Willard A. Jones, age 86, passed away at Hacienda Seniors home on 6 April 2018. Mr. Jones was born in Oregonia, Ohio in 1931 to Mr. and Mrs. Willard A. Jones, Sr. He was baptized in the Methodist Church in Lebanon, Ohio.
Surviving siblings are Ms. Joyce E. Jones now of Florida and Henry D. Davis of Arizona, along with many nieces and nephews in the Jones Family, brothers and sisters-in-law in the Combs family plus many wonderful cousins.
Willard graduated from Blanchester High in Blanchester, Ohio in 1949. He then served in the US Army until 1953 in the 9393rd Technical Service Unit at White Sands Proving Grounds. He completed Radar School in Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD. Following completion of his military service he attended A&MA in Las Cruces majoring in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering while working part time with Douglas Aircraft Company. He then pursued a career with the US Government at White Sands Proving Ground until his retirement. He is now member of the White Sands Pioneer Group. He received several outstanding awards for his achievements in the Calibration Laboratory.
Willard married Hester Combs in 1951 in Lawrenceburg, Indiana and spent sixty-six happy years of marriage and shared many hobbies and experiences through out the years.
He was a licensed pilot and flew with the White Sands Flying Club. He enjoyed RV’ing and converting a 40 ft Greyhound bus into a luxury motor home which they toured the US, Mexico, and Canada with a group of the South-Central Bus Nuts Chapter of the Family Motor Coach Association where all members had converted their own buses. He also belonged to the Smokey Bears Camping group and was an original member of the Three Crosses Travelers of Las Cruces.
Other hobbies included square and round dancing, motorcycle riding, having served as the NM State Director of the Retreads Motorcycle Club and a member of the BMW Sun Beemers of El Paso, TX and New Mexico; hiking and back packing in the primitive areas of New Mexico along with white water rafting/canoeing. One of his favorite things was driving, touring, and restoring antique automobiles especially his 1941 Mercury convertible. He was also a member of the Mesilla Valley Mustang Club and the Four Corners Old Car Club.
He is survived by his wife Hester, his siblings, and many good friends over his lifetime. He developed many friendships with the many caregivers he had over the last few years, The Dona Ana Home Kare, The Ambercare Hospice Group, and the wonderful caring ladies at the Hacienda for Seniors facility; and his lifetime friend and Primary Care Physician, Dr. William Baker and staff.
His funeral will be at Getz Funeral Home at 1 pm, Thursday, April 12, 2018 with graveside services with military honors to follow at Hillcrest Memorial Gardens Cemetery with Pastor Mike Dacy officiating. Honorary
Pallbearers will include, Mr. Carl Schwarting, Mr. David Peterman, Mr. Benjamin Acosta, Mr. Mark Camrud, Mr. James Klein, Mr. Thomas Lilley, and Mr. Ollah Combs.
Willard loved New Mexico and its people, he spent his adult life here by choice. He was well loved and will be missed by those who knew him.