AVON, Ind. — Raymond “Jake” Parker, 92, formerly of Luke and Cumberland, was born March 25, 1920, in Piedmont, W.Va. and died Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012, in Avon, Ind.
His parents were Jacob and Edna Boyce Parker.
Raymond graduated from the Luke School and attended Bruce High School until dropping off to have major surgery. He would receive his GED diploma while serving in the military.
Raymond joined the Civilian Conservation Corps and then worked at the Celanese before being drafted into the Army in October of 1941. He served in the Panama Canal Zone, Australia and New Guinea. He next participated in the battle to liberate Luzon. It was in this battle that he earned the Bronze Star. He was discharged in 1945 as a Staff Sergeant.
On Jan. 15, 1947, Raymond enlisted in the Air Force and became a crew chief in aircraft maintenance. He participated in the Berlin Airlift in 1948. He was next in the Vietnamese Conflict, spending a year in that war zone. On Jan. 31, 1969, he retired as a Master Sergeant, having spent 26 years in the service of his country. Upon retirement, he was presented with the Air Force Commendation Medal for meritorious service in charge of the Missile Power Production at Francis E. Warren Air Force Base, Wy.
He previously earned the Combat Infantry Badge, Am-erican Defense, Asiatic-Pacific American Theatre Service, Philippine Liberation, Berlin Airlift and Good Conduct Ribbons.
Raymond and his wife, the former Margaret Ann Morrison Machin, relocated to Cumberland. He headed maintenance at Grant’s Store and then at Hills before permanently retiring. Following the death of his wife, he moved to Avon, Ind., where a special granddaughter, Shannon Flaherty, became his excellent caregiver.
Besides his parents and wife, Raymond was preceded in death by a brother, Carl Parker; step-daughter Emma Jean Webb and granddaughter Valeri Brock.
He is survived by three sisters, Mildred Ross, of Keyser, W.Va., Elaine Pendergast, of Bellbrook, Ohio and Mary Lou Metcalf, of Westernport and a brother, James Parker, of Luke. He is also survived by many nieces; nephews; grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Raymond was a very special person who touched the lives of many. He will be greatly missed.
At his request, the body was cremated and will be returned to Maryland at a later date.
Arrangements entrusted to Conkle Funeral Home Avon Chapel.
Online condolences may be shared at conklefuneralhome.com