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Harold Richards

September 1, 1923 March 21, 2016
Harold Richards
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Obituary for Harold Richards

Harold Ray Richards, 92, of Peoria followed his wife Joyce home to God early Monday morning March 21, 2016. Harold was born September 1, 1923 in Bevier, MO to Thomas C. Richards and Effie Mae Wriedt. He grew-up in Hanna City and graduated from Manual High School. Harold married Vada Mae Briggs in October 1942; she preceded him in death in 1964. He was also preceded in death by his sister, Geneva Beckham. Harold married Joyce Curtiss in April 1967 and she was his soul mate for 49 years. Joyce passed away Wednesday, March 16, 2016. Harold dropped out of the U of I to enlist in the military and served in the Army Air Corps participating in the European Campaign flying 51 missions. Harold, a tail gunner on a B24 Bomber with the 485th Bomb Group, was credited with shooting down two ME109s and was awarded four Bronze Stars, the Distinguished Flying Cross and other air medals. He was Honorably Discharged as a Staff Sergeant in October 1945. Harold was active in the local community where he served on the board at Bellevue Grade School, 2 terms on the Limestone Community High School Board and was active in numerous civic organizations. He was a longtime member of the Maxwell Road Church of God and owner/operator of the Phillips Service Station in Bellevue for 25 years before semi retiring. He then went on to work as a mechanic in the automotive section at Bergner’s and Firestone and after full retirement he drove a school bus. Harold is survived by his children, Danny (Anna) Richards of Montgomery, TX, David (Cheryl) Richards of Peoria, Nancy (Rick) Monroe of N. Ft. Meyers, FL, Timothy (Jeanie) Richards of Abingdon, Robert (Carol) Curtiss of Columbus, OH, Richard (Nora) Curtiss of Rio Rancho, NM, Ronald (Maria) Curtiss of Huntsville, AL, Leslie (Dustin) Hacker of Peoria along with 22 grandchildren; 36 great grandchildren and 3 great great grandchildren. Harold and Joyce were one of the last remaining members of the “Greatest Generation”. They will be truly missed. Cremation has been accorded and a memorial service for Dad will be held at Bartonville United Methodist Church, Thursday, April 7, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. with Reverend Nick Jordan attending. Lunch will follow. In lieu of flowers please make donations to either: Compassus Hospice, 2000 W. Pioneer Parkway, Suite 24, Peoria, IL 61615 or Alzheimer’s Association, 612 W. Glen Ave. Peoria, IL 61614.

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