I want to tell you a bit about my life. I was born on September 16, 1934, in Frozen Camp, W.Va. as the only child of Chester Donley and Juanita Parsons Rader. I graduated from Ripley High School in 1952 and headed to Columbus, Ohio, to find my future. I attended OSU, Cornell University and numerous other colleges for advanced training classes in my career field. I found my calling with the federal government as a commissary officer, managing their military grocery stores. I began this career at Lockbourne AFB in Columbus and retired from MacDill AFB in Tampa, Fla. in 1993. The MacDill store was recognized as the best of the best stores world wide.
I had many great mentors along the way and, in turn, tried to pass my knowledge to those I mentored. Marty is receiving many letters and emails from those folks, and I appreciate it. I must say while I worked hard, I always played hard! I always bought the newest car to hit the market, loved boating, motor home trips, traveling and skin diving (I was a deputy for Franklin County, Ohio for many years because of this talent). I loved my God and tried to follow his commandments. For my sins along the way I know I am forgiven as I was saved by Jesus.
I married Marty Monroe on April 8, 1967, in Reynoldsburg, Ohio. In late 1988, I fell in love with a house in Clifton, W.Va. and convinced Marty it had to be ours. (Now, that was a feat because she wasn’t sure about leaving her Florida home). I lovingly restored the Powell Redmond House after my retirement, and it has been open to one and all. I also believe we are charged with helping where we can, and I did all I could to help those in our community in their time of need.
It is now time for me to go, and I look forward to meeting my Savior. I am leaving behind my wife, Marty, daughter, Vicki Fowler (Sandy Seth), as well as Crys (Matt) Shell, Braden, my mother and father-in-law Agnes and David Monroe, sisters-in-law Bev (Ken) Ocker, Pat (Russ) Logan, and brother-in-law David (Dorsay) Monroe, an aunt, Mary Knapp, uncle Russ Hodgson, and best friends Tim and Brenda Smith and their girls. I am proud of all my nieces and nephews and their families. Thanks, Lee, for making the long trip to see me these last days — it meant so much as you know. Also, I leave many cousins. And last but certainly not least, my beautiful Shih Tzu pups: Missy, Lexi, Baylee and Lola. Lexi never left my side these last three years and was with me my last day at OSU.
I want to challenge all my friends and family to do this in memory of me — remember to worship our Lord, love your family and friends passionately as I have done. And do one thing each by helping someone less fortunate than yourself. And as I ALWAYS say when telling folks goodbye, “enjoy your party!”