Willard Earl Hefner

Willard Earl 
Willard Earl Hefner, age 78, of Lincoln, Missouri, passed away Monday, June 1, 2020, at the Lincoln Community Care Center. He was born in Wright County, Missouri, on June 25, 1941, to John Hefner and Claudia (Eaton) Hefner.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his first wife and mother of his four children, Lana Marie (Dennis) Hefner, and his brother Jefferson Montgomery Hefner.
Earl is survived by his wife, Carol, and his children, of whom he was very proud: Wills Hefner, and his wife Terri, Lisa Lynn Hefner, Geoffry Hefner, and his wife Rose Barber, Sarah Robertson, and her husband Don, a step-daughter, Rachel Williston, and her husband Keith. He is also survived by eleven beautiful and talented grandchildren whom he adored: Ashlea Hefner, Archie and Eli Robertson, Clayte and Garret Hefner, Michael, Sadie, and John Henry Hefner, and Samuel, David, and Jonathan Williston. Earl is also survived by his sister Helen Euler, the apple of his eye, and many loving nieces and nephews.
Known as Earl all his life, he was raised in Hartville, Missouri, and graduated from Mansfield High School in 1959. He spent much of his young adulthood working for Canteen Corporation, Wonder Bread, and Hostess. In 1985 he and his wife Lana became the first house parents of the Missouri Baptist Children’s Home in Mt. Vernon, Missouri. When his wife died he retired in 1990. At the end of 1991, he met and married his wife Carol, and together they had several adventures: as antiques dealers in Reeds Spring, Missouri and in Northern Michigan, where Earl was also a busy volunteer with Kalkaska Area Interfaith Resources; as long-distance driver for a car dealership in Wickenburg, Arizona; and as a full-time residential volunteer at Heifer International in Perryville, Arkansas, where Earl was the resident beekeeper, a hobby he had pursued over the years. The last years of his life were marred by a decline in his health, but Earl trusted in Jesus and kept active and involved with the Warsaw Senior Center and Mt. Pleasant Union Church, and by following his wife around to various volunteer venues.
Earl was a strong man, and man of faith. He was patient, kind, and knew how to turn his troubles over to Jesus instead of worrying about them. His body has been donated to the University of Kansas School of Medicine, and his remains will eventually be interred at Mansfield Cemetery. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Gifts or memorial may be given to Heifer International, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, or Dig Deep Water Project which provide wells for families on the Navajo Reservation.
Memorial services for Earl will be held on Saturday, July 4, 2020, at the Mt. Pleasant Church near Lincoln, at 11:00 A.M. with a visitation an hour before the service beginning at 10:00 A. M. Lincoln, at 11:00 A.M. with a visitation an hour before the service beginning at 10:00 A. M.