Eugene's Story

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Eugene "Gene" L. Blackford, 94, Carthage, Mo., passed away early Monday morning, May 1, 2017, at the Missouri Veterans Home, Mt. Vernon, Mo. Eugene "Gene" Blackford was born November 10, 1922, in Carthage, to the late Henry C. Blackford and Frieda (Stevenson) Blackford.
He married Eva "Louise" Keltner in 1947; she preceded him in death on July 27, 2010.
Gene was a World War II veteran, serving in the army in the South Pacific from 1942 to 1946. He worked 33 years for W.R. Grace Fertilizer and Chemical Plant before retirement. No matter what, he always tried to stay busy.
Gene was a lifetime bowler. He bowled at Star Lanes, Bowl-a-Rama, Plaza Lanes, and 4th Street Bowl. Gene was inducted into the Bowler's Hall of Fame in 2012. He was a lifetime member of the American Legion Post 322, VFW Post 7630, Elks Lodge. He loved fishing and he loved dancing at ATA Hall. In their earlier years, Gene and Louise were members of the old Lakeside Community Church, and later became members of Christ's Church of Perseverance, Joplin. Gene lived a very long and fruitful life.
Loved ones that preceded to Heaven before him were his wife, Louise Blackford; his parents, Henry C. and Frieda (Stevenson) Blackford; two brothers, Charles W. Blackford and Joseph A. Blackford; one sister, Marcella Crutchfield; and one great-grandson, Marshall Eugene Sprague III.
Survivors include six children, Kenneth (Sandy) Blackford, Wayne (Sue) Blackford, Robert (Mary) Blackford, Edward (Belle) Blackford, Emma (Clif) Farris, and Ernie (Karen) Blackford; 16 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be held 6-7 p.m., Friday, May 5, at Knell Mortuary. Funeral services will be held 10 a.m., Saturday, May 6, at Knell Mortuary. Minister Tom Black will officiate. Interment will follow the service at Oak Hill Cemetery, Carthage.
Memorial gifts are suggested to Missouri Veterans Home, in care of Knell Mortuary, 308 West Chestnut, Carthage, MO 64836.
Online condolences may be expressed through www.knellmortuary.com.
Arrangements are under the direction and personal care of Knell Mortuary.
Published on May 3, 2017
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