Pastor Jim Franklin of the Flora, Indiana, Grace Brethren Church, has sent notice of the death of Harold “Pappy” Stayer, a member of the Flora church for more than 40 years and a significant figure in the founding and development of the Grace Brethren Boys ministry.
J. Harold “Pappy” Stayer, 87, of Flora, died at 10:55 a.m. Friday, June 23, 2006, at the Chase Center in Logansport, Indiana.
Born Aug. 29, 1918, to the late Charles Urbanna and Mary M. Brumbaugh Stayer in Curryville, Pa., he graduated from Martinsburg High School in Martinsburg, Pa.
His marriage was to Mary Elizabeth Humberd on April 9, 1939, and she preceded him in death on May 13, 2000.
He was a veteran, serving in the Army in the Pacific Theater.
Mr. Stayer worked for Zenith Radio Corp. in Chicago where he developed guidance systems for U.S. military machinery and later worked on developing tuners for the first color television sets. In 1952, he moved his family to Flora, where he owned and operated Hal’s Television Service. He also worked for the Cutler Telephone Co. before retiring from Alltel in 1981.
He started working with the Boy Scouts of America in 1957 and was troop leader for Troop 160 from 1957 to 1972, Troop 140 from 1972 to 1982 and Troop 144 from 1982 to 1989. He was an assistant troop leader from 1989 until the time of his death.
He worked at the Boy Scout summer camp for more than 25 years and received several honors and awards from the Boy Scouts including the Brotherhood Award in 1968, the Ordeal Award in 1967, the Vigil Award in 1971 and the Woodbadge Course in 1974. He also received the Order of the Arrow Award and the Silver Beaver award.
Mr. Stayer hiked the Appalachian Trail twice, went to Philmont Scout Ranch two times and climbed Mount Baldi three times.
In 1974, he and 10 other men from Grace Brethren Church started Grace Brethren Boys, a boys youth group. In 2003, he received The Award for Selfless Service to his Nation as a Christian Father from the organization.
He enjoyed assisting with Mother’s Day Out, hunting, fishing, hiking, trapping, camping and outdoor activities.
Surviving are two daughters, Patricia Azbell (husband: Charles) of Rochester and Joyce Taylor of Warsaw; and a sister, Rhoda Blank of Corning, N.Y.
Visitation will be 4-8 p.m. Monday at Reinke Funeral Home in Flora and one hour prior to 10 a.m. services Tuesday at Bringhurst United Methodist Church, Pastor Larry DeVos officiating. Interment Maple Lawn Cemetery in Flora.
Stayer was lovingly known as “Uncle Harold” to every child. Also surviving are eight grandchildren, a special niece, Mary Simpson(husband: Ray) and their children, Matt and Monica, all of Bringhurst; 10 great-grandchildren, 3 stepgreat-grandchildren, 3 sisters-in-law and numerous nieces and nephews. Preceding him in death are 3 brothers.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Boy Scouts of America Troop 144, Flora or the Grace Brethren Boys.