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Alva Jesse Parker

A.J. Parker

Alva Jesse Parker was born at home June 9, 1929, to Milo Alva Parker and Florence Irene Dooley on the family farm north of Diagonal on P27 and died peacefully at Clearview Home in the morning at 11:15 the 19th of March 2024.
A.J., the 1st of 3 boys, walked to attend country school through the 8th grade. He graduated from Diagonal High School with the class of 1948. A.J. taught at one of Diagonal’s country schools after graduation from high school. He also attended I.S.U. Teachers College and graduated in 1966. In 1967, A.J. went on to attend Nursing School in Kansas City, Missouri and graduated in 1968.
A.J. farmed for a few years and operated the early Creston grain storage facility on the east side of Creston, Iowa for a number of years. A.J. married Edna Marie Kilgore of Diagonal, Iowa and together they had 5 children: Jeanette Ann, Gary Lee, Teresa Kay, Randy Allen, Teena Dee, and Alva Robert, who died in infancy.
A.J. was drafted into the U.S. Army on August 15, 1951, during the Korean War. He served as a supply sergeant nurse and received Korean Service Metal with 4, Bronze Service Stars, United Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal. A.J. continued in the Army Reserve in the states. He also served as teacher 0 30 110. He was honorably discharged on August 4, 1953.
After his discharge from service in South Carolina, A.J. bought a Piper Cub airplane and flew from South Carolina to Diagonal, Iowa with approximately 1/2 hour of flying under his belt. A.J. did a lot of flying, both solo and taking the family too.
He flew new dealership planes to dealers in southeastern states, New Orleans, Kentucky, and Florida to name a few, logging over 7000 VFR and IFR combined.
Many adventures took place in his flying expeditions running out or low on gas, clubbing tires with trees, road landings, field takeoffs and landings and brakes on all types of equipment and vehicles were always an issue.
Trying many things in life, his adventurous type went into nursing home ownership operating and expanded to 5 homes in Kansas City, Missouri, Plattsburg, Missouri, Higginsville, Missouri, Independence, Missouri and Ketsville, Missouri.
A.J. was always into something, traveling on business, even into foreign countries, Africa on business ventures and tire recycling and railroad recycling and plastics. A.J., in his late 60’s, started the landfill & commercial trash operation on the family farm with his brother Lawrence.
A.J. was preceded in death by his parents; wives Hazel Thompson of Independence, Missouri and Edna Parker of Diagonal, Iowa; infant son Alva Robert Parker; daughter Teena D. Parrott; 2 brothers Lawrence Parker and Charles R. Parker.
A.J. is survived by his wife Sonia Bianca Caballero; children Jeanette Pettit of Diagonal, Iowa, Gary Parker of Santa Rosa, California, Teresa (CA) Good of Diagonal, Iowa, Randy Parker of Windsor, California; 9 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren.
Family & friends will gather at the United Church of Diagonal on Saturday, April 27 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. and then travel in a procession to the Rising Sun Cemetery, northeast of Diagonal, where there will be a graveside service. At the gravesite, there will be military honors by Morris-Herrold Post 395, American Legion and the U.S. Army Honor Guard Unit. A luncheon will follow at the United Church of Diagonal. Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr is in charge of the services for A.J. Parker.

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