Funeral services for Wayne Earl Peat, 71, will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 31, 2012, with military and firefighter honors, at the First Baptist Church in Gainesville with the Rev. Mike Dillin officiating. Mr. Peat died Monday, March 26, at his home in Zanoni with his family around him.
He was born July 6, 1940, in Auburn, Calif., the son of Robert and Eleanor Peat.
He served in the Army, then in the National Guard and then in the Air Force. While he was based at McClellan Air Force Base near Sacramento, he met Nancy Carnelison, an Ozarks native who was working in the commanding officer’s office. They were married July 5, 1967, in Sparks, Nev.
In 1970 they came to the Ozarks for an extended vacation so that Mr. Peat could meet his wife’s family and see the countryside. He floated, fished and camped on area rivers with his new family members and became so fond of the area that they ended up staying. He helped with the construction of Edwards Mill at what is now College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, completing much of the rockwork there. After the mill was completed, he stayed on and eventually became manager and miller at the mill, a job he held for nearly 10 years.
The Peats then moved back to California, where Mr. Peat worked as a sign installer, repairman and handyman for a real estate company. In 1994, they moved to Ozark County and became active in the Caney Mountain Volunteer Fire Department. He had also been active in the volunteer fire departments in Hollister and in Auburn, Calif.
Survivors include his wife, of the home in Zanoni; three children, Bendy Peat of Auburn, Calif., Robert Peat Sr. and wife Tammy, and Sheila Mason and husband John, all of Zanoni; nine grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents, grandparents, one child, and a grandson, Terry Peat.
Following the funeral service, a procession of family, friends and fire department vehicles will travel to the Caney Mountain VFD fire station on County Road 103, where a lunch will be served to everyone attending. Burial in Ball Cemetery, near Dora, will occur later.
Clinkingbeard Funeral Home, directors.