Richard Van Duson

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

SIKESTON, Mo. -- Richard Van Duson, 79, of Sikeston died Thursday, Oct. 17, 2002, at Missouri Delta Medical Center.

He was born Feb. 15, 1923, in Cleveland, Ohio, son of Richard and Lucille Malesky Van Duson. He and Emma Jean Branum were married Feb. 5, 1976.

Van Duson lived in Marietta, Ohio, most of his life. He attended Marietta College and was a member of St. Luke's Lutheran Church.

He served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II and was involved in the battle of Iwo Jima and was a member of the Marine Corps Band. He was discharged in 1947 with the rank of staff sergeant.

Van Duson then worked at Marietta Ignition Inc. and Vadakin Inc. in Marietta. He moved to Sikeston in 1975 and was employed at Noranda Aluminum in New Madrid, Mo., until retiring in November 1978.

A musician, he played trumpet, saxophone and drums, traveling with the Ronnie Singer Orchestra and Bill Peterson Orchestra several years.

He was a licensed private aircraft pilot, member of Sikeston VFW Post 3174, American Legion Post 114 and Fraternal Order of Eagles 3319.

Survivors include his wife; two sons, Bill Branum of Charleston, Mo., Greg Branum of Columbia, Mo., formerly of Cape Girardeau; two daughters, Julie Norman of Searcy, Ark., Mona Porter of Sikeston; and six grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by a brother.

Friends may call at McMikle Funeral Home in Charleston after noon Thursday.

The funeral will be at 2 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. The Rev. Gerald Collier will officiate. Burial will be in Garden of Memories Cemetery at Sikeston, with full military graveside rites by the U.S. Marine Corps.