Obit: Darling, Earl "Smokey" (1917 -
Contact: Shari Hahn
Surnames: Darling, Fradette, Ormond, Gallaher, Alsterberg, King, Walz
----Sources: Marshfield News-Herald, April
Darling, Earl "Smokey" (9 Jan. 1917 - 2 March 2007)
Earl 'Smokey' Darling
NEILLSVILLE -- Earl "Smokey" Darling, age 90, went to his final rest March 2, 2007, at The House of The Dove Hospice in Marshfield.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, April 21, 2007, at the Gesche Funeral Home in Neillsville, Wis. Visitation will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday, April 20, and also from 10 a.m. to service time Saturday, both at the funeral home.
Serving as honorary casket bearers for Earl will be Kathy (Ormond) Phillips, David Kloba, Christine (Gurney) Kugel, Travis King, Brian Darling and Jennifer (Walz) Tallman.
He was born Jan. 9, 1917, to Ellen Ann King and Fred Merrill Darling.
He started working at the young age of 16 and had many jobs. He worked with the crew that paved Highway 73 for the first time. He was part of the crews that built many drainage ditches and dams west of Neillsville, Wis. He hauled brick and built the post office.
On May 1, 1934, at age 17, he joined the National Guard. He was part of the 128th Infantry Service company that later made up their part of the 32nd "Red Arrow" Division. He was on the War Bond Tour in Louisiana when he married Lorraine B. Fradette on Feb. 21, 1942, in Natchez, Miss. He left to join World War II shortly thereafter. He left from San Francisco to Australia and then on to New Guinea. He served in the Pacific Theater of the war. He left active duty as a master sergeant Aug. 4, 1945, and the National Guard on June 21, 1950.
After service, he had a milk route for a time and then worked for the Clark County Highway Department until his retirement in 1981.
After retirement, he enjoyed planting flower gardens at his home on Fifth Street. He enjoyed feeding the birds and squirrels. He also enjoyed his family and helping them when he could.
He is survived by six children, Susan (Ted) Ormond, Betty Darling, Margaret (Bill Gallaher) Alsterberg, Lynn (Joe) King, James (Kay) Darling, Missy (Dale) Walz, 17 grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 63 years; both of his parents and both of his brothers.
From Earl's family to the staff and all volunteers at the House of the Dove, Marshfield, thank you. There are no words to express our thanks for making Earl's last eight months peaceful and comforted by all of you. God bless and keep each and every one of you. You are "Earth's Angel's." We will never forget.
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