L.J. “Jay” Downey passed away peacefully in his home to be with the Lord on Friday, July 6, 2012, surrounded by his loving family.
Jay was born on Aug. 16, 1926, in Carthage, Mo., to Jess and Margaret (Frost) Downey. He was the sixth of eight children. Jay graduated from Carthage High School in 1945. After high school, he apprenticed as a meat cutter alongside his brother, James, in southern California. Following World War II, in which he served stateside at Fort Dix, N.J., as a Supply Sergeant, he resumed meat cutting and began a lifetime profession cutting meat and managing meat markets for Safeway, A & P and Consumers in California, Missouri and Kansas.
Jay married Edith Mae Favinger on Nov. 5, 1948. They resided in Anaheim, Calif., from 1948-1967, when they returned to make their home in Carthage. Edith was the love of his life for 63 years. She survives. To this union were born two daughters who survive along with their spouses; Margaret and Gary Richardson, Springfield, Mo., and Deborah and Tom Swarens, Carthage; four granddaughters and their spouses who survive: Sara and Wesley Hall, Emily and Clinton Jenkins, Miriam and Donnie Minter, and Lynne and Alan McGhee; and six great-grandchildren: Xander Holman Jenkins and Chloe Jenkins, Warner Hall, Jediah Minter, and Gavin and Kylie McGhee. Jay was very proud of his family and loved spending time with them.
In addition to his children and grandchildren, Jay has one surviving sister, Phyllis Hamilton, Carthage, an honorary daughter, Paula Richardson, Carthage, and many nieces and nephews and friends. Special friends of late were Jodi and Brandy Miller and their children Sausha, Zeb and Noah.
Jay loved his First Christian Church family having been raised in the church, married in the church and serving the church as a deacon, elder, and hospital equipment worker.
He was also involved in many civic organizations. Jay served as a Carthage City Councilman and at one time served on the police hiring board for the Carthage Police Department. He was also a long-time member and past commander of the American Legion Post 0009.
Jay had many hobbies but his favorites included refinishing antique furniture and tinkering with Studebaker cars. He was a member of the Ozark Trails Studebaker Club for many years and enjoyed the fellowship he had with those club members.
Jay was preceded in death by his parents, brothers James, Harold, Donald and Jess “Doc” Downey, and sisters, Lorene Clinton and Velma Marietta.
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Ulmer’s Funeral Home with Ministers David Cook and Ed Hamilton officiating. Visitation will be held at the Ulmer Funeral Home on Monday, July 9, from 6–8 p.m. The funeral will be held at the First Christian Church on Tuesday, July 10, at 10 a.m. with burial to follow at Paradise Cemetery, Jasper, Mo. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Mr. and Mrs. Sunday School Class of First Christian Church. Online condolences may be sent at www.ulmerfh.com.
Page 2 of 2 - The family wishes to acknowledge and thank Dr. Richard Williams and his staff, Drs. Robert Carter and Bruce Chosney and their staff, Heart to Heart in Home Care and Hospice Compassus for their loving care of Jay over the years and in his last days at home.