Merritt Asa Eatherton, 84, of Columbia City went quickly, but safely and peacefully home to his Lord and Savior at Parkview Whitley emergency room, Columbia City at 3:37 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010.
He was born Sept. 9, 1926 in Fostoria, Ohio, a son of Asa Brayton and Nora Mae (Vanderhoff) Eatherton.
Merritt was raised in Fostoria and Wharton areas and graduated from Wharton High School with the Class of 1944. He proudly served in the United States Navy and April 23, 1947 he married the love of his life, Maxine Joan Corbin at the Wharton Church of God parsonage. They began their married life by operating an 80-acre dairy farm for many years. In the meantime, he also worked for Cobey Farm Equipment and other Cobey enterprises in Bucyrus, Kenton and Gallion, Ohio. He retired after 20 years service as the vice president and general manager of Eagle Crusher in Gallion. In 2004 he and his wife moved to Columbia City to be near family.
He was a member of Wharton and Columbia City Churches of God. At the Wharton Church of God he served as an elder for 32 years, Sunday school superintendent for 15 years, Sunday school teacher for 20+ years, deacon and chairman of church board. He also had an amazing 54 years of perfect attendance at the Wharton Church of God. For the Ohio Conference of the Churches of God, he served on the board of finance as treasurer, financial secretary, president of Laymanâ€™s Association and on the executive board as member at large. He also taught and served as a dean at Camp Otyokwah. For the Churches of God General Conference, he served as president of C.G.W.B for six years, delegate to General Conference and for several years he served as trustee of Winebrenner Seminary, Findlay, Ohio, where he also attended classes to further his education. He was a very active member of the Wyandot County Camp of Gideonâ€™s International, before moving to Indiana in 2004 to be near family. Merritt was an avid Ohio State sports fan. He enjoyed taking his grandchildren to sporting events and he loved anything shared with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Maxine Joan Eatherton, Columbia City; two children, Bob (Deb) Eatherton of Columbia City and David (Bethany) James of Grandview, Tenn.; three grandchildren including, April (Stephen) Isar and Christin (Adam) Jones, both of Fort Wayne and Jennie James of Lincoln, Neb.; three great-grandchildren, Alissa Mae Isar, Sierra Dahlia Isar and Joanna Maxine Jones, all of Fort Wayne; one brother, Dale Lavern Eatherton of Fostoria and one sister, Ruth Louise Mathias of Fostoria.
He is preceded in death by one brother, Maynard Francis Eatherton and two sisters, Olive Mae Rathbunn-Gilhouse-Gilette-Kimble and Janet Kay Krupp-Stock.
Visitation will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday and from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, both at DeMoney-Grimes Countryside Park Funeral Home, 600 Countryside Drive, Columbia City. Funeral services will be held at the funeral home at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday with Pastors Jim Martin and Johnny McCallister, of the First Church of God, Columbia City, officiating. Visitation will also be held at the Wharton Church of God, Cass Road, Wharton, Ohio from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday with funeral service immediately following with Pastor Joe Carney, officiating. Committal services with military graveside rites will follow in the Wharton-Richland-Union Cemetery, Wharton.
Memorial bequest may be given in Mr. Eathertonâ€™s memory to either the First Church of God Building Fund, Wharton Church of God Mission Fund or to Gideonâ€™s International. Envelopes will be available through the funeral home.
To send family condolences or to sign the guest register, log on to www.demoneygrimes.com.