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CHAFFEE, Mo. -- William "Bill" Cannon, 72, of Chaffee died peacefully at his home Thursday, July 1, 2010.
He was born Oct. 9, 1937, in Chaffee, son of Elmer A. and Ethel L. Jeffries Cannon. He and Carolyn Ryan were married Nov. 7, 1959. He later married Donna Ivester Jan. 26, 1981. She died Jan. 5, 2007.
Cannon started his career as an engineer with Frisco Railroad Nov. 1, 1961, and later with Burlington Northern Railway, retiring in 1988. He also owned and operated laundromats in Chaffee and Cape Girardeau. In recent years, he built and operated Cannon Train Park just East of Chaffee at the family farm.
He was a member of First Baptist Church of Chaffee. He was a 1955 graduate of Chaffee High School where he played basketball, football and was a member of the Red Devils Marching Band.
Following graduation from high school, Bill proudly served his country as a photographer in the U.S. Army.
He was a lifetime member of the Elks. He was a member of various organizations including Chaffee VFW, Jaycees, Chaffee Athletic Booster Club, vice president and founding member of Chaffee Historical Society, Eagles Aerie 3775 of Cape Girardeau, among others.
He served as a member of the Chaffee Public School Board, a city council member, and mayor of Chaffee 12 years.
Survivors include two daughters, Karen Brown of Springfield, Mo., Kathi (Tim) Stone of Cape Girardeau; two sons, Chris (Pam) Cannon of Cape Girardeau, Wade (Jaimie) Cannon of Chaffee; a stepson, David Ivester II of Chaffee; two brothers, Royce (Sandy) Cannon of San Antonio, Texas, Tim (Brenda) Cannon of Barnhart, Mo.; seven grandchildren, Kori (Travis) Skidmore of Springfield, Kari Stone, Caitlin Cannon, Alex Stone, Madison Cannon and Mackenzie Cannon of Cape Girardeau, Jaxon Cannon of Chaffee; a great-grandson, Gage Skidmore of Springfield; two step-grandsons, David Ivester III of Chaffee, Ethan Ivester of Jackson; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife, and an infant brother.
Bill's many passions included trains, watching football and Cardinals baseball games on television, traveling, antique shopping at flea markets, caring for his miniature donkeys, and spending time at his farm that he loved so much.
Bill was a special person who cared deeply for his family. Despite the many challenges of his recent illness, Bill's positive attitude and sense of humor never wavered. Throughout his illness he set an example for all of us who loved him by living his life with courage and strength. He inspired us all.
Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Amick-Burnett Funeral Chapel in Chaffee.
The funeral will be at 10 a.m. Thursday at the chapel, with Kenn Riehn officiating. Burial will be in Union Park Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to Chaffee Historical Society.