DeForest Ratterree, 90, Nevada, Mo., passed away Thursday, Oct. 17, 2013, in Joplin, Mo., following a brief illness. He was born May 18, 1923, in Huggins, Mo., to Thomas Jefferson Ratterree and Lucy Jane Watts Ratterree.
DeForest was raised in the Huggins and Cabool, Mo., area and graduated high school there. He served in the United States Army from March 1943 to November 1945 and was stationed in the South Pacific. During his service he was awarded three Bronze Stars. DeForest spent 34 years in the National Guard, more than 30 of which were spent at Camp Clark in Nevada, retiring as "Officer In Charge" in 1976. He was a member of First Baptist Church of Nevada, and longtime member of PBO Elks No. 564, Nevada.
He was married to Helen E. Briggs and from this marriage three children survive, Robert D. Ratterree and his wife, Dorothy, Topeka, Kan., Mary Jane Hinkle and her husband, Milton, of Sheldon, and Debbie Carlson and her husband, Steve, Topeka. Also surviving are one stepdaughter, Pam Nicodemus, state of California; eight grandchildren, Robert Ratterree Jr., Chuck Ratterree, Randy Hinkle, Lisa Hinkle, Laura Allen, Amber Miller, Brian Carlson, and Lori Budd; stepgrandchildren, Sean Nicodemus, Molly Culwell, Derek Ellis, and Alex Ellis; five great-grandchildren; one sister, Ivy Mullins, Willow Springs, Mo.; and numerous nieces, nephews and close friend and companion, Marilyn Entrikin. He was preceded in death by two wives, Pauline Nicodemus and Blanche Ricketts; daughter, Deanna Dally; stepson, Bob Nicodemus; four brothers, Art, Claude, Earl, and Lee Ratterree; two sisters, Jewell Mullins and Nona Watkins.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, Oct. 21, at Ferry Funeral Home, Nevada, with the Rev. Hubert Fox officiating. Interment with military rites will be held at 12:30 p.m., in the National Cemetery, Fort Scott, Kan. The family will receive friends from 10-11 a.m., prior to the service.
Contributions may be made in his name to the First Baptist Church, Nevada.
View obituary and send condolences online at www.ferryfuneralhome.com