Billy Gene Clark, of Springfield, MO, passed at his home on March 20, 2023, after a short illness.
He was born in a farmhouse outside of Faxon, OK. on November 12, 1935, and was raised by his mother, Lola Clark and step-father, Roy Clark. He was the oldest of seven children in a farming family where he learned to work hard and was well-regarded in the community.
Billy moved to Kansas in 1954 to live with his uncle and aunt, Dewey and Flossie Jennings. He graduated from Turon High School the following spring, in 1955. He became a Christian while attending Turon Assembly of God and could still describe the feeling of peace he felt that day 68 years ago.
He married Martha Capell in 1957, and they lived in Pratt, KS. where he drove a delivery route for a local bakery. Son Billy Dean was born in 1958 and the family moved to Hutchinson, KS where son David Neal arrived in 1961.
Billy worked for Montgomery Ward and then as a machinist and foreman at Cessna (Eaton Corp), where he retired after 35 years. He drove a school bus for 18 years after retiring.
He was active in the Hutchinson First Assembly of God congregation as a bus driver, usher, teacher, and deacon. He also ministered at the local jail, nursing homes, and volunteered to help whenever a need presented itself. After retirement Billy served at churches in Belton, Joplin, Carthage, and Springfield, MO.
After losing youngest son, David, to an auto accident in 1981, the trauma experienced during that time became a source of comfort that Billy was able to share with others who were going through the same anguish.
In 2011, Billy and Martha were living in Joplin when an F5 tornado destroyed their home along with much of the city. They sheltered in a bathtub, praying fervently, as the roof rose and fell above them. A move to Carthage followed where Martha, already in poor health, passed away a few months later.
Billy lived alone in Carthage, a very sad man, until meeting Janet Hoff, who he married in 2017. He credited Janet with saving him from his loneliness and thanked God for bringing her into his life. The couple moved to Springfield, MO in 2019.
Billy is survived by a brother, Jimmy, his wife Janet, son, Bill, and four grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his mother, stepfather, wife Martha, son, David, five siblings, and many other friends and relatives.
Billy Gene Clark will be remembered as wonderful husband, father, grandfather, and friend. He always looked for the best in people and was a faithful giver of his time, finances, and encouragement.
His greatest desire was to run a strong race and finish in heaven. He believed nothing else was more important and wanted the same for his family, friends, and coworkers. Well done, good and faithful servant.
Funeral services are scheduled in Joplin, Mo at Mason-Woodard Mortuary on Saturday March 25, 2023 at 2:00 pm with Rev. Tom Wright officiating. The family will receive friends at 1:00 pm prior to the service. Graveside service at Memorial Park Cemetery in Hutchinson, KS will be Monday March 27, 2023 at 2:00 pm with Rev. John Chastain officiating.
Arrangements are under the direction of Mason-Woodard Mortuary & Crematory Joplin, MO.