AUGUSTA, Ga. - Mr. W. Ralph Hickman, 82, entered into eternal rest on Friday, September 14, 2007, at the Georgia War Veteran's Home.
Funeral services were held at Platt's Funeral Home Chapel, Belair Road, today Monday, September 17, 2007, at 2 p.m. with the Rev. Lloyd C. Greene and Rev. Charlie K. DeLoach officiating. Burial followed at Westover Memorial Park.
Mr. Hickman is survived by his beloved wife of almost 57 years, Barbara Q. Hickman. They would have celebrated their wedding anniversary on September 16. Other survivors include a son, William Randall Hickman and wife, Susan, of Thomson; a daughter, Valerie Hickman Merrill of Reston, Va.; a daughter, Pamela Hickman Stroud and husband Phillip C. Stroud of Evans; granddaughter, Eleanor Merrill Smith and husband, James C. Smith of Birmingham, Ala.; granddaughter, Elizabeth Anne Hickman of Las Vegas, Nev.; grandson, Matthew Phillip Stroud and granddaughter, Caroline Elizabeth Stroud both of Augusta; a sister, Carolyn H. Strange of Loganville, Ga.; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Mr. Hickman was preceded in death by his parents, John Chandler and Cleva Oliver Hickman; brother, John C. Hickman; and a grandson, Jonathan Phillip Stroud.
A World War II Veteran, Mr. Hickman proudly served his country in the United States Navy as a radioman aboard the U.S.S. North Carolina. His career as a budget analyst with the Military Police School at Fort Gordon spanned over 25 years.
After retirement from federal civil service, he worked with the office of the Richmond County Tax Assessor and later with Avis Rental Car Services. Mr. Hickman was a member of Bayvale Baptist Church.
Born in the small farming community of Millhaven, Ga., and reared as a grocer's son in Girard, Ga., Mr. Hickman never lost his passion for the simple and enduring values born of his childhood in rural small town America of the 1930's: love of family, love of God, love of his country, and love of the earth. His family delighted in watching him lovingly care for his summer vegetable garden year after year, hand-crank a prized churn of peach ice cream, turn a juicy t-bone steak on the grill, or tinker with any car problem until it was fixed perfectly. He was a man of few words, but loved to pluck a guitar and sing the beautiful harmonies of hymns and folk songs. His love and commitment to the simple gifts in life of home and family will be his enduring legacy.
Active pallbearers were Michael C. Dorn, Stevie L. Green, Sidney L. Holland, Glenn C. Metts, James C. Smith, and Matthew P. Stroud. Honorary pallbearers were B. Eugene Jenkins, James M. Williams, Sr., and James M. Williams, Jr.
The family wishes to extend deepest thanks to the staff of the Georgia War Veterans Nursing Home and has requested memorial gifts be made to the Georgia War Veterans Nursing Home Patient Benefits Fund, 1101 15th Street, Augusta, Ga. 30901.