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BELLA VISTA, Ark. — Vernon "Whitey" L. Albright, 79, of Bella Vista, AR, went to be with his Heavenly Father on Dec. 26, 2016, at his home, surrounded by family.

He was born March 30, 1937, in Red Oak, IA, and married his wife of 58 years on April 18, 1958, in Rockport, MO.

He served his country as a signalman aboard the USS Tarawa from 1955 to 1958. He also worked for the Iowa Department of Transportation for 40 years and served as a volunteer in a number of capacities for numerous organizations, including the Benevolence Lodge in Iowa-AF & AM (member for 49 years), Little League baseball, Bella Vista Community Television, Crime Watch, Meals on Wheels, Helping Hands, and Bella Vista Recycling Center. He served as elder and Sunday school teacher at First Christian Church in Mason City, IA, and was later a member of First Christian Church in Bentonville, AR.

His kind and gentle heart touched countless people during his lifetime in his roles in the Navy, church member, husband, father, uncle, grandfather and friend.

Known for his passion of sports, Vern eagerly cheered on the St. Louis Cardinals, Iowa Hawkeyes and Arkansas Razorbacks. He was also inducted into the River City Iowa Softball Hall of Fame.

He is preceded in death by parents Melvin and Monda, brothers Irven and Charles, and sister Norma Jean.

Vern is survived by his wife, Charlene (Gresham) Albright, Bella Vista, AR; brother, Harry Albright (Merlene), Cherokee, IA; sister, Mary Dolph (Robert – deceased), Cherokee, IA; sons, Larry Albright (Deb), Kensett, IA, and Thomas Albright (Susan), Bentonville, AR; daughter, Laura Rader (Andrew), Haiti; grandchildren; Jamie Malek (Greg), Mason City, IA, Jillian Harris, Bentonville, AR, Matthew Albright, MN, Robert Gomez, Mason City, IA, Adam Albright (Carmela), Crossett, AR, and Ashley Zebley (Bryan), Rogers, AR; great-grandchildren, Ethan, Kellar, Sophie and Charlie Malek and Addison and Madilyn Zebley; and several nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will take place at 10 a.m. on Feb. 15, 2017, at First Christian Church in Bentonville, AR. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the First Christian Church of Bentonville or a charity of your choice.

Arrangements are under the care of Rollins Funeral Home of Rogers, AR. www.rollinsfuneral.com.

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