|Published in The Enterprise 9 June 2017|
Merlin Ralph Myers, 84
Merlin Ralph Myers, age 84, of Blair, passed away on Monday, June 5, 2017, at Crowell Memorial Home after a long battle with Parkinson’s Disease.
Memorial services will be 11:00 a.m. Friday, June 9, 2017, at the Rush Family Chapel in Onawa, Iowa, with Evangelist Dale Wolf officiating. Burial will follow in the Whiting City Cemetery, Whiting, Iowa. Military Honors will be provided by the Emery Johnson American Legion Post #481 of Whiting. Visitation will be 10:00 a.m. until service time on Friday, June 9, 2017, at the Chapel. Arrangements are under the direction of Rush Family Care Service in Onawa, Iowa.
Merlin was born on March 23, 1933, in rural Monona County, Iowa to Ralph Leo and Anna Irene (Ketchum) Myers. Merlin was raised in Whiting, Iowa and was baptized at the Whiting Church of Christ when he was 12 years old. He attended Castana and Whiting Schools and graduated from Whiting Community High School in 1951.
Merlin married Phyllis Joan Whitehorn of Onawa, Iowa, at the Naval Air Station Chapel in Pensacola, FL on June 6, 1954. The couple was blessed with three children: Karen Marie, Anthony Jay and Crystal Larae. The family lived in Missouri Valley, Onawa and most of their life in Whiting, Iowa. Merlin and Phyllis moved to Blair in 2000.
Merlin retired from Northwestern Bell Telephone Company in 1984 after over 32 years as a telephone technician. He later enjoyed numerous jobs within the Whiting Community including Owner/Operator of Myers Trenching Service and Myers Telephone Service, a janitor at the Whiting Community School, a laborer at ANSCO Seed, a lawn mowing service and at the Extension Office in Anthon, Iowa. He also attended Semi-Truck Driver’s School and drove across the country for several years.
Merlin was associated with three different branches of the military: Navy, Marines and Air Force Reserve. In the Navy, he was trained as a medic and was stationed with the Marines in Japan and Okinawa during the Korean War. Later, he became a member of the Air Force National Guard and was stationed in Sergeant Bluff, Iowa, for several years. He was also a life-long member of the American Legion.
As an Amateur (HAM) Radio Operator (KA0QZK), he attained the “Extra” Level. One of the highlights of this endeavor was being able to converse with the Cosmonauts and Astronauts on the MIR Space Station as they orbited the earth. While stationed in Okinawa, Merlin taught English to the school children and was a Football Team Manager. He was also a Roller Rink Floor Manager, Sunday School Teacher, Community Santa Claus and an avid Chess/Checker player.
Survivors include his wife, Phyllis Myers, of Blair; children, Tony (Melanie) Myers of College Station Texas and Crystal (Dave) Zima of Blair; grandchildren, Nicole (Joseph) Hewitt of Wilton, Iowa, Jake Harding of Castana, Iowa, Karleigh Zima of Ann Arbor, Mich., Makenzie Zima of Blair, Jonathan (Kriston) Meeks and Vanessa Romero both of College Station, Texas; and great-grandchildren, Aiden and Oliver Hewitt of Wilton, Iowa, and Jolene and Lyla Meeks of College Station, Texas. He is also survived by his sister, Joyce (Burnell) Harding of Turin Iowa, several in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins and dear friends.
He was preceded in death by his daughter, Karen Marie Harding; his parents, Ralph and Anna Myers; three brothers, Charles, Ben and Russell; a sister, Marilyn Harris; his mother-in-law, June Whitehorn; a niece, Jan Griffin; and a great-niece, Ashley Griffin.
The family would like to express their sincere appreciation for the loving and patient care extended to Merlin over his 8 1/2 years at Crowell Memorial Home in Blair.
Condolences may be left online for the family at www.rushfamilycareservice.com.
~~~ Obituary courtesy of the Washington County Genealogical Society. Newspaper clippings on file in the Blair Public Library at Blair, Nebraska.~~~