Hayden Elbert Crawford, 91, of Vermilion, went home to be with his Lord and Savior Saturday, May 17, 2014, at New Life Hospice Residential Center in Lorain, following a brief illness. He was born January 24, 1923 in Stirrat, West Virginia. In 1950, Hayden moved to Michigan before moving to the Lorain County area in 1958. He made his home in West Salem for the the last three years.
Hayden proudly served in the United States Navy during World War II as a gunner mate aboard a mine sweeping vessel. He served in the European Theater and was part of the invasion of Normandy. Hayden also served in the Pacific Theater. He was employed as an electrician at Ford Motor Company in Lorain for 27 years, before retiring in 1987. Hayden was a member of Lorain Baptist Church in Lorain. He was a past Master of the Charleston Masonic Lodge 702, now known as the Black River Masonic Lodge, as well as a 32nd Degree Mason with the Valley of Cleveland Scottish Rite. In his spare time, he enjoyed fishing, hunting and was a man who was industrious, using his gifts as an electrician and carpenter to help others. Hayden loved to read, especially his Bible and enjoyed crossroad puzzles. His greatest joy was spending time with his children and grandchildren.
Survivors include his wife, Evelyn Kern; his son and his wife, Dennis R. and Sandy Crawford of Vermilion; his daughter-in-law, Marcia Crawford of Lorain; his grandchildren, Jennifer Kesterke, Dennis R. Crawford, Jr. Ricky Crawford and Hayden Gregory Crawford; six great-grandchildren; his brother, James Crawford of Florida; stepdaughters, Rosanna Strojeck, Dianna Beers.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 54 years, Virginia Lois Crawford on January 24, 2002; his son, Hayden "Franklin" Crawford on March 2, 2008; his brother, Elmer Forest "Buck" Crawford; his sisters, Jenny Crawford, Betty Bolen, Helen Schumate, Clair Jean Walker; and his parents, Jim Forest and Gertrude Mae Crawford (nee Acree).
Friends may call Wednesday, May 21, 2014, from 4 until 8 P.M., at the Hempel Funeral Home, 373 Cleveland Ave., Amherst. The Black River Masonic Lodge of Lorain will perform services at 7 P.M. Funeral services will be held Thursday, May 22, 2014, at 11 A.M., in the funeral home. The Reverend Dempsey Miller, Pastor of Lorain Baptist Church, will officiate. Burial will follow at Resthaven Memory Garden, Avon.
The family suggests that memorial contributions be made to New Life Hospice, 3500 Kolbe Road, Lorain, OH 44053, Lorain Baptist Church, 3640 Palm Ave., Lorain, OH 44055 or the Seidman Cancer Center, University Hospital, 11100 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44106.
Additional information and online register book are available at www.hempelfuneralhome.com