Darrell Richard (Dick) Clearwater, 97, beloved husband of Gwendolene (Shoulders) Clearwater of Plainfield went home to be with his Lord and Savior on January 16, 2021. Born on January 7, 1924 in Indianapolis, Indiana, he was the son of the late Darrell and Martha (Ledig) Clearwater. He grew up in Indianapolis and graduated from Shortridge High School in 1940 at the age of 16. He then began his college studies at Purdue University. Before finishing college, he joined the Army Air Corp/Air Force and served in the South Pacific during WWII. He was a member of the 3rd Photo Reconnaissance Squadron which participated in the 2 historic missions over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan in August 1945.
After the war, he completed his college career earning a degree in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University where he finished with Honors. He began a career at American Art and Clay in Speedway, Indiana where he met the love of his life, a young, hard-working girl named, Gwendolene. They married shortly thereafter, on his birthday, January 7, 1950. Their military family life began with multiple moves throughout the world. While in the Air Force Reserves, he was recalled to Active Duty for the Korean Conflict. Later, many of their travels brought them from Georgia to Texas, Germany, California, Greenland, and New York. While in Newburgh, New York, he completed his Master's Degree from Syracuse University. During their years of travel, he made sure his children had outdoor memories that he documented and preserved for enjoying slideshows.
He remained in the Air Force throughout the Vietnam War, then completed his 26-year military career, completing his last assignment as Lt. Colonel serving at the Pentagon. After retiring, Dick taught Business courses at the local college as well as served in the local county government while running a successful business.
He and Gwen then relocated back to their home state of Indiana. He began to teach part-time at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University . He also taught Sunday school at Plainfield Baptist Church for over 30 years, just retiring a year ago. He was a dedicated teacher and loved to study. He also enjoyed watching football, the Miami Dolphins as well as anyone else who graduated from Purdue University. He was a wonderful cook and grill master, owning over 5 different types of grill. He even compiled and bound his own cookbook so he could give his children and grandchildren his favorite recipes, a wonderful treasure! He had a mischievous sense of humor and even nicknamed many of his grandchildren with special names.
His love for animals and birds was evident as he had several dogs during his lifetime as well as cats. The birds on Claren Drive never went hungry. He was an avid reader and would sometimes finish a book in a day. He loved the Biblical teachings of Dr. David Jeremiah and the music of the Bill Gaither Trio and any patriotic songs.
He was a generous supporter of many Christian ministries. In his later years, he enjoyed weekly grocery trips to Meijer with Gwen as well as putting in their yearly vegetable garden.
In addition to his wife of 71 years, Dick is survived by his daughter Debbie Smith and husband, Greg, daughter Pam Dodson and husband, John, son Rick Clearwater and wife, Debbie, son Dave Clearwater and wife, Patti, 12 Grandchildren and 18 Great-Grandchildren. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Gulfside Hospice, 6117 Trouble Creek Rd. New Port Richey, FL 34653 or Disabled American Veterans.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday January 23, 2021 at 12 noon in Hall-Baker Funeral Home, Plainfield with Pastor Jared Skinner officiating. Burial with Military Honors will take place in Maple Hill Cemetery, Plainfield. Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until services in the funeral home. Please visit www.bakerfuneralservice.com to leave the Clearwater Family a condolence.
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