Stephen Everett Hodson, 73, died on Monday, July 2, 2012, at his home near Carl Junction, Mo., following a short illness.

Stephen Everett Hodson, 73, died on Monday, July 2, 2012, at his home near Carl Junction, Mo., following a short illness.

Steve was born on July 18, 1938, on the family farm north of Alba, Mo., the first child of Harvey and Lida Hodson.  He graduated from Alba High School in 1956 and Joplin Junior College in 1960.

Steve served his country in the United States Army from 1961 to 1963, stationed in Missouri, Kentucky, and Germany.  After being honorably discharged, he spent the next 32 years in the banking industry, working at Beneficial Finance in Tulsa and Miami, Okla. (1965-1970); City National Bank in Pittsburg, Kan. (1970-1977); and The Bank of Carthage (later known as Boatmen’s Bank) in Carthage, Mo. (1977-1997).  

During his time in Carthage, Steve participated in numerous community organizations, including the Carthage Chamber of Commerce (president, 1981) and Kiwanis.   He left banking in 1997 and spent the next 15 years in retirement on the farm north of Carl Junction that he and his family had called home since 1971. Throughout his adult life, Steve was an active farmer and rancher, raising Herford cattle and American Quarter Horses.  He was a member of the Carl Junction Masonic Lodge No. 540 A.F.&A.M. and a 32° Scottish Rite Mason.

In 1982, Steve was diagnosed with cancer of the head and neck, which he fought valiantly and overcame.  When this cancer resurfaced in an inoperable form earlier this year, Steve and his family celebrated the fact that he had been cancer-free for 30 years.  Everyone involved viewed this as a significant achievement, given the fact that the doctors in 1982 had given him only six months to live.  

Steve married Ruth Ann Watts, on May 17, 1964, at the Alba United Methodist Church; she survives at the home.  Other survivors include two sons: Brad Hodson and his wife, Sue, Pittsburg, Kan., and Matt Hodson and his wife, Rebecca, Webb City, Mo.; a sister, Nancy Hodson, of Springfield, Mo.; a brother, David Hodson, of Joplin, Mo.; six grandchildren, who loved their Papa: Hannah Hodson, Wyatt Hodson, Abby Hodson, Kate Hodson, Avry Hodson, and Dan Hodson; and many other family and friends, each of whom he loved dearly.  He was preceded in death by his parents.

Services for Steve will be held on Saturday, July 7, at 10 a.m. at the Alba Friends Church, 110 Berry Street, Alba, Mo.  The Reverend Bob Simon will officiate at this celebration of Steve's life.  A graveside service will follow at the Friends Cemetery in Purcell, Mo.  The family will receive friends on Thursday from 5:30-7 p.m. at Parker Mortuary in Joplin. In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made in Steve’s memory to the Stephen E. Hodson Scholarship at the Missouri Southern State University Foundation.