Harley Jones

Harley Jones

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Harley Jones preferred both his coffee and his woman to be strong. He got what he wanted. One day, when he pointed out that his morning “joe” wasn’t strong enough, the woman to whom he was married for over six decades told him to make his own. And that became his habit, to rise a half hour earlier than Shirley and make strong coffee to share with his best friend, who was the love of his life, until he recently brewed his last cup.Harley Donley Jones, 87, died on July 8, 2016, at Sheridan Memorial Hospital in Sheridan, Wyoming.Harley dropped into this life on August 26, 1928, landing in Hot Springs, South Dakota. Little did his parents, Harley and Mildred Jones, know that this freefall from the stork would turn into a source of pride and adventure later in his life. His growing up years were shaped by his relationship with his two brothers and three sisters.If you met Harley when he was wearing a short sleeved shirt, you couldn’t help but notice the tattoos on both arms and his left hand, images in ink that told the story of what was important to him.On the back of his left hand, Harley sported seven letters that meant more to him than anything else: S-h-i-r-l-e-y. He said it helped him fend off other gals who “expressed an interest” because Shirley Murray, a fiery little redhead, was the one who made his heart throb. They met when he was nineteen and she was sixteen, married on December 19, 1951, and shared 64 wonderful years together.Harley was drafted in 1951 and served his country during the Korean War. That story can be found in the tattoos on the triceps of each arm. He was proud of his military service and grateful for his “brothers” in the 11th Airborne Division of the U.S. Army. Right to the end Harley loved to reminisce and share the stories represented by tattooed images of a parachute and a skydiving paratrooper.Most of the time, Harley had his feet planted squarely on the ground. He worked for the government from 1945 until his retirement in 1983. Harley and Shirley decided to make Sheridan their permanent home in 1992.Whether working at Edwards Air Force Base in California, running a mountain trail in Idaho, walking all the way across Sheridan to Walmart and back (always wearing his trademark maroon and black stocking cap), or pampering his treasured pickup truck, Harley remained a “man’s man” who said what he meant and meant what he said.Harley and Shirley had no children, but they had a big family—neighbors and friends who loved and were loved in return. One special friend was furry and had four feet. Harley and Shirley looked forward to frequent visits from Charlie, their good friends’ pooch who couldn’t wait to cross the street every day and express his affection with a cold nose and busy tail.Harley was preceded in death by his parents, brother Raleigh, and sisters Ruth and Virginia.He is survived by his wife Shirley, sister Hattie, and brother Stan.At Harley’s request, there will be no services. Interment of his ashes and a celebration of his life will take place next summer at Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, South Dakota.Kane Funeral Home has been entrusted with arrangements.

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At Harley’s request, there will be no services. Interment of his ashes and a celebration of his life will take place next summer at Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, South Dakota.


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