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Benny R. Hillard SR

January 9, 1938 ~ November 12, 2021 (age 83)


   Much loved Benny R. Hillard SR, age 83, of East Hickory, PA, died on Friday, November 12, 2021 at UPMC Northwest in Seneca, PA.  He was born January 9, 1938 in Endeavor, PA, son of the late Orion H. and Ethel L. (Davidson) Hillard.    

   On August 15, 1959 he married Connie K. (Custer) Hillard who survives in East Hickory. Benny served with the US Navy and proudly served on the USS Soley Destroyer (DD 707).  He retired in 2003 from National Forge in Irvine where he worked as a Quality Assurance Technician.   He was an avid Steeler, Pirates, and Nascar Fan, and also enjoyed playing golf, hunting, fishing, and nature in general in the area including bird watching. Benny was also a member of the Amvets Post #113 of Tionesta.   

   Surviving are two sons, Benny R. Hillard JR and his wife Cathy E. of Tionesta, PA;  James W. Hillard of Clarion, PA. and Theresa A. Hillard of Connecticut.  Two daughters, Denise K. Mudryk and her husband Michael of East Hickory; LuAnn S. Gold and her husband Barry L. of Pittsburgh, PA. 

   Six grandsons, Eric M. Gold and his wife Elizabeth of Glassport, PA; Ty G. Hillard and his wife Abby of Warren, PA; Michael O. Hillard and his wife Aimee, also of Warren; Colyn R. Hillard and his wife Amanda of Tionesta; Nicholas T. Hillard, also of Tionesta; Adam Leviness and his wife Ashley of Oil City, PA.

   Five granddaughters, Kelli R. Gold of Pittsburgh; Kandra D. Karg and her husband Jordan, also of Pittsburgh; Jaime Hillard and her fiancé Kiefer Mansfield of Rouseville, PA; Jewel A. Hillard and her fiancé Jessica Nicoletti of Clarion, PA; Tifinie LaComb and her husband Kevin of Ohio.

   Fourteen great-grandchildren.  One brother, David Hillard and his wife Lorraine of Mercer, PA.  One sister, Violet Buzard and her husband Richard of Tionesta.  Many nieces and nephews. 

   There will be no public visitation, all services held will be private.  Arrangements are under the direction of the Norman J. Wimer Funeral Home of Tionesta.  Messages of sympathy may be left at www.wimerfuneralhome.com  

   Memorial contributions can be sent to the Tin Can Sailors Fund Inc. PO Box 100 Somerset, MA 02726.  Be sure to include in the mailing  “In Memory of Benny R. Hillard SR, USS Soley PO Box 558 East Hickory, PA 16321”.  Message from TCS Fund…“Our vision is that many future generations will be able to board well-maintained destroyer museum ships, hear the stories, and experience the courage of the 20th century United States Sailors.  You donation to our grant program will help keep their legacy alive.”    

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