Harry Lee Blackwell, 78, of Naylor passed away December 25, 2020 at Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center.
Harry was born June 4, 1942 to Jim and Floy Turner Blackwell in Doniphan, MO. Harry joined the Missouri National Guard just before graduating from Naylor High School in 1960. He married his wife of 59 years, Vivian VanDover in Naylor during the summer of 1961.
After attending Arkansas State University, Harry returned to Poplar Bluff and began his first job in the car business at Bill Childress Chevrolet. Eight years later, Harry and Roger Baldwin opened their first business, Blackwell Baldwin Oldsmobile Cadillac, in Poplar Bluff. Later in his career, along with his brother and two daughters, Harry started the Harry Blackwell family of dealerships in Dexter and Malden.
Harry enjoyed being on his farm raising both angus cattle and breeding barrel horses. He and Vivian were listed for several decades as being in the Top 10 All-Time Breeders in the Barrel Horse Racing Industry. He truly enjoyed watching a “good barrel race” and his family ride the horses he bred and raised.
Throughout the years, Harry has served terms on the General Motors Presidential Advisory Board, the Highway 67 Coalition, was a former President of Poplar Bluff Industries and was voted Co-Citizen of the year in 2000. Harry took great pride in bringing several essential businesses to the Poplar Bluff area. Harry also loved selflessly serving his community by contributing to various local charities. He especially enjoyed the annual toy & coat drive at Mt. Calvary Powerhouse Church and the community outreach at First United Methodist Church of Poplar Bluff, where Harry was a longtime member and served as usher.
In addition to Vivian, Harry is survived by two daughters, Amanda Clayman and Lori (Troy) Amoss; a brother, Rob (Vicki) Blackwell; four grandchildren, Anna Cate (Kevin) Nash, Brock Hunt, and Shay and Trell Amoss; and several nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Harry is preceded in death by his brother & sister-in-law, Jimmy & Darlene Blackwell.
Harry has asked that donations be made to the United Cancer Assistance Network (UCAN) of Poplar Bluff, MO to provide hope for other families experiencing this life altering diagnosis. UCAN 1899 N. Westwood Blvd Suite C PMB 172, Poplar Bluff, Mo, 63901.
Willow Ridge Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of arrangements.
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