Paul Elijah Hershey, 94, passed away on May 12, 2018, in Elkhart, Kansas. Paul was born on March 24, 1924, to Daniel Grover and Jessie Alice Hershey.
After graduating high school in Rolla, Paul served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, including duty in Arzen, Algeria and Bizerti, Tunisia aboard the U.S.S. LST 263. His ship was dry docked for repairs in Galveston, Texas, and was scheduled to go to the South Pacific, but Japan’s surrender and the end of the war altered those plans. After the war, he received an honorable discharge in 1946 and returned to Rolla to continue farming with his dad.
He met and married Rena Faye McGehee April 22, 1950, and lived on the family farm south of Rolla. Paul and Rena were happily married for 66 years until Rena’s death in July of 2016. Paul and Rena were very family oriented and their biggest enjoyment was spending time with their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He was a member and trustee of the First Baptist Church of Rolla. Paul was a competitor and enjoyed playing dominoes, pool, bowling and a variety of card games.
Paul was preceded in death by his wife Rena, parents, three sisters-Mary Alice, Oliva and JoAnne, and one brother Wayne.
Survivors include six children: Retta and husband Sam Eiland of Rolla, Kansas; Paula and husband Fred Lehman of Overland Park, Kansas; James and wife Susan of Conyers, Georgia; Mark and wife Jaine of Houston, Texas; David of Liberal, Kansas; and John and wife Letty of Edinburg, Texas; as well as 13 grandchildren, and 13 great-grandchildren; three sisters, Jessie Thompson of Hugoton, Kansas; Helene Armstrong of Ottawa, Kansas; and Betty Willis of Hugoton, Kansas.
Funeral service will be held Friday, May 25, 2018, at 2:00 PM at the First Church of God in Elkhart, Kansas, with Pastor Denny Huebner officiating. Interment will follow at the Rolla Cemetery with Military Funeral Honors by VFW Point Rock Post #3162. Friends may call Thursday, May 24, 2018, from 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM at Garnand Funeral Home in Elkhart. Memorials may be given to Rolla Hope in care of Garnand Funeral Home, PO Box 854, Elkhart, KS 67950.