As of Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Cities without a state are in Missouri 


Jim Collard

Sept. 21, 1942 – April 18, 2023

James “Jim” F. Collard, a longtime resident of the Oronogo area, passed away on Tuesday, April 18, at the University of Kansas Medical Center to be with the Lord and his good friend Butch Crow.

Jim was born on Sept. 21, 1942, in Stella, to Arthur E. and Margaret Jean Collard. He was married to Karen S. Pope on Sept. 16, 1966, and were married for 56 years. They loved each other through thick and thin. They never left each other’s side.

Jim worked for Vickers for 20 years until it closed. He then started employment at the Webb City School District on May 13, 1991, and retired on June 30, 2004. He enjoyed farming and raising cattle, especially Polled Herefords on the land Jim and Karen eventually named Boulder View Farms (because of the rocks).

He enjoyed quail hunting and fishing his entire life until he was unable. He enjoyed all of his family but especially the grandkids. He went to their sporting events and cattle/pig shows. He was involved in FFA, receiving his State & American Farm Degree. He was a member of Masonic Lodge No. 471 of Oronogo. Jim was also a member of the First Baptist Church of Oronogo.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents Art and Margaret Collard; a brother Randy Collard; father and mother-in-law Bill and Maxine Pope, respectively; and one great-nephew, Hutch Flippo. 

He is survived by his wife, Karen Collard; two sons, James Clayton Collard and wife Janelle, and Douglas Collard and his wife Joy; six grandchildren Ashliegh (Nick) Norbury; Morgan, Wyatt, Emily, Brooke, and Allison Collard; a great-grandson, Wiley Norbury; a brother, David Collard and wife Nancy; an uncle, Fred Schnider; and several nephews, nieces and cousins.

A visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, April 21, 2023, at Simpson Funeral Home. Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, April 22, 2023, at First Baptist Church in Oronogo, with Jerry Mayfield presiding. Internment will be in Pleasant Hill Cemetery. Pallbearers will be Wyatt, Houston, Bronson, Matt, Justin and Adam Collard. Honorary pallbearers will be Jack, William and David Flippo, along with Joe, Mike and John D Collard.

Memorial contributions may be made to Children’s Mercy in Kansas City, in care of the funeral home.


Robert Gebauer

Jan. 22, 1939 – April 14, 2023

Robert Ray Gebauer, born Jan. 22, 1939, in Sheldon Iowa, passed away Friday, April 14. He was the son of John and Arlene Gebauer.

Robert’s had five brothers: John, Gerry, and Harold have already passed; James and Don are still living. Robert worked to keep everyone connected through the years.

Robert married Judith I. Gentry in 1957, and they had four children, Robert Junior and Lee Allen have already passed, and Tim and Pam are still living.

He started working at the age of 6, working hard all of his life to support and help his family, extended family, and friends.

Robert served 10 years in the Air Force, from 1956 to 1966, serving in Oklahoma City, Okla., Kotzebue, Alaska, Driftwood Bay Alaska, San Antonio, Texas, Richards Gebauer Airforce Base, Belton Mo., and other posts.

Settling in Kansas City after his time in the service, he owned his own business for decades and often took work on the side to provide extra income. He loved to work with his hands on his projects as well as for others.

He left the world a better place because he was here.

Memorial donations may be made to Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.

Arrangements were under the direction of Simpson Funeral Home.



Travis Gratton

July 15, 1982 – April 13, 2023

Lovingly written by Travis’ family…

Travis was born in Gilroy, Calif., on July 15, 1982, to David Lee Gratton and Shari Altona McGlaughlin. In 1986, David was awarded full custody of Travis.

In 1988, David married, Carrie Lynn Haeg. Carrie took Travis in her arms and raised him as her own son. Growing up, Travis attended Grace Assembly Church with his family, his grandma, aunts and uncles. At the age of 14, he preached and sang at a few services for Grace Assembly. Travis enjoyed Taekwondo, baseball, football and music. When he got to his adult years, he took a liking to guitar, banjo, drums, singing and video games with his brothers and friends. He loved to fish and go boating.

Travis had a big heart, he would give his shirt off his back to help someone in need. He was very protective of his mom, Carrie Gratton. Travis worked for Jack Henry for 13 years as an ICORE Program Analyst. He was well liked by his co-workers.

On May 4, 2022 he married, Elizabeth B. Mayfield, and she survives. Additional survivors include, three stepchildren, Veda Crane, Annica Crane, and Violet Snowdowden; his parents, David and Carrie Gratton, Webb City; two brothers, Nicholas Gratton and wife Tiffany, Webb City, and Kenneth Gratton and wife Lauren, Webb City; paternal grandparent, Martha Gratton, Oronogo; and several nieces, nephews, aunts and uncles.

Travis was preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, Edward L. Gratton; uncles, Gary Fox, Scott Murray, and aunt, Judy Gratton.

Funeral services have been scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, April 21, 2023, at the Mason-Woodard Mortuary. Burial will follow at Oronogo Cemetery. The family will receive friends during a time of visitation at 1 p.m. Friday at the funeral home.


Helen Merz

May 26, 1925 – April 2, 2023

Mrs. Helen Marie (Hensley) Merz, 97, of San Leon, Texas, formerly of Webb City, a retired registered nurse, departed this life peacefully on Sunday evening, April 2, in the comfort of her home.

Graveside services were held Wednesday, April 12, in Carterville Cemetery. Arrangements were under the direction of Hedge-Lewis-Goodwin Funeral Home.


Ruby Petty

May 19, 1946 – April 12, 2023


Ruby Petty, 76, of Webb City, passed away on Wednesday, April 12, in her home.

Ruby was born on May 19, 1946, to Sylvester and Daisy Cockrell in Waurika, Okla. After graduating from Comanche High School in 1964, she went on to study Medical Laboratory Science at Cameron University in Lawton, Okla.

She married Ronnie Smith on Dec. 28, 1964, going on to have two sons, Wade and Eric. Ruby graduated from Cameron University in 1968 and pursued a career in the medical field as a Laboratory Technician. Ronnie and Ruby divorced in 1977.

She married Floyd (Buck) Petty in 1978, and they were united until Buck passed away in 2006 after a battle with cancer. Ruby and Buck spent many weeks at the lake each year with their family and were lifelong fans of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Ruby was preceded in death by her parents, Sylvester and Daisy; her stepfather, Walter; her husband, Buck; and her two brothers, Roy and Sam. She is survived by her children, Wade Smith and his wife, Amy, of Lisle, Ill., Bryon Petty of Joplin, and Eric Smith and his wife, Mindy, of Carl Junction; five grandsons, Trey, Coltyn, Christian, Trenton, and Bennet; one granddaughter, Grayson; two sisters-in-law, Patty Reeder and husband, David, Webb City, and Karen Ellison and husband, Larry, Lakehills, Texas.

Memorial donations may be made to the American Cancer Society. There will be a graveside service at 10 a.m. on May 19, 2023, at Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Simpson Funeral Home.