Fred Surman Jr.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Fred Surman Jr.

CHAFFEE, Mo. -- Fred M. Surman Jr., 87, of Chaffee passed away at the family home Sunday, May 27, 2012.

Surman was born in Memphis, Tenn., on Jan. 5, 1925, to the late Frederick and Bernice Muns Surman Sr. He married Wanda Potts on Dec. 27, 1947, at Marion, Ark., and she preceded him in death Feb. 7, 2007.

Fred was a member of the U.S. Air Force and served in World War II. He retired as a lieutenant colonel after being commissioned 28 years. He served 13 months in the China-Burma-India theater, where he flew the "Hump." He is the holder of the Air Medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross. Fred was a fireman for the Frisco Railroad, later known as the Burlington Northern Railroad, from 1949 to 1961. He became an engineer from 1961 to 1985, when he retired from the railroad.

He was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Chaffee, the Chaffee Elks Lodge 1810 and the Chaffee VFW Post 3127. He also served as a board commissioner from 1987 to 1994 and was treasurer of the Southeast Missouri Regional Port Authority from 1991 to 1994. He started a Men's Meeting at the Chaffee Nursing Center.

Survivors include three daughters, Debby (Dub) Cook of Chaffee, Diane (Bill) Borneman of Gleason, Tenn., and Darla Turner of Chaffee; six grandchildren, Denae (Scott) Ringwald of Cape Girardeau, Kim (Zac) Montgomery of Gleason, Lachelle Cook of Chaffee, Laura (Tim) Rushing of Chaffee, Billy (Kim) Borneman of Gleason, Bradley (Jennifer) Borneman of Greenfield, Tenn.; and 12 great-grandchildren.

Surman was preceded in death by two brothers, Harry and Buck Surman.

Friends may call after 4 p.m. Wednesday at Amick-Burnett Funeral Chapel in Chaffee. The Chaffee VFW post will have a service at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

Funeral service will be at 1 p.m. Thursday at the chapel, with the Rev. Marty Blakey officiating.

Burial will be at Union Park Cemetery in Chaffee with full military honors by the U.S. Air Force.