Major John Wayne Tolar

Published 9:44 am Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Major John Wayne Tolar, age 66, passed away Sunday, May 28, 2023, in Columbia. He was a lifelong Mississippi native and a graduate of Columbia High School. He later studied at Hinds Community College and earned a B.S. in criminal justice from the University of Southern Mississippi.

John Wayne was a member of Society Hill Baptist Church.

John Wayne began his career in law enforcement as an elected Jefferson Davis County constable and a patrolman for the Columbia Police Department in 1980.

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He served as a constable until 1996. However, he continued to work his way up the ranks at the Columbia Police Department.

In 2009, the Columbia Board of Aldermen named John Wayne the interim police chief. He served in the position for five months and then retired from the Columbia Police Department in November of 2010.

After retiring from the police department, he went on to serve as an investigator for the Jefferson Davis County Sheriff’s Department.

Mr. Tolar was preceded in death by his parents, John “Baby” Tolar and M.E. Dyess Tolar.

His memory will be forever cherished by his wife, Delma Tolar of Oak Vale; his daughter, Wynde Tolar Chastain (Anthony) of Biloxi; his son, Jeremy Tolar of Columbia and goddaughter, Rubie McDonald.

The family received friends for visitation on Friday, June 2, 2023, from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. at Colonial Funeral Home in Columbia. The funeral processional traveled to the Jefferson Davis County Middle School Gymnasium in Prentiss, where a funeral service will was held at 11 a.m.

Rev. Tommy Broom and Rev. Paul Young officiated and burial followed at Society Hill Cemetery.

Serving as pallbearers were Ron Strickland, Luckie McDonald, Ashley Taylor, Clem Evans, Evan Price and T.C. Cooley.

Arrangements were entrusted to Colonial Funeral Home.  Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Tolar family.