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Harold Lawrence Hickey, age 86, went to heaven to meet his HEAVENLY FATHER on Father's Day, June 16, 2013. He was a native of his beloved Hennessey, Oklahoma where he grew up on a wheat farm; he spent most of his adult life in Winnfield, Louisiana.
He served his country from 1945-1946 in the United States Army in Fort Benning, Georgia where he was a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne. He also played football while in the service, and this was a topic of many stories and a source of pride.
He was a proud graduate of Oklahoma State University, with a Bachelors of Science degree in Commerce. He continued to follow the Cowboys throughout his life. Watching football with his family was a favorite activity, and often the subject of lengthy telephone conversations. While in college, Harold spent his summers following the wheat harvest on a combine from Oklahoma to Montana.
He moved to Winnfield, Louisiana in 1951 where he met Gloria Dale Rice, and they were happily married for 60 years. Harold worked as a salesman, primarily in the toy business, for more than 20 years prior to entering the nursing home business where he served at Wyatt Manor Nursing Home in Wyatt, Louisiana as the administrator. He refused to retire, and spent his latter years in two of his preferred occupations as a substitute teacher and a funeral home greeter. These endeavors allowed him to form a relationship with people, both young and old, which delighted him.
His son, Harold L. Hickey, Jr. was his only child and the delight of his existence. He would tell any stranger that he met about Hal's accomplishments. He kept newspaper clippings from both the Winn Parish Enterprise and The Dallas Morning News in his wallet at all times so he could pull them out at a moment's notice, ready to share them with anyone who would listen. Being a good parent and grandparent was his most important job and perhaps his favorite of all. Setting a Christian example, being a moral compass and a loving guide was paramount to Harold.
Harold served as a second dad to a host of nieces and nephews who lovingly referred to him as simply "Uncle". He threw pitches, footballs and Frisbees; assembled bicycles and fixed flat tires. These family members counted on Uncle on many occasions, and he would never disappoint.
He was an active member of The First Baptist Church of Winnfield and the Kingdom Builders Sunday School Class, and he supported the FBC senior adult ministry. He was also a past member and president of the Lions Club and a charter member of The Pine Ridge Country Club.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Elizabeth and Joseph Hickey, brothers Richard and Joe and sister Pat. He is survived by wife, Gloria Rice Hickey, son Hal Hickey and wife Jill, grandson Kyle Hickey and wife Ashley, and grandson Keith Hickey and fiancé Lisa Henderson. He is also survived by his loving great granddaughter Molly R. Hickey.
Memorial donations can be made in his honor to either the First Baptist Church of Winnfield or the Louisiana Baptist Children's Home at 7200 Desiard Street, Monroe, LA.
Visitation will be at Southern Funeral Home from 5:00-8:00 pm on Monday, June 17. The funeral service will be at The First Baptist Church of Winnfield on Tuesday, June 17 at 10:00 am, with internment following at Sardis Cemetery, Winn Parish.
Published in The Town Talk from June 17 to June 18, 2013