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William Coles Buckner Sr., 87, passed from this life Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012 at Mercy Hospital in Springfield. He was an exceptional husband, father, grandfather, uncle, friend and citizen of Springfield. He will be remembered and greatly missed by many.
Bill was born Aug. 1, 1925 in Springfield, Missouri, to James Small and Marguerite Coles Buckner. He grew up in Springfield, studied at Washington University in St. Louis and Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and graduated from Drury University. He served in World War II as a tanker radio operator. In 1950 he married his college sweetheart, Jeanne O'Connor, and together they raised three boys, William Coles, Mark Dawson and Peter Mills.
He considered his two greatest achievements in life to be caring for his family and his love for the city of Springfield. Bill loved golfing, floating, or fishing. He loved floating, fishing, and camping with his boys. Bill was a long time member of Hickory Hills Country Club. He loved to travel and wherever he was and whatever he was doing, he lived life to the fullest with humor, compassion and honor.
Bill's youngest son Peter said, "He was the perfect example of how to live a great life; a father's father, a leader's leader and a friend's friend. Also one of the best business men this town has ever had."
His love of Springfield was evident in the amount of time he invested in the city. He served on several boards and received many awards including the US Junior Chamber of Commerce and Young Man of the Year, 1957; President of Springfield Community Chest, 1961; National Stationary and Office Equipment Service Award for District 6, 1962-1963; Recognized for outstanding leadership as chairman of the Board of Public Utilities, 1972-1973; Honored for serving as a member of the Board of Public Utilities, 1974; Past president of Chamber of Commerce and owner of Springfield Office Supply Company, 1987; Recognized for service as a charter member and chairman of the Membership Committee of the Chamber, 1988.
He was proceeded in death by his parents, his wife, his sons William and Mark, his brothers James and John and sister Elizabeth. He is survived by his son Peter, grandchildren Hillary and Will Buckner, sisters-in-law Shirley O'Connor and Jo Ann Buckner, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorial Service will be Friday, December 14, 2012 at 4:30pm in Gorman-Scharpf Brentwood Chapel with a visitation beginning at 4pm. Private burial will be in Missouri Veterans Cemetery.
Gorman-Scharpf Funeral Home
1947 E. Seminole Springfield, MO 65804
Published in the News-Leader on Dec. 9, 2012