MANCHESTER – Robert Jewell Purdy Sr., of Manchester, died Tuesday, March 18, 2014, at the Elliot Hospital after a brief illness. He was born on March 9, 1921, in Concord, the son of Captain Frank Alda Purdy, USMMS and Sara (Jewell) Tucker. He grew up in Concord, was educated in the Capital City School System and was a graduate of Concord High School Class of 1938.
Following his graduation, Bob enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps and during World War II served with the 6th Marine Division in the Pacific Theater where his combat unit landed at the following islands: Guadalcanal, Tulagi, Ulithi, Guam, Okinawa and finally was with the very first unit to land on the main island of Japan on Aug. 30, 1945, three full days before the Japanese signed the instrument of surrender aboard the USS Missouri on Sept. 2, 1945. After being recalled to active duty in 1950, he served with the 2nd Marine Division during the Korean Conflict. After leaving active duty service with the United States Marine Corps, he joined the U.S. Air Force as a member of the New Hampshire Air National Guard until he retired after more than 24 years of service to his country.
Bob was employed as a transportation driver and dispatcher for the Gulf Oil Corporation for over 30 years. He was a member of Henry J. Sweeney Post #2, the VFW and the DAV. He was also a member of the 6th Marine Division Association, the Horace Chase Masonic Lodge of Penacook and the Bektash Shrine Temple of Concord.
He was married in 1940 to the former Florence Pouliot and will be remembered as a loving husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather.
Members of his family include his wife of 74 years, Florence A. Purdy of Manchester; his sons, Robert J. Purdy Jr. and his wife, Mai Linh, of Fountain Valley, Calif. and Frank D. Purdy and Barbara of Hooksett; his six grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and his half-brother, David Leonard of Rhode Island.
Visitation will be Sunday, March 23, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the McHugh Funeral Home, 283 Hanover St., corner of Beech St., in Manchester.
A Committal Service will be held Monday, March 24, at 11 a.m. in the NH State Veterans Cemetery Chapel.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Bob’s name to the Shriners Hospitals, 15 Blossom St., Boston, MA 02114.