February 29, 1940–December 7, 2020Ted Russel Tankersley, age 80, Joplin, passed away Monday, December 7, 2020 at home surrounded by family.
Ted was born February 29, 1940 in Rolla, Missouri to the late Perry Tankersley and Alma Dereatha (Devore) Tankersley and had lived in the Joplin area the majority of his life.
Ted graduated from Rolla High School in 1958. Following graduation, Ted attended Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy in Rolla, Missouri. It was there that he received his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. Ted worked for the City of Joplin as the Neighborhood Building Improvement and Supervisor for over 31 years before retiring in 2000.
Ted’s father worked as a train conductor and it was this that sparked Ted’s his interest in model trains at an early age. Ted had a passion for collecting and building model trains, something that he loved to share with his children and grandchildren. His collection had taken over the basement and he worked on them up until he could no longer. Ted was an avid Kansas City Chiefs fan; enjoyed traveling the country with his wife and friends and loved to celebrate the fourth of July. He was a member of the Rolla Lodge #213, A.F. & A.M.; the Joplin Shrine Club and the Oriental Band; and Abou Ben Adhem Shrine Temple, Springfield. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him.
Ted married Patricia Ann Stephenson on July 4, 1963 in Joplin, Missouri. Together they shared 57 wonderful years. She survives at the home.
In addition to his parents, Ted was preceded in death by his siblings, Deanie McGregor, Dick Tankersley and Donn Tankersley.
Additional survivors include his daughter, Christy Richardson and husband, Randy; son, Craig Tankersley and wife, Amber; grandchildren, Russel Richardson and wife, Sierra, Carter Richardson, Coralyn Richardson, Parker Tankersley, Samantha Tankersley, great grandchild Rhett, and one more on the way; together with many more extended family and friends.
Graveside services with Masonic Rites are planned for Friday at 2:00 p.m. at Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery with Pastor Bob Simon officiating.
Out of extreme love and concern and due to the current COVID crisis, the family asks that those attending Friday’s service please practice social distancing and wear a mask
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Four States or the Shriners Children’s Hospital, St. Louis, Missouri, both in care of Parker Mortuary.