March 22, 2007

(12/22/1921 – 3/12/2007)

Harold Noel Childress, 85, passed away at Manor Care, Overland Park, KS, on March 12, 2007, where he had been living 11 months.

A lifelong resident of Scotland County, MO, Harold, was born December 22, 1921, son of Lloyd E. (Jack) and Yvonne Mae (Shorty) Fryrear Childress, who lived on the family farm north of Greensburg, MO.

Mr. Childress attended rural schools graduating from Memphis High School in 1938. Growing up he was a member of the Greensburg Baptist Church and is currently a member of the Memphis United Methodist Church. Harold attended Northeast Missouri State Teachers College for two years earning a teaching certificate. He taught for two years in the Frogge School.

On April 26, 1942 Harold married Dorothy Jean Dye (the spring after Pearl Harbor was attacked). From this union four daughters were born.

During the second World War, Harold worked in the aeronautics industry in Kansas City, MO, and Omaha, NE, where he worked until VJ Day as crew foreman of the hydraulics department manufacturing B-26 Marauder aircraft. The Marauder Bomber was used in the allied invasion of Italy. Harold and his crew overhauled Jimmy Doolittle’s famous plane. After the war Harold worked as a salesman for Cook Paint and Varnish Company living with his family in Omaha and North Platte, NE, Albia, IA, and Robinsdale, MN.

Mr. Childress moved his family back to Scotland County in 1952 where he owned Childress Feed and Supply, and helped his father and brother build and operate Childress Grain Elevators in Gorin, MO. During these years Harold served on many community boards and committees including Gorin R-III School Board, Selective Service Draft Board, County Redistricting School Board, Steering Committee of Scotland County Memorial Hospital, member of Memphis Masonic Lodge #16 A.F. & A.M., Scotland County Rotary Club, Clark County Moose Lodge, Genealogy Society, Historical Society and for many years as Chairman of the Scotland County Republican Committee. Harold, a strong conservative Republican, ran for State Legislative Representative in 1970. From 1961-1972 Harold and Dorothy owned and operated Memphis Lanes. Prior to retirement Harold managed Childress Hawkins Insurance and The License Bureau in Memphis and also the Kahoka Motel, Kahoka, MO.

An athlete and avid sports fan, Harold was on the high school baseball team, catcher for the bomber plant team, helped start Little League Baseball in Wyaconda, MO, was a great bowler with a 160-180 lifetime average in league play, and was a good golfer often seen at the Timber Ridge Golf Course. In 1997 Harold threw out the first pitch on Grandparents Day at Wrigley Field, home of his beloved Chicago Cubs. Since the age of 8, Harold had been a Cubs fan.

Survivors include four daughters, Mrs. Gary (Linda) Kapfer of Scottsdale, AZ, LeAnn Carol of Lenexa, KS, Mrs. Mark (Candy) Humes of Wyaconda, MO., and Mrs. Mark (Mickey) Schaefer of Tucson, AZ; one sister, Betty Lou Frogge of O’Fallon, MO, and one brother, Larry L. Childress and wife, Sharon of Brashear, MO; two sisters-in-law, Minnie Childress of Edina, MO, and Patricia Dye of Camdenton, MO; eight grandchildren, Kolette Kapfer Abel of Glendale, AZ, and Heidi Kapfer Day of Scottsdale, AZ, Kimberly Carl Letcher of Platte City, MO, and Kevin Carl of Lihue, HI, Chris Hull of Hannibal, MO, Ken Hull of Memphis, MO, Casey Hull of Norman, OK, and Jessica Humes of Wyaconda, MO, and eleven great-grandchildren, Robert and Hanna Abel, Samantha, Harrison, and Winston Day, Jacob and Justin Hull, Michaela and Elijah Hull, Jackson Letcher, and Riley Carl.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Dorothy; one brother, Jerry W. Childress; one sister-in-law; three brothers-in-law; one niece; and one nephew.

The family has suggested memorials to Greensburg Cemetery, Slocum Cemetery, or Timber Ridge Golf Course, and may be left at or mailed to Payne Funeral Chapel, 202 E. Madison, Memphis, MO 63555.

Services were held March 17, 2007 in the Payne Funeral Chapel, Memphis, MO. The services celebrating Mr. Childress’ life were conducted by Reverend Charles Hammack and Harold’s family members. Pallbearers were Kimberly Letcher, Kolette Abel, Heidi Day, Jessica Humes, Chris Hull, Kevin Carl, Ken Hull, and Casey Hull. Honorary pallbearers were Larry Childress, Jay Childress, Gary Kapfer, Mark Schaefer, Mark Humes, and Mike Letcher. Interment was in the Slocum Cemetery west of Greensburg, MO. Arrangements were handled by the Payne Funeral Chapel, Memphis.

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