George Bouchard

June 25, 1959 – May 15, 2022

Karen Bouchard

Feb. 26, 1959 – June 10, 2022

George Bouchard, age 62, of Oronogo, passed away Sunday, May 15. George was born June 25, 1959, in St. Clair Shores, Mich. He was adopted by his Uncle Ernest Bouchard and Aunt Mary Bouchard, who both have preceded him in death. 

George Bouchard and Karen Smith were married on Dec. 29, 1993. 

Karen Bouchard, age 63, of Oronogo, joined George on Friday, June 10. Karen was born Feb. 26, 1959, in Kansas City to John and Charlette Knowlton (Steinberg), both preceding her in death. 

George and Karen have one son, Robert Smith (and Angela), of Neosho. They have three surviving grandsons, Jonathan Smith (and Rachel), Oronogo, Bryan Smith, Neosho, and Terran Smith, Neosho. They were preceded in death by one grandson, Christopher Smith. George and Karen have two great-grandsons, James Chapman and Caden Smith. 

George has one known surviving brother, Thomas Bouchard, of New Jersey. 

Karen was preceded in death by one brother, William Knowlton, Carthage. Survivors include four brothers, John Knowlton, Oklahoma City, Okla., Lary Knowlton (Patricia), Heath, Texas, David Knowlton (Jenny), Newport News, Va., and Donnie Schoonover, Norman, Okla.; five sisters, Mary Ann Prisch (Ron), Joplin, Charlene Evans, Joplin, Sharon Knowlton, Independence, Kan., Carol Rose (Kevin), Oklahoma City, and Sharon Moreno (Jesse), Bullhead City, Ariz.

George owned and operated the Oronogo Bar for over 10 years. He also worked in manufacturing at Aaron’s automotive in Joplin, and he worked in carpentry for the Economic Security Corporation until his early retirement due to health issues. George had incredible balance and coordination. He was a remarkable pool player, bowler, ice skater and roller-skater. He was also a martial artist. And he enjoyed singing, flying kites and picnicking and telling jokes.

Karen was in her first year of college at the age of 17, majoring in journalism and working part-time for a law office, when she became pregnant with her only child, Robert. She worked as a manager at different restaurants in the Joplin area until she joined George in owning and operating the Oronogo Bar. When they closed the bar, Karen worked over 20 years with Oxford Health Care as a caregiver for many. And when George became ill, she retired early in order to take care of him full-time. Karen enjoyed bowling and playing pool. She also enjoyed dancing, swimming and riding horses, and doing brain challenging activities. She was great with numbers and details. But more than anything, Karen enjoyed doing. gardening and other yard activities

A service will be held for both George and Karen at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 25, in Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery.


Juan Gonzalez Correa

May 27, 1994 – June 14, 2022

Juan Gabriel Gonzalez Correa, age 28, of Webb City, passed away on Tuesday, June 14. He was born on May 27, 1994, to Miguel Gonzalez and Lizette Phelps in Bayamon, Puerto Rico.

Juan was employed with General Mills in Joplin, where had worked over two years, recently being promoted to their logistics division. He went to Lockhaven University in Pennsylvania, achieving a bachelor’s degree in archaeology with a minor in the Spanish language. He enjoyed playing Quidditch, the game in the Harry Potter book series, and was a great soccer player.

He enjoyed his family, and was fiercely devoted to his mother, Lizette, whom he loved very much.

Juan is survived by his parents, Lizette (Mark) Phelps, of Webb City, and Miguel Gonzalez, of Florida; a brother Miguel A. Gonzalez Correa, Webb City; grandparents Gilberto Correa and Celia Correa, Bayamon; an aunt, Maria I. Correa, Bayamon; an uncle, Gilberto Correa, of Virginia; and numerous cousins, great aunts and great uncles.

A memorial service for Juan was held on Wednesday, June 22, at Simpson Funeral Home.


Buddy Drake

Sept. 11, 1965 – June 14, 2022

Buddy Joe Drake, age 56, passed peacefully in his home on Tuesday, June 14, surrounded by his children and grandchildren.

Buddy was born September 11, 1965 in Springfield, Missouri. He grew up in Webb City and Carterville. He was a lifelong mechanic who never took a day off. He enjoyed sponsoring others and preaching about the Lord. He took pride in his home and gardening skills. What he loved most was spending time with his grandchildren.

He leaves behind his children; Shantell & Husband Alfredo Carrillo, Vanessa & Husband James Azua, Amanda Drake, Abbigail McCammon, Cameron Drake. Grand Children; Aubrie, Sophia, Gabriel, Katalina, Consuelo, Corinthians, James Jr. and Keltyn Drake. Siblings; Jacke & Dwayne Pratt, John & Peggy Drake. He is preceded in death by his Mother Thelma Drake (Grady), Siblings; Larry Drake, Donna Agan, Mary Swinney.

Services to be held at a later date. Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Hedge-Lewis-Goodwin Funeral Home.


Jule Fryer

Oct. 25, 1939 – June 18, 2022

Jule Ann Fryer was born in Lamar to parents Harold and Erma Eales on Oct. 25, 1939, and entered into rest peacefully at her home in Webb City on Saturday, June 18. Jule was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, James Fryer, and her brother Thomas Eales.

Jule leaves behind her beloved son, John Fryer and wife Kim, as well as many grandchildren whom she adored, including Matthew Fryer and wife Ashley, Chelsea Mertens and fiancé Brian Graddy, Adam Mertens and wife Sarah, and Adysen Mertens. Jule also enjoyed spending time with her great-grandchildren Karissa Howey, Lily Graddy, Lola Graddy, Faith Fryer, and Bo Graddy. Anyone who met Jule knew that she cared deeply for all around her, but particularly enjoyed bragging on her family!

Jule was a hard worker who prided herself on her professional success and dedicated much of her life to helping clients, reaching achievements, and volunteering for causes she was passionate about. Following her career, Jule immersed herself in her family, friends, church, and travel. Jule was a cruise enthusiast who loved to share stories of her trips with friends. Later in life, Jule was known to share how blessed she had been to travel, see the world, and truly live.

Throughout her life, Jule held a strong Christian faith, and her family is comforted knowing they will see her again someday. Memorial contributions may be made to Christ Community Methodist Church of Joplin. Arrangements are under the direction of Mason Woodard Mortuary.


Shirley Weber

Sept. 22, 1938 – June 14, 2022

Shirley Ann Weber, age 83, Webb City, passed away on Tuesday, June 14, with family at her side at Mercy Hospital Joplin.

Shirley was born Sept. 22, 1938, in Gross, Kan., daughter of the late John Joseph Stroud and Lovena May (Maxwell) Stroud. She grew up in Kansas and graduated from Arcadia (Kan.) High School. She worked for years with graphic design companies in customer service before retiring with Livingston Graphics. She was an active member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Webb City.

In addition to her parents, Shirley was preceded in death by her husband of 64 years, James “Jim” Weber, who passed away on Nov. 25, 2020; three brothers; and a grandson, Gavin.

Survivors include her children, Debbie Ziegler and husband Kevin, Katy, Texas, Teresa Mai, Oronogo, Joseph Weber and friend Sue, Pittsburg, Kan., Becky Smith, Joplin, Brenda Weber, Centerton, Ark., and Jeffrey Weber and wife Phyllis, Fairhope, Ala.; 17 grandchildren; 28 great-grandchildren; and her brother, Dan Stroud, Greenville, Texas.

Memorial funeral Mass was celebrated Monday, June 20, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, with Father Francisco “Paco” Gordillo officiating. Inurnment was in Mount Hope Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Missouri Southern State University Nursing Program, in care of Parker Mortuary at 1502 S. Joplin St., Joplin, Mo. 64804.


Patrick Wilkins

Sept. 3, 1953 – June 15, 2022

Patrick Wilkins, age 68, of Jasper, passed away on Wednesday, June 15, surrounded by the comfort of his family. He was born on Sept. 3, 1953, to Theodore and Janie (Leatherwood) Wilkins.

Patrick was married on April 17, 1981, to Rhonda, and they were blessed with two wonderful boys. Throughout life, Rhonda was a long-time companion and friend to Patrick and the family. He was a major part the Wilkins Roofing Company until his retirement in 2012, a company his sons continue to operate today.

He enjoyed his career in roofing, but enjoyed many things beyond work. He was an avid arrowhead hunter, had a special interest in gardening, and loved his cows and his dog. Patrick’s family meant the world to him. He grew in his faith spiritually throughout his life, especially when outdoors with his family.

Patrick was preceded in death by his parents, Theodore and Janie Wilkins; a brother Joe Wilkins; and a niece, Lindsay Wilkins, daughter of Mike Wilkins. He is survived by his two sons, Seth (Stephani) Wilkins, Webb City, and Matt (Abby) Wilkins, Carl Junction; brothers Lee (Vicki), Asbury, Mike (Jill), Oronogo, and Tim (Sharon), Carl Junction; a sister DeLaine Clark; and grandchildren Roman, Hailey, Hayden, Harper and Justice.

A funeral service for Patrick was held Monday, June 20, at Simpson Funeral Home, with Mike Wilkins officiating. Graveside services were at Burkhart Cemetery in Racine.

Funeral arrangements are under the care and direction of Simpson Funeral Home.