Thursday, May 25, 2017

Charles Fitzjohn

(From Campbell-Biddlecome Funeral Home)

Charles “Shorty” Fitzjohn, 86, Formerly of Racine, MO passed away May 23, 2017 at Mercy Hospital in Joplin after an illness.

Charles R. Fitzjohn was born July 30, 1930 in Newton County, MO the son of James and Gladys (Higginbotham) Fitzjohn. Charles served his country in the United States Army. He formerly worked as a mechanic at McDonald Douglas in Tulsa and was a farmer.

Charles R. Fitzjohn married Corrine (Kitty) Fetter August 5, 1960 in Litttleton, CO and she preceded him in death in November of 2008.

Survivors include one brother, Gordon Fitzjohn, Wichita, KS and several nieces and nephews.
Charles was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, his sisters, Phyllis McClary, Shirly Ayers and Meriam Pound; his brother, Ronald Fitzjohn.

Graveside services under the direction of Campbell-Biddlecome Funeral Home, Seneca, MO will be held at 11:00am, Saturday, May 27, 2017 at the Burkhart Cemetery with Jedidiah Seely officiating.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Bob Larson

(From Clark Funeral Home)

Robert ‘Bob’ Larson, age 68 of Neosho, entered into rest on May 19, 2017 at his home in Neosho, following an illness. 

 Robert was born April 10, 1949 in Tulsa, OK, the son of Loyal and Margie (Ketchum) Larson. He retired from Cardinal Scale as a machine tool mechanic. He enjoyed fishing, camping, hunting and the outdoors. He was a member of the Faith Baptist Church. 

 Robert and Donna (Senneker) Larson were married on Oct. 16, 1971 at Denver, CO and she survives. Additional survivors include four children, Michael Larson of Neohso; Kevin Larson and wife, Jill of Neosho and Alan Larson and wife, Cindy of Neosho and Joey Larson of Kansas City, MO; two sisters, Marilyn Sarratt and Sandy Jordan, both of Neosho; eight grandchildren and two great grandchildren. 

Memorial services will be held at the Faith Baptist Church, Neosho, MO. Saturday, May 27, 2017 at 2:00 pm. Pastor Frank Ward will officiate.

Services are under the direction of Clark Funeral Home, Neosho, MO.

Thad Leach

(From Parker Mortuary)

Riley Thad "T Bone" Leach, age 94, Joplin, passed away on Sunday, May 21, 2017 at Joplin Gardens.

Thad was born on March 13, 1923 in Joplin, son of the late Harley Leach and Mable Jobe Leach. He graduated from Joplin High School in 1942, and served in the United States Army during World War II, where he was stationed in the Philippines. He was discharged with the rank of Staff Sergeant. Thad was a well known baseball player in this area, having signed a professional contract with the Boston Red Sox, and he also played for the late Joe Becker. He played on the first Sunny Jim team that played at Gabby Field.

He worked for Texaco Oil for over 30 years in their sales department, living in the Kansas City area. After retirement, he returned to Joplin where he enjoyed playing golf, and was a member of the Joplin Golf Club. He was also a member of Community Chapel Church of Joplin.

He married Betty L Mosbaugh on July 3, 1948 in Joplin, she preceded him in death on October 24, 2005, after 57 years of marriage. He was also preceded in death by his brothers, Robert Leach, Buck Leach, Bill Leach, and a sister, Leona Miller.

He is survived by several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be Tuesday, May 30, 2017 at 3:00 p.m. in Parker Mortuary Chapel with Pastor Jeff Jones officiating. Interment will follow in Carl Junction Cemetery with full military honors.

Thad requested that memorial contributions be made to his church, Community Chapel Church, 2740 E. 26th Street, Joplin, MO 64804.

Wilbur Largent

(From Mason-Woodard Mortuary)

Wilbur Eugene Largent was born on August 22, 1926, in Strasburg, Illinois. Wilbur grew up in Southern Illinois attending several different schools due to his father’s sales routes, actually attending eight different schools during his eighth grade experience! Wilbur graduated from Effingham High School in 1945. Wilbur met Mildred Largent and they married in August, 1947 at First Baptist Church in Effingham, Illinois. Wilbur and Mildred were married for sixty-nine years.

Wilbur and Mildred lived in Springfield during their early marriage and were instrumental in developing the Springfield Baptist Church where they were charter members.

Wilbur was a veteran of World War II. After his discharge, he was hired under a veterans program with the Illinois State Architect’s Office as a draftsman. Wilbur began his professional career as an Electrical Engineer under the State Architects professional guidance. After a few years, Wilbur sought new opportunity for his growing family and enlisted a St. Louis employment company to find him a job “somewhere” and that “somewhere” ended up in Dallas, Texas.

Wilbur began specializing in large commercial electrical design plans with several well-known design firms. Wilbur was a key factor in the development of the First National Bank building which, at that time, was the tallest building west of the Mississippi River, the GM assembly plant in Oklahoma City, Dallas City Hall, and Dallas’s first “Hollywood” studio where the movie Silkwood was produced as well as overseas projects. For six months, he lived in Paris while designing the electrical system for a hospital for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Wilbur’s last foray into electrical design was a nationwide remodeling of the Black Eye Pea restaurants. Wilbur was President of the North Texas Illuminating Society and won several awards for lighting design. Wilbur also owned and operated an Insurance agency and served as an independent electrical systems consultant for many years. Wilbur was an active Deacon in his church and he enjoyed serving as a Scoutmaster for the Circle Ten Council in Dallas. He was past President of the White Rock Kiwanis Club in Dallas. In Joplin, Wilbur was active in supporting Forest park Baptist Church’s mission programs and served on various building committees. He served as town treasurer for Loma Linda, Missouri. During his retirement years in Joplin, Wilbur enjoyed cars, fishing, genealogy and was a self-proclaimed “news junkie”.

Wilbur was preceded in death by his wife, Mildred Largent, his sister, Norma Jean Suiter. He is survived by his son, George W. Largent and wife Mary of Joplin; his daughter, Carolyn M. Dickinson and husband Alan of El Dorado, AR; three grandchildren, Lanell Huffman and husband Howdy of Campo, CO; John Dickinson and wife Karen of San Francisco, CA; Lydia Norvell and husband Jon of Bull Shoals, AR. Eight great grandchildren, two great-great grandsons and one great-great granddaughter.

Monetary gifts rather than flowers may be given to missions at Forest Park Baptist Church.

Special thank you to the staff at Spring River Christian Village for their love and compassionate care.

Funeral services are scheduled for 1:00 p.m. Friday at Mason-Woodard Mortuary. The family will receive friends from 12 p.m. to service time at the mortuary. Burial will follow at Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Mason-Woodard Mortuary & Crematory.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Barbara Tatum

(From Knell Mortuary)

Barbara J. Tatum, 77, Carthage, MO, passed away early Monday morning, May 22, 2017 at Freeman West Hospital, Joplin, MO. Barbara Jean Cearnal was born July 3, 1939 in Lamar, MO to the late Paul Cearnal and Maxine (White) Cearnal. She graduated from Golden City High School, Class of 1957. Barbara married Robert Eugene Tatum on April 12, 1975 in Morgan Heights, MO; he preceded her in death on December 27, 2014. She worked at Schreiber Foods in Carthage for 26 years. Barbara was a member of the Dudenville Methodist Church, Dudenville, MO.

Survivors include one daughter, Jennifer Comer (husband Mark), Joplin, MO; one son, Michael Tatum (wife Michelle), Carterville, MO; four stepchildren; one sister, Vickie Troutman (husband Don), Alba, MO; and four grandchildren, Riley Comer, Gabby Tatum, Savanah Tatum, and Xander Tatum.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, and one brother, Robert Cearnal.

Visitation will be held 6-7 p.m., Wednesday, May 24, 2017 at Knell Mortuary. Funeral services will be held 10 a.m., Thursday, May 25, 2017 at Knell Mortuary. Rev. James Lee will officiate. Interment will follow the service at Park Cemetery, Carthage. Memorial gifts are suggested to the American Heart Association – Go Red for Women in care of Knell Mortuary, 308 W. Chestnut, Carthage, MO 64836. Online condolences may be expressed through Arrangements are under the direction and personal care of Knell Mortuary.

Max Clevenger

(From Derfelt Funeral Home)

Max Leroy Clevenger, age 57, passed away Monday morning, May 22, 2017 at his home following an illness.

Mr Clevenger was born March 11, 1960 in Joplin, MO His parents were Virgil Leroy and Shirley Marie (Williams) Clevenger. He was a lifetime resident of Joplin.

He worked with his father operating Clevenger and Son Tire Company, Joplin, MO and later in Galena, KS. His favorite pastime was fishing and going to the casino.

He is survived by one son, Max L Clevenger Jr, Joplin; one daughter, Augusta Clevenger, Joplin; his father, Virgil Leroy Clevenger, Grove, OK; one sister, Terrie Clevenger, Lamar, MO; three grandchildren, Payton Clevenger, Levi Russell and Danielle Russell; and 3 nieces.

He was preceded in death by his mother, and one brother, Virgin Leon Clevenger.

Funeral services will be at 6:00 pm, Thursday, May 25, 2017 at Derfelt Funeral Home, Galena, KS. Following the service, the family will receive friends at the funeral home until 8 pm.

Diana Stapleton

(From Simpson Funeral Home)

Diana Carol Stapleton, age 80 of Webb City, Missouri passed away on Saturday, May 20, 2017 in Grove, Oklahoma.

She was born on July 28, 1936 in Webb City to Paul Harris and Lillie (Pratt) Harris. Diana was a Webb City High School graduate, worked at Mount Hope Cemetery, Emmanuel Baptist Church, and Sacred Heart Catholic Church. 

She married Walt Stapleton on September 14, 1952 in Webb City and he preceded her in death on April 30, 2003. She is survived by her sons, Steven Stapleton and wife Ronda of Carthage, Tony Stapleton and wife Jean of Grove, Oklahoma, Sean Stapleton and wife Lucretia of Springfield; a daughter, Michelle Shaw of Neosho; 10 grandchildren, 17 great grandchildren, and 1 great great grandchild. Many memories were made and many memories were shared, she will be greatly missed by her family and friends. 

The family will have a celebration of life service at a later date. She will be buried along with her husband at Mount Hope Cemetery in Webb City. 

Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Simpson Funeral Home in Webb City. Visit for online condolences.