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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Benny Merguie

Friday, September 1, 2006

Benjamin A. "Benny" Merguie, 89, of Kennett, was born April 6, 1917, and passed away Tuesday, August 29, 2006, at NEA Hospital in Jonesboro, Ark.

On Nov. 25, 1937, in San Antonio, Texas, he married Dorothy Wright.

He is survived by his wife; a son, Ron Merguie and wife, Billee, of Jonesboro; a daughter, Sandra Claire Thorn, of Mountain Home, Ark.; three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

He was a graduate of San Antonio Technical and Vocational School, a member of the First Baptist Church, former Sunday school teacher, a Master Mason and on March 17, 2003 was presented the 50 year Jewel by Grand Master Jimmie D. Lee, he was also a member of Blue Lodge, a Shriner and a past member of the Kennett Lion's Club. He was a retiree of Metropolitan Insurance, where he received several awards for sales and in 1972 was recognized for placing more than $1,000,000.00 of insurance.

In Oct. 1943, he volunteered for service in the Army Air Corp. He served one and one half years in the states and one and one half years overseas. When released, he remained in the Air Force Reserves and was recalled for service for a year in the Korean Conflict.

He worked on a B47 Bomber, was a staff sergeant and flying crew chief under the command of Col., now General Paul W. Tibbets, and picked for Secret Project WIBAC.

In November of 2003, he was privileged to meet up with his old commanding officer, the now general, who was on a speaking and book tour. Benny met him at Pigeon Forge, Ark., and took his original orders for the general to look over. He gave Benny a picture of himself by his bomber "The Enola Gay" and an autographed copy of his book.

The Army Air Corp had changed to U.S. Air Force and uniforms changed from kaki to blues.

On returning home from service, Benny went to work for the city of Kennett as a building inspector and civil defense, where he helped get sirens for the city. He was an EMT and got classes started so others could learn and he started the police auxiliary and served as president for some time, and also worked at ridding the city of blackbirds. He retired from city.

Pallbearers were Jim Byrd, Mark Goddard, Glen Parker, Roger Montgomery, Scott Tutor, Mike Wagster, John David Merguie and Jeff Aulgur. Honorary pallbearers were coffee drinkers club, Alex Merguie and other friends.

In lieu of flowers you may donate to the First Baptist Church Building Fund or the charity of your choice.

Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m., Thursday, August 31, at the McDaniel Funeral Home Chapel in Kennett with the Revs. Ed Jansson and Scott Andrews officiating.

Burial was in the Memorial Gardens Cemetery at Kennett.