Darrell M. Moss died on March 9, 2009, at Burns Flat, Okla. He was born Nov. 4, 1922 to Walter G. Moss and Ruby Taylor at Shelbyville. Darrell was the sixth of ten children, two girls and eight boys. Two children died in infancy. The family farmed at Shelbyville for several years and later moved to Southeast Missouri at Grayridge where they also farmed, and the children attended school there. The family had many stories to tell of their growing up years. The family moved to Eldred, Ill. when Darrell was in the 10th grade. He stayed with the superintendant to finish his last two years of high school. Darrell was a good athlete and remained agile all his life. Upon graduation, he volunteered for the Navy on June 6, 1942. After finishing his training, he spent his time on the USS Alabama in the South Pacific. He was honorably discharged Oct. 31, 1945. During a leave, he married Olive Corene Hood on Jan. 25, 1945.
To this union, two sons were born, Darrell W. Moss and Walter G. "Hosie" Moss III. Upon returning to civilian life, Darrell farmed for a short time. He became a heavy equipment operator and continued to do that until he was forced to retire on Jan. 24, 1983, due to a heart attack. He was a member of the Operating Engineers Union, Local 513 in St. Louis for 46 years. Darrell was always very skilled "with his hands". After retiring, he took a course in small engine repair and opened a shop and kept it open until his death. Darrell's one great love was gardening. In the spring, he could hardly wait until it got warm enough until he could get his hands in the soil. He loved the land. He often sat under a shade tree, listened to the birds, watched his garden grow, his pets frolic and play and communed with God. He liked all kinds of sports, especially baseball (the St. Louis Cardinals) and basketball. Darrell loved children, especially smaller ones. He carried bubble gum for the larger children. He was known by many as the "bubble gum man". He helped raise six of his wife's siblings until they graduated from high school. His wife once remarked that never once did she ever hear him complain. If the kids needed money, he gave it to them. He took care of his arithitic wife, uncomplaining for several years.
He is survived by his two sons, Darrell W. Moss and wife, Connie, Altus, Okla., and Walter G. (Hosie) Moss III & wife, Cathy, Burns Flat, Okla.; five grandchildren, Mark Moss and wife, Jennifer, Suquamish, Wash., Paul Moss, Gilbert, Ariz., Amber Curtis, Indian Harbor Beach, Fla., Chris Bailey & wife, Tammy, Sayre, Okla., Dustin Moss, Burns Flat, Okla.; 10 great grandchildren, one brother-in-law, Norman Hood, Bosier City, La.; three sisters-in-law, Shirley Chumbley, Rantoul, Ill., Jo Ann, Ore. and Jimmie.
Graveside services were held Friday, March 13, 2009, at 2:30 p.m. at Sentinel Cemetery with Tom Spence officiating under the direction of Whinery Savage Funeral Service.