next party and sing with Johnny. So I made my public performance debut with Johnny in the 7th grade and we sang "Filipino Baby" together. Johnny was cool and very calm when he performed, but I was scared to death. However, he encouraged me and I made it through. JOHNNY SHOCKLEY MADE A RECORD WITH SEARCY MOBLEY Says Reggie, Johnny's former wife, "Does anybody remember Searcy Mobley?" I didn't know Searcy Mobey and I only remember that name because it is so unique. Very different. The way I know it is because years ago I had a record with Johnny on one side and Searcy on the other. I couldn't tell you now what either of them sang. I think Johnny might have done Hank Snow's "Bluebird Island". But hey, I'm old now and too many years have passed me by. They must have either been "scouted" at one time or a promoter had them do a demo. The record was long since lost in a fire. To sad, since they are both gone. Reply: As a child I remember Searcy Mobley lived in Dixie Inn and may have gone to the Antioch Baptist Church. He also married a girl who was living in Dixie Inn around 1949/50.