A memorial service for Ronald Arthur Stephens, 79, West Plains, Missouri, will be held from 5:00 until 7:00 p.m., Monday, November 20, 2023, in the Rose Chapel at Robertson-Drago Funeral Home.
Mr. Stephens passed away at 2:30 p.m., Saturday, November 11, 2023, at NHC HealthCare.
He was born November 11, 1944, at West Plains, Missouri, to James Arthur and Betty Sue Stephens. Mr. Stephens was a proud veteran, having served with the United States Navy, serving two tours in Vietnam with the Seabees. Ronald owned his first race car in high school and developed a love for racing; it was during this time he acquired the nickname “Heavy Duty” that lasted his entire life. He loved being outdoors, playing golf, camping, fishing and hunting. He enjoyed traveling and reading. Later in life he was a dedicated Teamster negotiator in Washington, D.C. Mr. Stephens was the type of person that would do anything for anyone. He also loved to have fun and could be quite ornery. Mr. Stephens was a member of the Masonic Lodge in Kansas City and had been a member of the Elks Lodge for many years.
He is survived by two sons, James Charles Stephens and Christopher Robert Stephens, both of Harrisonville, Missouri; three grandchildren, R.T. Stephens, West Plains, Haddie Sue and Lana Rose Stephens, of Harrisonville, Missouri; two brothers, Greg Stephens and wife, Renee and Terry Stephens and wife, Sharon, all of West Plains; two sisters, Karen Garner and husband, Bob and Jodie Haynes and husband, Donnie, all of West Plains; one aunt. Mary Jo McManus, West Plains; and many nieces and nephews.
His parents, one sister, Kim Baker and several aunts and uncles, preceded him in death.
A private burial will be at Stuart Union Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Stuart Union Cemetery, Shriners Hospitals for Children or 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.