184. ROBERT CHARLES HADEN75,164,194,195 was born on 21 October 1885 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.100,196 He died on 11 January 1964 at the age of 78 in Wichita Falls, Wichita County, Texas.100,196
Warranty Deed. Dated 31 Dec 1909; Recorded 1 March 1910 in Fannin Co TX. Book 116, p. 540. For $700. Mary Jane Perkins Haden sold her house to R. C. Haden "part of the Original plat of the Town of Ladonia"
A. L. Clinkenbeard, Minister, First Christian Church, Ladonia, TX married Robert Charles Haden and Miss Audrey Earl White on 14 June 1909.
1910 Census: Charley and Audrey, married 1 year with a son "Baby Haden". Census Day was April 15; William born on the 7th.
Daddy Charles did register for the World War I draft at age 32, 6 Sep 1918. Born 21 Oct 1885. He gave his employment as a Merchant & Cotton Broker. Audrey Earl Haden was listed as his nearest relative. His description was tall, slender build, blue eyes, blond hair.
1920 Census on Bonham Street next door to parents. Merchant - Retail Grocer.
1930 Census [both Charlie & his father were listed as Paris Street - their houses were on corners across Paris St but faced Bonham St.] Charlie R. Haden was age 45, he had married at age 23; Occupation was Salesman of "Truck Plants". Audrey was age 43. William C., son, age 19 was engaged in his father's business and listed with the same occupation. Robert was 15, John was 9. Henrietta White, Audrey's mother was now living with the family. She was a widow, age 68, but had married at age 18; she was born in Iowa. Her parents listed as born Illinois but it was Indiana.
The Commerce Journal, Commerce TX
10 Oct 1924
EAR CORN - Write for our car lot prices on good sound dry ear corn delivered your station. We allow inspection on all shipments. R. C. Haden. Ladonia, TX
[This ad was placed several times during the Fall of 1924.]
There is a family story which took place in the mid 1920's. The family went for a Sunday drive to Bug Tussle soon after obtaining their first car - Bug Tussle was a crossroads and country store relatively near Ladonia. The three boys rode in the back seat. They tried to talk to their Dad several times, and he shushed them saying he had to concentrate on his driving. Finally, Robert insisted that there was something Daddy needed to know. Turned out the youngest son John had fallen through a hole in the wooden floor a few miles back. They did go back and find John, unhurt.
Many members of the Haden family, as well as other Fannin Co families, used to summer in Colorado to escape the wicked Texas heat. Daddy Charles and Augie were no exception. Apparently one year, Daddy Charles either went along or remained. The following letter was written on his business letterhead but sent from Colorado:
W. C. Haden
Fruit and Vegetable
Springdale, Ark marked out and replaced with Manitou, Colo.
Oct. 27 - 1933
Weather continues perfect here and I am getting along fine, take a long walk daily and eat all my meals at our apartment, have not eaten a single meal out yet. Don't see how I can stay much longer but am going to stay until have one spell of bad weather, think though you can expect me home in about ten days. If you get chance to go anywhere and see coat you want get it. I want you to get one that really suits you even it it takes $90.00. also get that furniture you have been wanting when you see the kind you want.
Ladonia News: Friday, July 21, 1939
Flowers For the Living - R. C. Haden
R. C. Haden, owner and founder of the Plant and Seed mail order business, using the slogan: "Quality Plants, the Kind that Grow" has ably and conclusively demonstrated the fact it is not where you have a business but how you conduct it that counts.
Most persons when they think of establishing a business, especially a new one, are prone to think that there is no room for an old business, nor a place where a new one could prosper. It is notely remarkable how many people that that a success cannot be made of any new venture, --excepting that it be launched in a large town or city, but there is plenty of evidence that it does not matter where your business is located if you have the ability to put it over.
We think one of the most outstanding examples of building a big business in a little town is that of our esteemed fellow townsman, R. C. Haden, who ships his merchandise into every state in the U.S.A. Charlie has made a considerable fortune and established a reputation for handling high class merchandise, rendering A-1 service, and is rated in Dun & Bradstreet as one of the substantial firms of the southwest.
He is the son of J. B. Haden, a pioneer merchant of Ladonia and had his business training in his father's store here, but when the time came for him to, "Go on his own" he decided what he wanted to do and with no thought but that he would succeed and with the idea that no better place than Ladonia could be found, he proved to one and all, that success depends entirely upon one's ability to think up a constructive program and put it into execution.
Charlie was early married to Miss Audrey White, of this city, and to them were born three sons, William Charles, Robert and John. William Charles and Robert are associated with their father in the business and John is in the State University preparing to become a lawyer.
In the last few years he acquired extensive interests in the rich alluvial lands near Springdale, Ark., where he raises most of the products he sells. For this reason he spends a part of each season at Springdale. In talking with his brother Will, we learn that Charlie is convalescing from an attack of pneumonia which has kept him confined to his home for several days.
What we started out to say is that there is just as many, and just as good, opportunities as there ever was and that it is not necessary to act on the advice of the R.R. magnate, the late. J. J. Hill, -- "Young man, go west," to become a business success, but simply do like Charlie, have an idea and put it over.
We also think that Charlie has proven that Ladonia is an ideal place to locate a new business or keep on with an old one.
Ladonia News; Friday, July 16, 1943. Mr. & Mrs. R. C. Haden, left Tuesday for Springdale, Ark., where they will remain thru the season.
Ladonia News: Friday, Aug 8, 1947
Joe Haden Jr. has joined his brother R. C. in Manitou Springs, Colorado, for a vacation where the ozone is especially cool and acceptable.
Died while living at the home of his son, John. Buried Ladonia City Cemetery, Ladonia TX
Texas Death Certificate #06617
Robert Charles Haden died at Bethania Hospital, Wichita Falls, TX; his usual residence was Ladonia, TX
Born 21 Oct 1885 in Ladonia, he was 78 when he died, 11 Jan 1964. He was retired from the wholesale produce business and was married. His father was J. B. Haden; his mother Elizabeth [unknown]. John Haden was the informant. He died of a pulmonary embolism complicated by senility and malnutrition. He was buried Ladonia Cemetery.
Obituary: R. C. Haden
Funeral services for R. C. Haden, 78, of Wichita Falls and Ladonia, Tex., who died Jan. 11, were held Monday, Jan. 13, at the First Christian Church of Ladonia with the Rev. Leonard Richardson officiating. Burial was at Ladonia.
Mr. Haden, the father of W. C. and Robert Haden of Springdale was a resident of Springdale for many years while in the fruit and vegetable business before his retirement.
He is survived by his widow, Mrs. Autrey [Audrey] Haden; three sons, W. C. and Robert Haden of Springdale and John Haden, of Wichita Falls; seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Probably from "The Springdale News" Handwritten date of 1964.
From The Paris News, Paris, Texas, 13 Jan 1964
Entered Into Eternal Rest, Saturday, Jan 11, 1964
Robert C. Haden
Ladonia -- Funeral Services for a former Ladonia merchant, Robert Charles Haden, 78, who died Saturday in Wichita Falls, were set for 2:30 p.m. Monday in First Christian Church here. The Rev. Leonard Richardson, Bonham pastor, had charge. Delta Funeral Home arranging burial in the Ladonia Presbyterian Cemetery.
Born in Ladonia, Oct 21, 1885, the son of Mrs. and Mrs. J. B. Haden, R. C. Haden married Miss Audrey White. They moved to Wichita Falls about three years ago.
Surviving besides Mrs. Haden are these sons: William Charles Haden and Robert Haden, Springdale, Ark., and John Haden, Wichita Falls, and 10 other descendants.
Daddy Charles and Augie were married for 55 years.
ROBERT CHARLES HADEN and AUDREY EARL WHITE were married on 14 June 1909 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.127,197 AUDREY EARL WHITE, daughter of JOHN SEBASTIAN WHITE and HENRIETTA "ETTA" WISHARD, was born on 18 December 1887 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.198,199 She died on 13 July 1984 at the age of 96 in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas.100
The 1900 Census lists Audrey as age 7, born December 1892, making her some five years younger than thought? However, she herself recorded her birth as 18 Dec 1887. In one place she indicated she had graduated at age 20.
Graduated from Ladonia High School in Class of 1907; May 30, 1947 Ladonia News.
A note of Audrey's states that she graduated April 7, 1907.
Audrey made several notes detailing names, birthdays, marriages, deaths in the family. She wasn't always correct but her notes were very helpful in solving some of the family puzzles. One note was written on a business notepad of her son John and tells the following story.
Farmers and Merchants State Bank of Ladonia
October 4, 1973
Ladonia Bank Robbed
Friday, Sept 28, 1973, the Ladonia Bank was robbed. Working there were Francis (Land) Fields and Hazelle (Land) Hicks, Linabelle Brawley, Jennette Duncan, Susie Hayes, and Delores Middlebrooks. Francis, Hazelle and Delores were put in the vault. The bank was also robbed in 1930 and on 17 Aug 1968.
Will dated 14 May 1975. All estate to pass to three sons: William Charles, Robert, and John, share and share alike; Robert to be executor.
Last Will and Testament
State of Texas
County of Fannin.
Know all men by these presents: That I, Audrey E. Haden, of Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas, being of sound and disposing mind and memory, do hereby make, publish and declare this my last will and testament, revoking all wills and codicils heretofore made by me.
I. I desire to be buried in a Christian-like manner, suitable to my station in life.
II. I direct that all of my just and legal debts be paid by my Executor out of my estate as soon after my death as is practicable.
III. It is my will that all of my estate of every description, real, personal and mixed, of whatever kind and wherever situated shall pass to and vest in fee simple in my three sons, to-wit: William Charles Haden, Robert Haden and John Haden, share and share alike. In event any one of my said sons should predecease me, then the share which he ordinarily would receive shall pass to and vest in his child or children.
IV. It is my will that Robert Haden shall be Independent Executor of my estate, and no bond shall be required of him as such, and the Courts shall have nothing to do with the administration of my estate other than to require the probating of this will and filing of an inventory, appraisement and list of claims as require by law.
Witness my hand at Ladonia, Texas, this the 14th day of May 1975. Signed: Audrey E. Haden
Signed in her presence and presence of each other. Wit: Linnie B. Braley, Kay Hamlin.
Subscribed and acknowled by testatrix and witnesses, 14 May 1975.
Frances Fields, Notary Public, Fannin Co, TX
Audrey died in a nursing home in Springdale, Arkansas, where two of her sons lived at that time. Buried Ladonia City Cemetery, Ladonia TX
The probate Court, as filed by Robert Haden, Executor of Audrey E. Haden, 16 Apr 1985, showed the total of her estate to be $101, 841.74. Stocks and cash were distributed equally to the three sons, after deduction of expenses. Strangely her funeral expenses were not included, although I have a copy of the statement from Sisco Funderal Chapel in Springdale. Total cost including the transfer of the body to Texas was $2998.50.
ROBERT CHARLES HADEN and AUDREY EARL WHITE had the following children:
|WILLIAM CHARLES "Bill" HADEN was born on 7 April 1910 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.200 He died on 11 September 1992 at the age of 82 in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas.200 |
John Haden story:
When William was in High School (school went through 11 grades only) he was in study hall when a group of elementary children were practicing the "Star Spangled Banner". Willie stood up and wouldn't sit down until the song ended. He was asked what his parents would say about his behavior. His reply: "They'd think they had a very patriotic son!"
May 30, 1947 Ladonia News listed graduates up through that year. William graduated in 1928, along with neighbor Bernice Fuller, his best friend Bill Hulsey, cousin Anna Bell Wishard and one of Lois's Fry cousins, Bessie. I have his graduation invitation and all the cards, apparently from his gifts. Commencement was held Friday evening, May twenty fifth at eight-fifteen o'clock, High School Auditorium. I also have a copy of the Senior play, "At the End of the Rainbow", a College Comedy in Three Acts, by Lindsey Barbee. William played the part of Stanley Palmer, also called "Hawkins, the Butler". The Play was presented 26 Dec 1927.
During the school 1828-29, William attended North Texas Agricultural College. It has formerly been a military school and until 1933 had a high school unit. I have pictures of William in a military appearing uniform. One letter to his grandmother states that he would rather be studying art - in the most beautiful handwriting. He also thanked his grandmother for the candy she sent him. That letter as well as those written to him while he was in business college had been saved in a candy box - assorted chocolates from Jacobs of New Orleans. I very much suspect this is the box that came from his grandmother - the thank you letter is addressed to Mrs. J. B. Haden, Sr. of Ladonia, Texas, dated 16 Dec 1929. A piece of tape on the bottom of the box reads "Perisha(ble) PLEAS(E)... From R. C. Had (en) Low (quite possibly Lowell, Arkansas).
Apparently sometime in 1929 or 1930 William entered Metropolitan Business College in Dallas. I have copies of a lot of letters his parents sent to him, beginning with 8 Sep 1930 when he was applying to re-enter the school. He also asked his father about attending Texas A & M but was told that wasn't a good idea. Over the next couple of years, he did attend the business college, dropping out on occasion to help his father in his business. The letters end as he is preparing to take exams to graduate on May of 1931. I don't know if he did pass or not. He told us years later that he had worked at a bank in Dallas after attending business school but had to leave to go home and run his father's business. He seemed to consider this a turning point in his life. Many of the letters speak to him both about his spending habits and his failure to apply himself. His father discusses his own ill health in nearly every letter. They are altogether quite sad.
Lois and Bill Haden eloped. They were married at 5:30 PM on the 25th day of Nov. 1932 by Rev. Ernest Quick, minister of the 1st Baptist Church of Hugo OK. Witnesses: were Mrs. Quick and Winifred Quick. The marriage was recorded on p.179 of Book 23 in Choctaw Co OK. A note by Lois in her "wedding book" said the weather was "a beautiful crisp autumn day".
William's grandfather Joseph B. Haden, noted in his diary for this day, "Our grandson William, married."
I found his Draft Classification cards for World War II. In July of 1943, he was classified as II-A because he had dependants; by Sept this was no longer a legitimate exception so he was reclassified as I-A, or available for military service, but in Oct of 1943, William was classified II-C - deferred because his occupation was necessary to farm labor. Both his brothers served - Robert in the Navy and John as a Marine pilot.
William C. "Bill" Haden, 82, of Springdale died Friday, Sept 11, 1992, at his home. Born April 7, 1910 at Landonia [sic-Ladonia], Texas, the son of Robert Charles and Audrey White Haden, he was a retired partner of the Lowell Seed Company. He was a Baptist. He was preceded in death by his wife, Lois Haden, in 1988.
Survivors are three sons, Jim Haden of Little Rock, Don Haden of Wetumpka, Ala., and Ralph Haden of Omaha, Neb.; two brothers, Robert Haden of Springdale and John Haden of Bedford, Texas; eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Graveside services will be at 2 p.m. Monday in Bluff Cemetery with the Rev. Burton A. Miley officiating. Arrangements are by Sisco Chapel of Springdale.
The family will receive friends from 6 to 7 p.m. today at the funeral home.
Memorials may be made to NARTI, 5835 W. Sunset, Springdale, 72762.
Buried Bluff Cemetery, Springdale, AR
|Ralph White HADEN201,202 was born on 10 June 1912 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.203 He died on 16 May 1913 at the age of 0 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.203 |
Baby was scalded with hot lard. He pulled a towel off the cabinet - the pan of melted lard was sitting on the towel. William C. told us he was badly burned on the face and head.
"Ralph Haden Dead"
About noon last Friday, Ralph, the small son of Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Haden overturned a bowl of hot grease and received burns upon the hands and arms from which he died about 10:30 that night. The funeral services were at the residence on Bonham street by Rev. Clinkinbeard, burial at Presbyterian cemetery, Saturday afternoon. The profoundest sympathy is felt for the parents in the grief and anguish occasioned by their tragic loss.
"Card of Thanks"
We desire to express our heartfelt thanks to the many friends whose kindness and sympathy has helped so much to enable us to bear the great grief which has come upon us in the death of our darling baby. It will always be with loving hearts that we reflect upon your sympathetic words and deeds of kindness. Your loving sympathy in the time of our great sorrow has made us fell akin to all mankind. And our wish for you all is that, when your time comes to quit this old wold of tears and sorrow, you will be welcomed, at the Gates of Heaven , by little Ralph with out stretched hands and happy smile just as he was wont to greet everyone here on earth. Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Haden
In Ladonia newspaper, not dated. Other articles say "Monday night, May 19" and "next Wednesday, the 28"
Death Certificate from Ladonia, Fannin Co gives the boy's name simply as Ralph Haden. Died 16 May 1913, born 10 Jun 1912, age 11 months, 6 days. Father, Charlie Haden, born Ladonia. Mother's maiden name, White; born Fannin Co.
The cause of death was "Accidentental [Burn]" Signed D. B. Nelson, M.C.
Burial was in Presbyterian Cemetery on May 17th, Neal T. Scott, Undertaker.
|Robert HADEN204 was born on 13 October 1914 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.203 He died of lung cancer on 1 April 2000 at the age of 85 in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas.200 |
Robert graduated from Ladonia High School, Class of 1932; May 30, 1947 Ladonia News.
Obituary stated that he moved to Springdale, AR in 1949, first being a partner in the Lowell Seed Company [with his brother William and his father]. He worked for Thomas Fruit Co out of Joplin, MO, for 26 years.
Died of lung cancer at his home and buried Bluff Cemetery, Springdale, AR. His gravesite is listed in the U. S. Veterans Gravesite database.
AMMP1 US NAVY WORLD WAR II
|John HADEN164 was born on 7 February 1921 in Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas.203 He died on 12 October 2010 at the age of 89 in Texas. |
John was a very special person. He was interested in family and shared much with me in my endeavors to trace the Haden family. The Hadens were not generally a "close" family and did not always stay in touch with each other. John's family with two sons and a daughter, and my own with two sons and a daughter, were alike in many ways, including the fact that we were close-knit and proud of our family relationships. Both John, and my husband Don, had married, and moved away from their respective families to raise their own children. They were both hard-working, gentle, kind men, who left a never-to-be-forgetten legacy to their children and grandchildren. John had a definite influence on his nephew Don - the love of airplanes and flying and the dedication to their families was a part of that influence.
John graduated from Ladonia High School in the Class of 1938; May 30, 1947 Ladonia News.
Ladonia News; Friday, Sep 15, 1939: John Haden is visiting his grandparents Mr. and Mrs. Joe Haden, for a few days before returning to Austin where he will continue his studies in the University.
Ladonia News; Friday, Jan 4, 1940: Ben Ed Fry and John Haden left Tuesday for Austin where they will resume their work at the State University.
Ladonia News; Friday, Dec 11, 1942.
Lorino-Haden Rites Performed At Houston
The marriage of Miss Classy Merle Lorino, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. A. B. Lorino, to Lt. John Haden, Marine Air Corps, was solemnized Sunday at 8:30 pm at the First Christian Church, with Dr. Harry G. Knowles officiating. The groom is the son of Mr. & Mrs. Robert C. Haden of Springdale, Ark. and Ladonia, Texas.
....Mrs. E. H. Weinberg, attended her sister as maid of honor ...and the bridesmaids [were] Mrs. John Kinser and Miss Betty Bayne White of San Antonio.
...Lt. John Norton served as best man.
...The bride received her college education at the University of Texas, where she was a junior, and the groom was graduated from the University of Texas in June. He was a pledge of Kappa Alpha fraternity, president of Prather Hall and vice president of both the CAA and Breckenridge Hall. They will live in Corpus Christi, where the groom received his commission Friday and is now stationed temporarily. ------Houston Chronicle.
Ladonia News: Friday Dec 11, 1942.
John Haden Wins Coveted Medal
John Haden, son of Mr. & Mrs. R. C. Haden, Ladonia, recently was awarded the coveted "Navy Wings of Gold" and commissioned 2nd Lieut. in the U.S. Marine Corps at the Naval Air Training Center, Corpus Christi.
Lieut. Haden received his wings with the designation of a Naval Aviator from Rear Admiral E. A. Montgomery, USN, Commandant of the training center, at an impressive class graduation ceremony.
Haden volunteered for flight training in March, 1942, and received preliminary instructions at the US Naval Aviation Base, Dallas. Upon successful completion of this training he was transferred to Corpus Christi for intermediate and advanced training at the "University of the Air" the world's largest naval aviation training center.
In addition to flight instruction, Haden completed a thorough ground school course, including navigation, radio code, gunnery, and bombing theory, communications, and other aeronautical subjects. He is a former student of the University of Texas.
World War II and Korean Was Veteran. Captain in U.S. M.C. Fighter Pilot. Was shot down and injured during WWII. Received Distinguished Flying Cross "For heroism and extraordinary achievement in aerial flight as Pilot of a Plane in Marine Fighter Squadron 214 during operations against enemy aggressor forces in Korea on 6 October 1951. Responding to an urgent call for close air support when friendly ground forces were subjected to concentrated fire from a hostile battalion command post and four heavily defended artillery emplacements, Captain Haden skillfully led his flight over hazardous terrain to the target area in reduced visibility and initiated a series of daring attacks against the enemy. Despite intense hostile automatic-weapons fire, he continued to press determined bombing, napalm and strafing assaults, inflicting many casualties on the enemy and destroying the command post together with the artillery pieces. By his courage, skilled airmanship and devotion to duty, Captain Haden struck a damaging blow to the enemy and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service." For the President, C. S. Thomas, Sect of the Navy.
Listed in World War II Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard Casualties, 1941-45, on Ancestry.com.
Wounded. Texas. p.65
HADEN, John, Captain, USMCR. Wife, Mrs. Merle L. Haden, 1406 Hyde Park, Houston.
John's mother Audrey wrote several notes on pads identified as being from Wichita Falls in the early 1960's when John's parents were living with John and Merle there. One of the notepads has the heading:
The Steck Company
John Haden, Representative
Wichita Falls, Texas
Lithographing - Printing - Office Equipment
John Haden (1921 - 2010)
John Haden, 89, passed away Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2010, at a local health care facility. Funeral: 11:30 a.m. Monday in Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery 2000 Mountain Creek Parkway, Dallas. Father Carl Schilken of St. John the Apostle Catholic Church will officiate. Attendees must be in the proper lane at the cemetery by 11:15 a.m. Visitation: 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at Lucas Funeral Home, 1321 Precinct Line Road, Hurst. John's grandsons will serve as bearers of his casket. While attending the University of Texas, where he graduated with a BBA in 1942, he was introduced to his two loves, his wife, Merle Lorino, and the airplane. His intention of becoming an attorney was radically changed after attending his first air show. Upon graduation, he was commissioned in the Navy as a student naval aviation pilot. Two days after his commissioning he was married. John transferred into the Marine Corps where he flew a variety of aircraft ranging from the N2S Stearman to the F7F Tigercat. His favorite airplane, which he flew during World War II, was the F4U Corsair. John distinguished himself in combat while stationed in Okinawa and received the Air Medal as well as a Presidential Unit Citation for his service and airmanship during the war. Recalled into active duty during the Korean War, John was known as "Pappy Haden" and served in the famed Black Sheep Squadron (VMF-214). He was at home again in the cockpit and at the controls of an F4U Corsair. He was awarded the Gold Star in lieu of a second Air Medal and also received the Distinguished Flying Cross for his airmanship and heroism while assigned to the Black Sheep Squadron in Korea. After the Korean War John returned home to raise his family and pursue a career in the printing business. His love for flying never ended and in the mid '60s he returned to the air. This time he was piloting a Cessna 172 which enabled him to expand his sales territory while advancing his sales career. He continued to fly for many happy years with his co-pilot, his wife, Merle, who accompanied him on many of his flights. John and his wife of nearly 69 years attended St. John the Apostle Catholic church in North Richland Hills. He and his wife worked tireless hours at the Fort Worth Convention Center concession stands to help retire the church's construction fund debt. Throughout his life he served in numerous church-affiliated organizations providing a variety of services to the church. John was a wonderful father, husband and friend. He was very active in all aspects of his children's lives. He is especially remembered for his "do as I do" mentoring skills. He was an extraordinary role model to those who knew him. His legacy will live on through the lives of his children, grandchildren and great- grandchildren. John's battles did not end in Korea. During his later years he fought a long and arduous battle with esophageal cancer. John's wife and family extend our heartfelt eternal gratitude to the numerous physicians, nurses, technicians, therapists and allied staff members who were instrumental in extending John's life an additional six years. Particularly we offer our thanks to Dr. Haraish K. Dhingra and Pat, RN; Dr. Stephen S. Ferney and Louise, RN; Dr. Randall Davis; Dr. A.J. Dubey; Dr. J. Steven Burdick and Candice; Dr. Gary L. Jones and Wanda as well as Dr. Don Johnston. Special recognition also goes to the staff at Parkwood Healthcare Community in Bedford and lastly to Vitas Hospice. You have all been a gift to John and his family. John was preceded in death by a son, John Maurice Haden. Survivors: His wife of 68 years, Merle Haden; son, Tom Haden and wife, Beth; daughter, Mary Ann Steffek and husband, John Charles; grandchildren, Haden Anthony Steffeck and wife, Courtney, John Logan Steffeck, John Richard Haden and wife, Julie, Joseph Thomas Haden and wife, Gloria, Davis Anthony Haden and wife, Krisin, and Rita Jane Haden; great-grandchildren, Austin Matthew Steffeck, Jacqueline Elizabeth Steffeck, Kelsey Renee Haden, Nathalie Shey Haden, Grant Haden, Bret Haden, Megan Haden and Madison Haden; daughter-in-law, Linda Haden; sister-in-law, Jean Haden; and many nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family.
Published in Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas, on October 15, 2010
The following was written by John's son Jack when John developed esophageal cancer, and the outlook appeared uncertain. However, Jack died four years before his father did. Jack's son, Tony, read the following at John's service:
A little over 50 years ago, my great grandfather, our great grandfather died in the little town of Ladonia. A few months after his passing our grandfather was walking down the street and he overheard some of the men saying, “There goes Old Man Haden”.
Instinctually, he turned to see if his Dad was shuffling down the street behind him, only to realize that he was now “Old Man Haden”
Well, on ------------- I became “Old Man Haden”. This is a great honor that I hope to wear well for a long, long time. It’s an honor mainly because it was given to me by a real good guy; a man you have come today to honor and celebrate, a man who’s life was well lived and we thank you for joining us here today.
Now, most of you knew my dad as John, but he was a man of many names and many lives and as we celebrate his live I want to remember him in a manner that many of you may have not known.
By the way sit back and get comfortable, because I am not famous for short stories, and a life as well lived, as Dad’s deserves more than just a moment or two.
To you, he was John, to me he was Dad, to Tom and Mary Ann, Daddy, to his grandkids he was and always will be Pappy, but he started and ended his life as Johnny. Johnny was probably the first and last words he recognized on this earth. The two most important women in his life, his mother and my mother, always called him Johnny.
Very few people called him Johnny after he grew up. There is a small special group of people here today who brought Mary Ann, Tom and I secret pleasure every time they called him “Uncle Johnny”, our cousins – thank you for coming – we knew you’d be here.
After high school, Johnny went off to college at the university in Austin, a town 10 or 20 times larger than Ladonia. It had everything: streetcars, skyscrapers, elevators, towers, and the state capitol, even a stadium with seats on both sides of the field. Every where he looked and everything he saw cause him to say, “Mercy, look at that.” And with that, Johnny became “Mercy” at the University of Texas.
With the war, Mercy became Haden as in Cadet Haden, Lt. Haden, and finally Capt. Haden, until one Monday afternoon when at the ripe old age of 23 he became a father, my father and picked up a new nickname that would become his call sign, “Pappy”. From that day forward his squadron mates, fellow pilots, even his commanders called him Pappy.
When the war was won and the heroics history, Pappy came home and did the most heroic thing he ever did in his life, he put away the uniforms, the flight suits, the medals and memorabilia and he put on a suit, became John, the man most of you knew, and went to work raising a family.
Now, we all know that Dad loved being a fighter pilot, he loved flying, he loved the camaraderie of the Marine Corps, but he loved us more – so he did what most of you in his generation did – he went out, found a job and got to work.
I personally think that John did a great job with his work and with us, well 2 out of 3 ain’t bad and I finally came around myself, didn’t I?
About that time we began having kids of our own and Pappy was reborn with a brand new band of comrades a squadron of grandkids and now great grandkids. To almost all them, he was Pappy, except for Tom’s kids, Joe and John to whom he was always, to his delight, “Pappy My Man”.
So, to you and the rest of the world, he was mainly John, not a bad name, it’s mine and Logan’s, and John Richard’s. As most of you know, Jack is a nickname for John, which Mom & Dad bestowed on me in an effort to avoid the Big John, Little John thing and as it turns out Jack was also the name of Dad’s boyhood dog, so I am doubly honored today to stand before you as both the namesake of my father and of his first real companion.
By the way, we’ve dropped the tradition of naming our children after our dogs after we named our childhood dog, Mugsy; I’m sure much to the relief of Haden and Logan, John Richard and Joe, Tony and Rita; and more importantly to Kristin, Courtney, Gloria, and Julie, who I doubt would have probably ever even gone out with a boy named Mugsy.
So, there you have it, a short story of your friend John, who –
I like to think – that at the moment I was becoming “Old Man Haden” was walking through the Pearly Gates of Heaven where God looked up from his God book and smiled and said, “Mercy, welcome home; let’s sit and chat a bit about a life well lived.”