Anthony Dyer Hill died Friday, Nov. 15, in Lakeland, Fla., at 97. In 1916, on a mild April day in Thomson, Ga., a baby boy was born to Otis and Essie Hill. Little Tony was their firstborn son and they loved him dearly. He grew up in Thomson, graduated from high school there, and joined the Navy in 1935. One summer night in Jacksonville, a beautiful young cashier caught his eye, and two weeks later he married her. Tony and Helen Hill began a love story that would last 67 years.
During Tony's 20-year Navy career, he traveled to Europe, Africa and Asia, treating wounded sailors and Marines, as well as Japanese POWs after Doolittle's Raid of 1942. In 1945 he was with the Marine Corps on Iwo Jima, and saw the flag raising on Mount Suribachi, a memory that has become a symbol of American pride. After retiring, Tony worked in civil service and at Columbia Research. In his mid-nineties he began reading the Bible in earnest and deepened his trust in Jesus Christ. Tony was a wonderful husband and father, and will be remembered with love.
Tony's wife Helen and his older son John preceded him in death.
He is survived by John's wife Hiroko and their children: Josh; Laurel and husband Hajime and son Dan; Naomi and husband Dai and daughters Sallie and Sarah; his younger son, Robert and his wife Susan and their son Stephen and wife Natalie; and many nieces and nephews.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, Nov. 21 at Wilson Funeral Home from 6-7 p.m. Funeral services will be held on Friday Nov. 22 at 9 a.m. in the Wilson Funeral Home Chapel. Burial will be held at 1:15 p.m. on Friday at Fort Barrancas National Cemetery in Pensacola with military honors.
Wilson Funeral Home
Family Owned Since 1911
214 Airport Road
Panama City, Fla.
Published in Panama City News Herald on Nov. 17, 2013