Donnie Ray Croom
Donnie Ray Croom has passed into our eternal world, Feb. 4, 2015, at the age of 76. He died at home in Murfreesboro, Tenn., while being cared for by loved ones. He was born Sept. 15, 1938, in Manila, Ark. He was a resident there until after his graduation from Manila High School in 1956, serving as lifeguard at the Manila pool until his enlistment into the United States Naval Branch of the military, Sept. 1, 1959, and served 23 years active duty before he retired from service to our country. He was an avionics electronics engineer serving many times on aircraft carriers around the world repairing helicopters and aircraft used to protect and defend our country; along with two terms in Vietnam, search and rescue. There wasn't anything the man couldn't fix and it gave him great joy to help people with his time, fixing things for others.
He was preceded in death by his father and mother, R.A. And Dorthy Croom, one younger brother, Ronnie P. Croom, and nephew Cade Allen Christie, son of Ginger Croom Christie, all of Manila.
He is survived by four children, Timothy Noal Croom of Olivebranch, Miss., Sammie Dawn Finley of Osceola, Cindy Rene Raybon of Murfreesboro, Tenn., and Demetra Dianne Rayborn of Conway; 10 grandchildren, three belonging to Tim N. Croom; Teresa Dawn Carlin, (husband Eddie), two great-grandchildren, Haleigh Elicia and Michael Lawrence of Southhaven, Miss.; Timi Alice Nicole Irvin, (husband Ryan), of Memphis, Tenn.; Stephanie Abbagail Waldrop, (husband Jake), and two great-grandchildren Mac Noal and Aubree Grace born to Abbagail and Jake Waldrop, all of Memphis, Tenn.; three grandchildren of Sammie D. Finley, Brandi R. Jackson, (husband Matt) and great-grandson Matthew Avery Jackson of Manila, Jarred Timothy Bishop of Las Vegas, Nev.; Nora Dawn Freeman and great-grandchildren, Jimmy D. (Jay) Freeman, Jerra Josette Freeman, and Finley Grace Freeman of Batesville; Cindy R. Raybon (husband Walter), two grandchildren Dustin Heath
Bennett of Manila, Benni Don Bennett (wife Nicole) and great-grandsons Bryson Gale, Colton Anthony, and Logan John, all of Marietta, Calif.; Demetra D. Rayborn, two grandchildren, Jackie Ray Jones of Murfreesboro, Tenn., Callie Nicole (husband Kyle), and great-granddaughter Kylie Jean, all of Conway.
Memorial service will be held at the Faith Funeral Service in Manila at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 21.