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The Carthage Press
  • Lee Otis Sparks

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    Lee Otis Sparks, age 83 of Joplin, passed away at his home 7:15 p.m. on Thursday, July 12, 2012 after a long illness.


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    Lee Otis Sparks, age 83 of Joplin, passed away at his home 7:15 p.m. on Thursday, July 12, 2012 after a long illness.

    Born May 20, 1929 in Ima, New Mexico, he had lived in the Joplin area since 1978, moving from California. A U.S. Air Force veteran of the Korean War, he held the rank of Sergeant and served as an aircraft mechanic. Lee received his master’s degree from Oklahoma University at Norman and was a science teacher and worked as a truck driver during the summers. In the late 1970s, he drove trucks full time, became an owner-operator for Allied Van Lines, Special Products Division and leased a fleet of trucks. He was a Baptist.

    On Oct. 5, 1952 he married Carole Ann Greene in Thompson Falls, Mt. She preceded him in death on June 12, 2006. A son, Kevin El Sparks, also preceded him in death on March 9, 2005.

    Survivors include a son, Bryan Lee Sparks of Joplin; a daughter, Kimberly Sue Jones of Carl Junction; a son, Jonathon Sparks and wife Tamra of Neosho; eight grandchildren, Amanda Royster and husband Cameron, Alexandra, Juliana, Kailee and Dalton Jones, Megan, Wade and Maranda Sparks; a sister, Idella Sparks Davis of Roswell, New Mexico; a brother, Avritt (Sandy) Sparks of Durango, Colo.; and many extended family.

    Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Parker Mortuary. The family will receive friends from 6-7 p.m. Wednesday at the mortuary. Memorial contributions may be made to Habitat for Humanity.

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