Willard W. Hughes, 87, of Oakley, KS, passed away Sunday, December 22, 2013. He was born Sept. 2, 1926 to Harry and Hazel (Barritt) Hughes on their family farm in Gove County. He graduated from Grinnell High School in 1944 and went on to serve in the United States Navy through 1946. Willard met his wife, Rose Lager, through friends and they were married on April 9, 1951 in Oakley, KS where they raised five children during their 62-year marriage. Willard was a hardworking and skilled craftsman. In 1948, he began working with his father and later took over the family business - Hughes Plumbing Company - which he owned until his retirement in 1996. Willard earned his master plumbers license and was a member of the Kansas State Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Contractors. He also served his community through the Oakley Lions Club and as a former president and member of the Oakley City Council. After retirement Willard played a lot of cards and enjoyed spending time with family and friends. He also had a creative streak which became a passion for woodworking later in life, always creating amazing pieces for his home and as gifts -- his friends and family loved receiving his creations and will treasure them as part of their memories.
He is preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Robert and a sister, Marjorie Hoth.
He is survived by his wife, Rose, of Oakley; three sons, Walter (Leann) Hughes, of Oakley, Keith (Renae) Hughes, of Hutchinson and Roger (Leigh) Hughes, of Yellville, AR; two daughters, Nancy (Darrell) Dietz, of Colorado Springs, CO and Sharon (Jerry Conroy) Hughes, of Minneapolis, MN; six grandchildren, Craig Dietz, Sean Hughes, Logan Hughes, Nolan Hughes, Cori Dietz-Hughes and Sage Hughes; two great-grandchildren, Cole Hughes and Brooklynn Hughes.
Cremation was chosen and family will receive friends from 6-8:00pm on Thursday, Dec 26, 2013 at Baalmann Mortuary, Oakley. Vigil service will be at 7:00pm. Memorial Mass will be 10:00 am on Friday, Dec 27, 2013 at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Oakley. Memorials are suggested to St. Joseph Catholic School in care of Baalmann Mortuary, PO Box 204 Oakley, KS 67748. Online Condolences: www.baalmannmortuary.com