James Archie King, 87, of Parsons died Saturday, June 16, 2012, at his home.
He was born Jan. 15, 1925, at Rocky Ford, Colo., to James B. and Kathryn V. King. The family soon relocated to Anabel, Mo., where his brothers, Louis, Edward and sister, Karen, were born. Their family farm received The Cadillac Farm designation in the 1950s for following advanced conservation practices and agriculturally approved methods for that time period.
Archie graduated high school in Macon, Mo. He attended college at the University of Missouri at Columbia. Archie moved to Parsons in 1949 and worked for the Gas Service Co.
He married Orris T. Somers on Aug. 28, 1950. They later divorced. He had six children, Steven E. King, Rita King England, Rosemary King Gillespie, Carol King Chrisman, Brenda King Carrieri and James K. King.
He was employed at the Gas Service Co. for 17 years and farmed his entire life. Although he suffered from serious vision loss for most of his life he was able to accomplish remarkable mechanical and agricultural tasks as well as or better than someone with full sight. He lived on the farm independently, caring for machines, animals and crops. Archie loved the land and spent his life embracing nature. Another of his favorite moments was dining with friends at several cafes around Parsons. He was warmly welcomed upon entering the restaurants by many friends.
Survivors include his siblings, Louis and Helga King, Edward and Mary Ann King, Karen and Jerry Dickson; children, Rita King and John England, Rosemary and Clarke Gillespie, Carol and Edgar Chrisman, Brenda and Sam Carrieri, Jimmy and Alisa King; grandchildren, Paul Sperlich, Lindsay Furber, Lucas and Wade England, Katherine and Elizabeth Conaway, Kirby Lambert, Sam and Hannah Chrisman; three great-grandchildren; long-time friends, Gary LaForge, Jim Hammans and Bob and Carla Myers.
The family extends thanks to the Harry Hynes Hospice for its loving care and to the Berean Baptist Church for reaching out to him in the end.
Archie was preceded in death by his parents; his eldest son, Steven; and longtime friend, Mildred Gouvion.
The memorial service will be at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at Wesley United Methodist Church at Parsons. Burial will be in Bethlehem Cemetery at Anabel, Mo. Friends may call at the Carson-Wall Funeral Home to register.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to KU Audio Reader, a public service for the blind. These may be left at or mailed to the funeral home, P.O. Box 942, Parsons, 67357.
Online condolences may be left at www.wallfuneralservices.com.