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Teddy ("Ted") Eugene Carter, 82 of Willard passed away on January 30, 2013 at the Springfield Rehabilitation Center.
He was born on August 11, 1930 in a farmhouse in Goodson, Mo. While a young boy, his family moved from the town of Polk to Morrisville, Mo. His parents farmed and his father was also a blacksmith and operated an auto repair shop. Ted worked along side his father as he was growing up. In later years he told many boyhood stories of fishing in the Slagle Creek and of generally getting into mischief with his life-long friend, Jack Dixon. Working in his fathers shop helped Ted to develop his natural mechanical talents.
He then moved to Springfield, Mo., and attended a year at the Southwest Missouri State College (now Missouri State University). At the Taylor's Restaurant he met Diana Redden, a beautiful young woman who was to become his devoted wife of 60 years. They married in the Christian Church in Butler, Missouri on November 8, 1952. They moved to St. Louis where Ted worked at the Chevrolet assembly plant, and then Western Auto. He and Diana returned to Springfield where they started a small business, repairing radios and televisions. This would grow into Ted's TV Centers, a Springfield institution for over 40 years. Ted became readily recognized in the Springfield community due to his appearances in their numerous television commercials over the years. He and Diana worked side by side in their business while raising 3 sons, Gary, Jerry and Larry. Ted was a firm believer in honesty, always keeping your word, hard work, self-reliance and always doing a good job, and he worked tirelessly to instill these values into their sons. These values earned their business a reputation for excellence and reliability and they had many loyal customers.
The family was stricken with grief when the oldest son, Gary died in February 1981 in a car accident.
In 1972 Ted and Diana purchased a 50 acre camp in Willard. Ted and Diana spent countless hours clearing brush, rebuilding the lodge, adding outbuildings and transforming and maintaining the property. They kept a vegetable garden and fished in their lake. Diana has a "green thumb" and she planted and maintained countless flowers. Ted loved to tinker in his shop, repairing vehicles and any manner of mechanical equipment and building and creating objects, tools and gadgets. In 2000, they closed their business and retired to their camp. Ted and Diana continued to cut and haul firewood for their wood-burning stove until just a few months prior to his death. Ted was blessed to have been able to live as he chose with his wife and with the support of his sons and devoted and loving daughters-in-law, Pam and Deirdre until the end. He enjoyed a full and remarkable life.
Ted is survived by his wife Diana Carter of Willard, his son and daughter-in-law Jerry and Deirdre (Dee) of Fair Grove and son and daughter-in-law Larry and Pam of Springfield, granddaughters Sara Carter and Mary Carter, nieces Rochelle Gerule and Ingrid Dearman, step-grandson Tyler Farry, step-granddaughter Kayla Farry, and step-grandson Tyler Platz.
Ted was predeceased by his son, Gary in February, 1981, his brother Curtis Carter, and sisters Pearle Memler and Jeanne Brashears.
The funeral will be held at the Klingner-Cope funeral home at White Chapel on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 2:00 PM, with visitation at 1:00 PM. Call 417-866-5012 for more information. He will be interned at the White Chapel Cemetery.
Family requests in lieu of flowers make donations to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517 Topeka, Kansas 66675
Published in the News-Leader from Feb. 2 to Feb. 4, 2013