Grady Hires, 93, of Jena, Florida went to meet his Heavenly Father on Wednesday, April 30, 2014, at North Florida Regional Hospital in Gainesville, Florida. He was born in Dixie County, Florida, on August 17, 1920, to James and Mary Croft Hires and was the last surviving child of 21 siblings.

While working at Hines Turpentine Camp, he operated the Commissary and transported Camp students to the Oliver School in town. He later worked as a butcher for Peach's Grocery Store for many years. He also served for one-term as a Dixie County School Board member before being elected as Dixie County Tax Collector, a position he held from 1960 until his retirement in 1984.

Mr. Grady is also remembered by many for the outstanding vegetables he grew on his farm in Jena, freely sharing his bounty with residents throughout the county. In his spare time, away from farming, he enjoyed pitching for numerous softball teams, for many years.

He is survived by his wife, of 41 years, Freddie Hamilton Henley Hires, of Jena, Florida; children, Don (Sandra) Hires, of Perry, Florida, Bobby Joe (Nelia) Hires, of Perry, Florida; Darlene (Bill) Geiger, of Chiefland, Florida and Rodney (Karen) Hires, of Cross City, Florida; step-children, Linda (David) Fultz, of Taylors, South Carolina, Sue (Maxie) Chewning, of Cross City, Florida, Connie H. Sheppard, of Cross City, Florida and Edd (Dana) Henley, of Jena, Florida; 30 grandchildren, 46 great-grandchildren and 2 great-great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his son, Keith Hires; his sisters, Mary Driggers, Marie Tillman, Ruby Penny, Flossie Lytte, Leonna Revels and Mayo Hires; his brothers, Arthur Hires, Clayton Hires and Joe Brown Hires; his grandsons, Arthur Hires and Chad A. Reed, Sr.; and his son-in-law, David Sheppard.

The family received friends for a viewing on Friday, May 2, 2014, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. at Rick Gooding Funeral Home in Cross City.

A celebration of his life will be held Saturday, May 3, 2014, at 2:00 p.m., in First Baptist Church of Steinhatchee, Florida. Interment will follow at Waters Memorial Cemetery, Steinhatchee, Florida.

Arrangements are under the care of Rick Gooding Funeral Home, Cross City, Florida, (352) 498-5400.

Funeral Home

Rick Gooding Funeral Home
16984 SE Highway 19 Cross City, FL 32628

Published in Gainesville Sun from May 2 to May 4, 2014