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Branson Everett Hiatt, age 99, ran out of stories to tell on January 16, 2024. He was born May 14, 1924, in Kewanna, Indiana, to Paul and Sarah (McConaghey) Hiatt. He attended school in Greene Township and graduated from North Liberty High School in 1942. Branson was a US Army veteran of World War II and later served in the US Navy Reserve. In 1946, he was discharged from the Army, married the love of his life, Mary Lou Widup, and settled in Walkerton, where he lived for the last 77 years.
Branson worked in the Oliver and Studebaker factories for a while but made his career selling insurance and building and managing real estate in Walkerton. After he retired, he and Mary Lou travelled extensively. He was a member of the American Legion and the Masonic Lodge for over 75 years, as well as the Lions Club and the Walkerton Area Historical Society. Branson enjoyed making wooden artwork and ornaments and gave thousands of pieces away. He was an avid golfer and played as recently as 2 months ago.
Branson was preceded in death by his wife and parents, brothers Charles Robert “Bob” Hiatt and James Milton “Jim” Hiatt, sister Betty Louise Anderson, and grandsons Stephen Sherland and David Sherland. He is survived by his children, Marilyn (Charles) Sherland of Walkerton, Dr. William (LaVerne) Hiatt of Hendersonville, NC, and Nancy (John) Turner of Walkerton, as well as 5 grandchildren, 7 great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Friends may visit with the family from 2:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M. on Sunday, January 21st, in the Hanley and Sons Funeral Home-Walkerton Chapel, 1216 Roosevelt Road, with a Masonic Service at 5:30 P.M. conducted by the North Liberty Masonic Lodge #266. There will be a funeral service at 11:00 A.M. on Monday, January 22nd, at the Walkerton Community Church, 1000 Georgia Street, with an hour visitation prior to service. He will be laid to rest next to his wife in the Woodlawn Cemetery of Walkerton with full Military Honors provided by American Legion Post 189 and the United States Army. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Walkerton Area Historical Society, 302 Roosevelt Road, Walkerton, IN 46574.
The Hanley and Sons Funeral Home “Walkerton Chapel” and Cremation Service are handling arrangements and extends our deepest sympathy and heartfelt prayers to the Hiatt family and friends. To leave an online condolence or to share a memory, please visit http://www.hanleyandsonsfuneralhomes.com