Gene Earl Crawford passed away at his home in Osceola, Mo on April 21, 2021. He was 85 years old. He was born in Dunlap, Iowa on January 24, 1936, the 4th child of Kenneth and Opal (Arthur) Crawford. He spoke of his parents struggles in the post-depression era, stating there was always an abundance of love and strong family values. He carried the love and strong family values throughout his life.
Gene joined the United States Marine Corps in 1959, he was in Platoon 188. He was stationed in Japan. During his service, he was an MP and a vehicle operator. He eventually became the designated driver for the Chief of Staff. He achieved the level of pistol marksmanship a skill that was evident until his passing. On August 14, 1957, he was transferred to the Marine Corp Reserve and was honorably discharged in August 1962.
On July 4th, 1958 he married Graycemae Foreman. Graycemae had a son, Robert Palmer that Gene raised as his own. On September 27, 1959, Gene welcomed his only child, son David Gene Crawford. They settled in Independence, MO.
Gene worked as a heavy equipment operator, but the majority of his career he was an automotive repair technician. He received the Ford Motor Company Master Technician Certification. He worked at Schneider Ford (changed to Thoroughbred Ford) in Kansas City, MO for over 30 years. He retired from Thoroughbred Ford in 1998.
After retirement, Gene returned to Osceola, MO a town that his parents moved to when he was a young child. He loved being in the country and back to his family roots. His sister, Lillian and her family lived close by. Over the years he kept busy tending to his land, raising cows, growing his gardens and “tinkering” with all his equipment. He loved tractors and was always on the lookout to add to his collection. Most of all he loved fishing. He anxiously awaited winter to be over so he could drop the first line into the water. He would invite his family and friends on fishing trips and afterwards, if they were lucky, they were privileged to his famous fish fries. He was quite the expert on fishing and obtained a couple of lunker awards. To add to his skills, he became certified in SCUBA diving so he could spearfish. His first outing spearfishing was quite the adventure and everyone reaped the awards.
Loved ones with whom Gene will be united with are his parents Kenneth and Opal Crawford, brothers Carroll Crawford and Donald Crawford, sister Patty Booher and step son Robert Palmer.
Gene is survived by his son David (Leslie) Crawford, grandson Christopher Crawford, granddaughter Erica (Walt) Pyle, great granddaughter, Niley Pyle, sisters Lillian Koger and Janet Geisinger and many nephews and nieces.
Gene knew no strangers. He was always one to tell a good story from his life adventures. He was insightful of events both past and present. He had a great wit and sense of humor. One may say he was quite stubborn and opinionated, but that was what made him so special to all that loved him. It was Gene’s way or the highway, but overtime he would give in (sometimes). For those who knew him best, he had a huge heart and genuine kindness, he was always ready to lend a hand to help no matter if you were family, friend or stranger. We know he is amongst angels, sitting in a boat waiting to catch that trophy fish. We miss and love you dearly.