Ira L. "Sonny" Harman, 87, longtime resident of Sheldon, Mo., died Thursday, Dec. 16, 2010, at St. John's Regional Medical Center in Joplin, Mo. He was born Jan. 21, 1923, in Springfield, Mo., the son of Ira Lilburn Harman and Mary Lee Jones Harman.
Better known to most family and friends as "Sonny," he grew up in and around the Milford and Doylesport communities of Barton County. He entered the U.S. Army on Jan. 14, 1943, serving three years in England, France and Belgium with the 8th Army Air Force. When the war with Germany ended, he was shipped to the Pacific Theater of War. When he arrived in the Philippines, Japan surrendered.
After being discharged and returning to Missouri, he met Helen Marie Riddle and they were married on Aug. 3, 1946, in Columbus, Kan. Sonny worked at several different professions before finding his true calling as a carpenter. Several of the houses in Sheldon and the surrounding area were built by him and countless others were remodeled in some form or fashion.
He was a member of the American Legion, a past member of the Sheldon Lions Club and attended Sheldon Christian Church.
Sonny is survived by one daughter, Connie L. Channel and husband, Dennis, whom recently returned to Sheldon to help with her father's care; two sons, James M. Harman, Costa Rica and Thomas L. Harman and his wife, Mary Ann, Midland, Texas; one sister, Mary Ella Phipps, Lamar, Mo.; six grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Helen, on Sept. 2, 2004 and three sisters, Irene Iannone, Helen Jantz and Mae Coleman.
A special thank you to a special niece, Linda K. Elderton, Sheldon, Mo., for her many acts of kindness.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m., Monday, Dec. 20, at the Sheldon Christian Church, Sheldon, with the Rev. Andrew Kirschner officiating. Interment will follow in Sheldon Cemetery, Sheldon. Friends may call now and until the hour of service and the family receives friends from 7-8 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 19, at Ferry Funeral Home, Nevada.
Memorials may be given to the American Heart Association c/o Ferry Funeral Home, 301 S. Washington, Nevada, MO 64772.