Richard James “Short” Wilson, age 90, of Colo, Iowa, died Thursday, August 28, 2014, at his home in Nevada, Iowa.
Funeral services will be held 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, September 2, 2014, at the United Methodist Church in Colo, with Pastor Lewis S. Flanigan officiating. Burial will follow in the
Colo Cemetery, with military honors by American Legion Post #139. Visitation will be held at Ryan Funeral Home in Nevada on Monday from 5-7 p.m.
Born February 5, 1924, in Colo, Iowa, Richard James “Short” Wilson was the son of H. Lee and L. Lorene (Granger) Wilson. As a young child, Short helped his dad with the family dairy business, Wilson Dairy, delivering bottles of pure fresh Jersey milk with his siblings. He was a 1941 graduate of Colo High School, where football was his passion and he played in an undefeated season in 1938. He was later awarded ‘All Conference Quarterback’ by the Central Hawkeye Conference in 1940.
In 1945, Short joined the United States Navy. He was advanced to Aerographer, Third Class, while serving aboard the destroyer USS Henderson, which participated in Operation High Jump, a four-month naval expedition to the South Pole under the command and advisement of Rear Admiral R.E. Byrd. A highlight of his return trip to Norfolk, VA, was a pass through the Panama Canal aboard the USS Currituck in April, 1947.
On September 30, 1951, Short was united in marriage to Phyllis Jay in Nevada, Iowa. The family settled on a farm southeast of Colo, where he resided for 57 years. Short farmed, raising both grain and livestock, for over 50 years. In 2011, he made his home at Indian Creek Independent Living in Nevada, where he resided until his death.
Short served on the Board of Directors for the Colo Community School District from 1964-79, and was a former member of the Isabelle Chapter of Colo #271 O.E.S. He was a member of Nevada Masonic Lodge #99, served as scoutmaster for Colo Cub Scout Troop #228, and was a member and served on the board of the Story County Beef Producers. He also belonged to the Colo United Methodist Church and the Colo American Legion.
Short loved the Iowa Hawkeyes, attending football games in Iowa City for many years, including the Peach Bowl in 1982. He enjoyed fishing and boating with family and friends, and taking family vacations at Angler’s Beach Resort in Cass Lake, MN since the early 1960’s. Other interests included playing bridge, square dancing in earlier years, reading, gardening, and spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, rarely missing their church, school, or sporting activities.
Survivors include four children, Robert (Sharon) Wilson, Keith (Kim) Wilson, and Merle (Pam) Wilson, all of Colo, and Ginny (Greg) Peters of Port Byron, IL; 15 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; two sisters, Margaret White of Colo, and Mary (Glen) Presnall of Nevada; a brother, Donald (Ruth) Wilson of Colo; and a sister-in-law, Ardis Wilson of Colo.
He was preceded in death by his wife Phyllis on January 27, 2006; his parents; a brother, Raymond Wilson; and a brother-in-law, Carroll White.
Ryan Funeral Home of Nevada has been entrusted with the care of Short and his family. A memorial fund has been established in his name.
Tuesday, September 2, 2014
United Methodist Church
Pastor Lewis S. Flanigan
Monday, September 1, 2014
Ryan Funeral Home
Stacie Hostetler, Organist