Hardee E. “Gene” Drayer
Hardee E. “Gene” Drayer, 92, of Hadley, PA passed away peacefully surrounded by his family at 10:30 AM on July 10, 2023.
Gene was born on June 24, 1931 in Clarion County, PA to the late Charles and Rosie Drayer.
He graduated from Sligo High School in 1948 and later served two years in the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict stationed at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Aberdeen, MD, attaining the rank of Corporal.
Gene married his wife of 67 years, the former Louise Jean Bowser, on November 12, 1955.
She survives at home.
Gene earned his Bachelor of Science degree from Clarion State College while working full-time at the Clarion Western Auto store to support his family.
From 1961-1987, he taught mathematics at Reynolds High School while working most summers and weekends at the Clarion Western Auto during which time he also earned his master’s degree.
A lifelong member of the Rimersburg (Wildcat) Wesleyan Methodist Church, Gene taught a men’s Sunday School class for more than 40 years and often filled the pulpit in the absence of several ministers over the years.
Gene and his wife faithfully traveled from Hadley to Rimersburg every Sunday to fulfill their responsibilities at the church in which they grew up for nearly 50 years until age and distance became prohibitive.
Gene’s favorite pastime was fishing, and he enjoyed many productive years after his retirement trolling for Walleye on Lake Erie and catching panfish on Lakes Wilhelm and Pymatuning.
Many friends and family members will remember the numerous fish fries Gene and Jean hosted at the old Wildcat Schoolhouse for which they prepared and deep fried in excess of 300 fish filets to serve well over 100 people and expected nothing in return.
His family will most remember Gene for his quick-witted sense of humor, his valuable life-lessons both spoken and observed, and his unwavering faith in God.
In addition to his wife, Gene is survived by a daughter, Patricia Keeling of Hadley; three grandchildren, Jeffrey (Hannah) Keeling of Adamsville, PA, Douglas (Nancy) Keeling of Hadley, PA, and Lynn (Patrick) Willaman of Stump Creek, PA; five great-grandsons, Jacob Willaman, Jackson Keeling, Aaron Willaman, Jay Keeling, and Joshua Keeling; a brother, Hilton Drayer of Rimersburg, PA; three sisters-in-law, Linda Drayer, Joan (Ron) Custer, and Minnie Colwell, all of Rimersburg, PA; and numerous nephews and nieces.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a son, James Drayer; an infant grandson, Darren Keeling; three brothers, Clarence Drayer, Robert Drayer, and Harry Drayer; and a sister, Louise Yoder.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Robert L. Snyder Funeral Home and Crematory, Sheakleyville, PA.
A funeral service will be held on Monday, July 17, 2023 at the Rimersburg (Wildcat) Wesleyan Methodist Church, PA-861 Rimersburg, PA 16248 with the Rev. Mark Deeter officiating.
Family and friends may call at the church from 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM prior to the service.
Interment will follow at the Rimersburg Cemetery, 8768 Cemetery Lane Rimersburg, PA 16248.
Online condolences may be shared with the family at https://www.snyderfh.com/.
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