Mervin Eugene (Perry) Eddington


Mervin Eugene (Perry) Eddington, 84, of Columbus, Kan., passed away 3:45 a.m. Thursday, January 26, 2017, at the Mercy Hospital in Joplin, Mo., following an illness.
Mervin was born August 19, 1932, in McCune, Kan., to Roy Earl and Marie (Allen) Perry. He was later adopted by John Franklin and Nellie Edith (Everitt) Eddington of Rural Hallowell, Kan. Mervin attended Columbus schools and graduated from Columbus High School with the class of 1951.
After leaving high school, Mervin stepped in the boxing ring and became the Joplin Golden Gloves Boxing Champion in his light weight division. Then on January 4, 1952, Mervin felt the call to serve his country and enlisted in the United States Army serving three years and three days of active duty. Mervin served with the 82nd Airborne Division during the Korean War. He was in the Division's Parachute Maintenance Company. Mervin worked on packing, repair and maintenance of personnel and cargo parachutes and aerial supply equipment, loading and securing cargo in aircraft, ejection of cargo in flight, and recovering of parachutes and aerial supply equipment. Mervin rose to the rank of Pfc(T) and was decorated with the Parachute Badge and National Defense Service Medal. On January 6, 1955, Mervin left active duty and spent the next five years in the United States Army Reserve QMC until January 3, 1960.
Upon leaving active duty, Mervin joined the International Associating of Bridge, Structural, and Ornamental Iron Workers. During Mervin's years as an iron worker, he traveled around the world erecting radio towers for the United States Air Force and building high rise towers until he was hurt on the job September of 1971.
In 1973, Mervin moved back to Rural Hallowell with his bride, Cleda Detmars (Howell) Eddington, who he met and married March 3, 1957, in Emporia, Kan. Mervin and Cleda settled on a farm near Hallowell and started farming and ranching. Mervin's cattle became his pets and he became especially fond of Mabel, April, Wanda, and Orphan Annie. Orphan Annie is still with us and resides at a farm in Oklahoma being cared for by Mervin's niece, Vicki Pribble.
In April 2013, Mervin, now a widower, moved to the town of Columbus and took up residence at Autumn Place Apartment 108.
Mervin is survived by his brothers, Melvin Leroy Eddington, of Oswego, Kan., Marvin Wayne Cline and his wife, Dollie, of Devore, Calif.; sister, JoAnn Watts, of Galena, Kan.; three step-sons, James Howell and wife, Sylvia, of Irmo, S.C., Bill Howell and wife, Lavern, of Irving, Texas, and Jerry Walthan, of Wichita, Kan.; 13 step-grandchildren; several step great-grandchildren, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins that admired and loved him dearly. Mervin was preceded in death by his wife; his biological parents; his adopted parents; brothers, Earl Ray Perry and Frederick Emmett Perry; sister, Violet Virginia Perry; step-sons, Bob Howell and Tommy Howell; step-daughter, Martha Tomlinson.
Per Mervin's wishes, his body is to be cremated and his remains commingled with his wife's remains and scattered in Cherry Creek in Cherokee County. A memorial and monument will be set at the McCune Cemetery in McCune, Kan.
Cremation arrangements are under the Direction of Bath-Naylor Funeral Home in Columbus.
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Published on January 29, 2017
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