Gerald Ray Cochran was born May 7, 1948 in El Dorado Springs, Missouri to Blond and Iva (Street) Cochran. He passed away on Saturday, December 12, 2020 in Springfield, Missouri at Cox South at the age of 72.
He graduated from High School in 1967. Then in 1968 he was drafted in the Army where he served in the 82nd Airborne Infantry Division. He fought in the Vietnam War during 1968 and 1969 serving as Pointman much of the time. After getting back home he remained on active duty until December 1973 with an Honorable Discharge.
Gerald was united in marriage to Rita Harleman in 1971. They had 3 sons together during that time. Benny Lee born December 1971; Marcus Ray born May 1974 and James Daniel born September 1978.
He worked as a Shop Foreman for Johnson’s Trucking in Nevada, Mo for 10 years. In 1985 he opened his own Diesel shop, Cochran Automotive working on over the road trucks. He then went to work for Hilltop Salvage in Lamar, Mo. for 18 years. He then retired in 2009 to work on the family farm. Gerald loved spending all day dozing, picking up rocks & tending to the cattle among many other things. He loved his Bassett Hounds Winston & Walter. If they weren’t riding with him to feed the cows they were following not too far behind him. He spoiled them with cookies and milk bones. For the last 6 years Gerald began Garden Tractor pulling with his 3 boys. They would spend countless hours in the shop planning and tuning them to have the best tractors out there. Which showed by all the 1st place trophies they came home with.
Gerald was a member of the Circle Lodge 342 AF & AM, The VFW Post 257 and The American Legion Post 1000
Gerald was preceded in death by his parents Blond & Iva Cochran and his brother Gary.
He is survived by his girlfriend of 20 years Jeanie Parks; children, Ben & Lisa Cochran, Marcus Cochran and Tonya Barrett and James Cochran and his grandchildren, Kayla, Jacob, Austin, Addyson, Kamera, Draven, Taylor, Mason and Emily.