SIKESTON -- Oliver Wendell Farley, 81, died at 7:10 a.m. March 31, 2012, at Missouri Delta Medical Center in Sikeston.
Born March 1, 1931, in Charleston, to the late Oliver and Edith Cruson Farley, he was a self-employed sign painter and electrical technician and had owned and operated Farley Sign Shop. A veteran of the U.S. Army Reserve and Missouri National Guard, he retired as a master sergeant after 42 years of service. He had been an ordained minister for over 20 years and for the past 10 years had pastored Trinity Free Pentecost Church in Charleston. He and his wife had also served as missionaries for the Navajo Indians and in the Appalachian Mountains since 1989.
He was an avid radio operator and member of Trico Amateur Club (call letters KOMO) for over 45 years. He was a God-gifted musician playing several instruments, primarily the steel and lead guitar. He had played with several groups including Harold and the Boys, Gospel Jubileers and for the past 22 years had played at the Bootheel Jamboree in Bernie.
On Oct. 20, 1956, in Corinth, Miss., he married Bertha Joanna Skaggs Montgomery, and she survives of the home.
Other survivors include: one son, Bryan Montgomery of Sikeston; one daughter and son-in-law, Susie and Bill Presswood of Tyler, Texas; one sister, June House of Poplar Bluff; five grandchildren, B.J. Montgomery, Abby Seiler, Wendy Montgomery, Jayme Milam and Chelsea Milam; and five great-grandchildren, Audrey, Seth, Abbey, Brianna and Wyatt.
He was preceded in death by four brothers, G.R. Farley, Rodney Farley, Leonard Farley and Paul Farley; and one sister, Irlene Groves.
Visitation is from 5-8 p.m. today at the Blanchard Funeral Chapel in Sikeston. A musical celebration of his life service will be conducted at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the funeral home. The Rev. John Givens, pastor of the Potters House Church, will officiate.
Burial with full military honors will follow at 1 p.m. in the Missouri State Veterans Cemetery in Bloomfield.
Pallbearers will be: Bryan E. Montgomery, Bryan J. Montgomery, Joey Seiler, Jayme Milam, Bill Presswood and Darrin House.
Honorary pallbearers are: Dr. Stanley Sides and the Trico Ham Radio Club members.
Online condolences may be sent at blanchardfuneral.com.