Merle Lee Newman, 78, St. Clair, formerly of Labadie, departed this life in Washington Monday, April 15, 2013.
Merle was born in St. Louis Dec. 12, 1934, the son of Ralph Merle Newman and wife Delma Eunice, nee Shelton.
On June 8, 1956, he was united in marriage to Rosemarie Fuson and four children came to bless this union.
Merle is survived by one son, Jim Newman and wife Jean-Marie, St. Louis; three daughters, Rosalee Newman, Mariann Newman, both of Sterling, Va., and Linda Canziani and husband Steve, St. Clair; two brothers, Marvin Newman and wife Judy, Washington, and Jerry Newman and wife Kristi, Fulton; one sister, Margo Eckelkamp and husband Dennis, Union; 15 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; brothers- and sisters-in-law; nieces; nephews; great- and great-great-nieces and -nephews; cousins; other relatives and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Rosemarie Newman; and parents, Ralph and Delma Newman.
Merle was a Christian of the Baptist faith and was currently a member of St. Clair Southern Baptist Church, St. Clair. He also was a charter member of Gideons International, Union, chapter and participated in missionary trips to Africa, Brazil and Mexico. Merle was the owner and manager of Newman's Auto Salvage, as well as Newman's Tractor & Garden, both located in Labadie. He was a past board member of Four Rivers Vocational School, Washington, past president of the St. Louis Salvage Association and a present member of AOPA (Aircraft Owners Pilots Association). Merle's interests included working on cars, fishing, traveling and piloting his Cessna aircraft. He had a giving spirit, donating to different schools on many occasions. What meant most to Merle was the time spent with his family and the love they shared. The precious memories they created will be cherished by them all forever.
Funeral services were held at 10 a.m. Thursday, April 18, at Russell Colonial Funeral Home, St. Clair, with the Rev. Bill Savage officiating.
Interment was in Brush Creek Cemetery, Gray Summit.
Memorials may be made to Gideons International.
The family was served by Russell Colonial Funeral Home, St. Clair.