Private graveside services for family only for Lieutenant Colonel Richard W. (Dick) Spurgeon, U.S. Air Force, Ret., will be held Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017, with full military honors provided by Vance Air Force Base Honor Guard. Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Ladusau-Evans Funeral Home, Enid, Okla. Dick was born Oct. 9, 1930 in Perry, Iowa to Blounte and Margaret (Tilley) Spurgeon, and passed away Monday, July 31, 2017 in Meno, Okla.
Dick Spurgeon led a storied life. Growing up in Perry, Iowa, he joined the USAF in it’s infancy and helped build it. Starting as a private, he rose to the rank of Lt. Col. First radar mechanic, then pilot. He was fond of saying that when he joined, the Air Force was still trying to figure airplanes out. “They wanted us to fly everything!” And he did. Fighters, bombers, and transports; over fifty aircraft types. Dick was chosen to instruct on nearly every one of them.
He retired in 1973 as the T-37 Training Squadron Commander at Vance Air Force Base. He then took a job delivering Cessna aircraft all over the world. More than forty solo crossings of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans – often in single engine airplanes with little more than a map and compass. When it was time to stop flying, he turned to growing wheat. First protecting our nation, then feeding it. Dick enjoyed numerous hobbies and activities including hunting and fishing, NRA member, woodworking, restoring antique cars, photography, and camping with friends. A storied life indeed.
Dick is preceded in death by his parents, Blounte and Margaret Spurgeon; wife, Marge Newport Spurgeon; sister, Jean Spurgeon Guinn; and brother, Gary Keith Spurgeon. He is survived by his wife Verna Spurgeon, of the home in Meno; daughter, Debbie Skow and husband Ron, of Normandy Park, Wash.; two step-daughters, Kathy Kerfoot, of Meno, Okla.; Carol Carpenter and husband Mark, of Enid, Okla.; two step-grandchildren; and two step-great-grandchildren.
Memorials in Dick’s name may be made to Ross Hospice, the Veterans Administration, or the charity of one’s choice with Ladusau-Evans Funeral Home serving as custodian of the funds.
Condolences may be made at www.ladusauevans.com.