A Celebration of Life Service will be held 11 a.m. Friday at New Hope Baptist Church with Dr. Ned Buckner officiating.
Friends are invited to attend a visitation immediately following the service.
A private burial will be held prior to the service at Gaston Memorial Park.
John was born March 15, 1924, to the late George Scott Grice and Mary Maggie Benton Grice.
He served with the 20th Troop Carrier in Panama and played professional baseball for 11 years, playing for the Detroit Tiger farm affiliate in Little Rock, Arkansas and ending his career with the Charlotte Hornets baseball team. John also loved playing golf and was a member of the Gaston Country Club.
John and his wife Kate built their first skating rink in January 1961. Naming the facility "Kate's Skating Rink," he fulfilled his promise to put her name up in lights if she would marry him.
Always active in their church and having a love for children, they dedicated the rink to the youth of Gaston County. This past year they celebrated their 50th year of providing fun, safe, family recreational facilities to families in North and South Carolina, as their children and grandchildren con-tinue their legacy.
John and Kate have been active members at New Hope Baptist Church for over 40 years, where he served as a Deacon and Sunday School teacher. He was also a life member of the Lowell Masonic Lodge.
Mr. Grice is survived by his loving wife of 64 years, Kathryn Reece Grice, better known as just "Kate;" son, John W. Grice Jr. and his wife Jan; daughter, Barbara Grice Thompson and her husband, Phil; seven grandchildren: Kathy Gould and her husband, Scott, Robbie Summey and his wife, Amanda, John Grice III and his wife, Ashley, John Brett Summey, Bonnie Orr and her husband, Jon, Billy Thompson and his wife, Gina, and Stacy Benson and her husband, Chad; seven great-grandchildren, Mazzy, Gabe, Owen, Piper, Chaney, Cohen and Gaines, with Rya Kate and John IV expected in August and September. He is also survived by his three sisters, Catherine Arrowood, Dorcas Murphy and Sally Wooten.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Gaston Hospice, PO Box 3984, Gastonia, NC 28054 or to New Hope Baptist Church, 2024 Redbud Dr., Gastonia, NC 28056.
Arrangements handled by Benson Funeral Director Lic.