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Harry Leroy Appel

Graveside services for Harry Leroy Appel, 90, West Plains, Missouri, will be held at 10:00 a.m., Thursday, December 29, 2022, at Gospel Hill Cemetery, under the direction of Robertson-Drago Funeral Home.


Mr. Appel passed away at 9:25 p.m., Sunday, December 25, 2022, at West Vue Nursing Center.


He was born March 1, 1932, in Ellis County, Oklahoma, to Emanuel Appel and Martha Renner Appel.  Harry attended school in Bishop and Shattuck, Oklahoma.  On December 23, 1950, he was married to Carole Litchfield in Higgins, Texas.  Harry joined the United States Navy as a young man.  He served on the USS Bon Homme Richard, USS Coral Sea, USS St. Paul and the USS Tortuga.  Ships on which he served were deployed to Korea twice during the Korean War and four times to Vietnam during the Vietnam War.  He also trained recruits at San Diego Naval Base and Great Lakes Naval Base in Illinois.  Mr. Appel retired after 20 years of service, having reached the rank of Lieutenant.  Harry was very proud of the years he spent in the Navy.  After retirement, Harry and Carole moved to a farm near Marshall, Arkansas.  Together they raised cattle for 40 years and planted huge gardens.  Harry also read electric meters and programmed voting machines for Searcy County.  In 2013, they moved to West Plains to be close to their daughter and family.  Harry enjoyed woodworking and created many pieces of furniture for family and friends.


He is survived by his wife of 72 years, Carole; daughter, Linda Hobbs and husband, Danny, West Plains; daughter-in-law, Laverne Appel Weems, Springdale, Arkansas; four grandchildren, Bethany (James) Kunz, Jason (Andrea) Appel, Brianne Hobbs and Travis (Ashley) Appel; nine great-grandchildren, Griffin, Garrett, Maya, Conner, Owen, Reece, Evan, Jacob and Avie; his siblings, Margaret Baker, Canyon, Texas, Ruth Sutherland, Choctaw, Oklahoma, Darlene (Ron) Stricker, Phoenix, Arizona and Larry (Judy) Appel, Dumas, Texas; and several nieces and nephews.


His parents, one son, Tom Appel and one brother, Jim Appel, preceded him in death.


Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital and may be left at or mailed to Robertson-Drago Funeral Home, 211 West Main, West Plains, MO  65775. Online condolences may be expressed at