Merle's Story

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On February 6, 2018, Merle Jean Beddow, another of the greatest generation, passed away at his home in Port Richey, Fla., with his daughter and son by his side.
Merle was born August 14, 1926, to Joseph and Vera (Jones) Beddow in Hillery, Ill. He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Carl Elbert and Darrell Dean; sister Alta Flora (Beddow) Arthur; daughter Nancy Jean Padavich; and great-granddaughter, Kathleen Marie Beddow.
He was united in marriage to Garnet June Wienke on May 7, 1950, and enjoyed 53 happy years together. They had three children, Paula Kay (Robert) Meece, Danville, Nancy Jean (Richard) Padavich (deceased), Iowa, and Thomas Joseph Beddow of Florida.
He will be deeply missed by his children and grandchildren, Jason Allen (Katie) Padavich, Iowa, and Scott Joseph (Sarah) Meece, Danville; great-grandchildren Cole and Kayla Padavich, Iowa, Vivian Kay Meece, Danville, and Jaiden and Khloee Beddow, Maine; and many nieces, nephews and cousins
Merle was a graduate of Danville High School. He joined the U.S. Navy September 11, 1942, and served as an EM2 aboard the USS Riddle, USS Pugent Sound, USS Antietam, USS Badoeng Strait, USS Midway and the USS Coral Sea. He served two tours, being honorably discharged on October 1952. He earned the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, Philippine Independence Medal, American Area Campaign Medal, Philippine Liberation Medal, World War II Victory Medal and Good Conduct Medal.
While in the Navy, he trained as an electrician from which he made his living working for Leverenz Electric, Anderson Electric, Fedco Electric, Fischbach and Moore of Chicago and Deevers Electric, Davenport, Iowa, before retiring to Holiday, Fla., in July 1986. He was a 66-year member of the IBEW 538.
He was an active member of the VFW, American Legion, Loyal Order of the Moose and Elks 332. He was a 32nd Degree Mason with the Anchor Lodge 980, where he also was a Worshipful Master. His favorite pastime was playing golf with his buddies from Illinois, Iowa and Florida.
Per his request, he was cremated with internment to be at the National Cemetery in Danville at 2 p.m. February 23. Full military rites will be received. A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, February 24, at Union Corner United Methodist Church, 14158 Perrysville Road, Danville. Pastor Patti Wise will officiate at both services. Masonic rites will be performed Saturday.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Masonic Hall Dyslexia program at 109 W. North Street, Danville , IL 61832, or to HPH Hospice, 12107 Majestic Blvd, Hudson, FL 34667.
Published on February 19, 2018
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