Billy Joe Hutton, 83, of Kennett, Mo., died Sunday, Jan. 22, 2006, at the Senath Nursing Center in Senath. Born at Manila he was the son of the late William Joseph and Mary Jewell Wright Hutton. He was valedictorian of the 1940 graduating class of Manila High School and later received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering form the University of Arkansas. He was a U.S. Army veteran of World War II. He served in the 329th Army Air Force Base Unit as an aerial gunner on a B-24 Liberator. He received many decorations and citations. His service included battles in the Northern Solomans, Central Pacific, Bismarck Archipelago, New Guinea, the Eastern Mandates and Western Pacific. He received the U.S. Air Medal with one Silver Oak Leaf Cluster and three Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters. He also received the Distinguished Unit Badge with one Silver Service Star and one Bronze Service Star. Mr. Hutton was a retired farmer and had been a resident of Kennett for the past 40 years. He was a longtime member of the First United Methodist Church in Manila and had also attended the First United Methodist Church in Kennett.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a son, Thomas Joey Hutton, in 1998, and a brother, Vaughn T. Hutton.
Survivors include his wife, Laura Meacham Hutton, of the home; three sons, Vaughn Wright Hutton of Marion, James Randolph Hutton of Jonesboro, and William Mark Hutton of Blytheville; six grandchildren, Jennifer Marie Hutton, Joshua Mark Hutton, Morgan Marie Hutton, Mollie Samantha Hutton, Katie Melinda Hutton and Nathan Andrew Hutton; and a sister-in-law, Loraine Hutton of Manila.
The funeral was held at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the First United Methodist Church in Manila with Rev. Gary Carter and Rev. Stephen Waggoner officiating. Burial was in the Manila Cemetery under the direction of Howard Funeral Service of Manila.
Pallbearers were Tommy Towles, Bobby Nowlin, Toby Bunch, Glenn Kitchens, R.A. Davidson and Joshua Hutton.
Friends may sign the online guest register at www.howardfuneralservice.com