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Ernest's Story

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Gene Blair was born in 1923 in Maryville, Tennessee. He passed away peacefully surrounded by his children on October 4, 2017 at the age of 93 after a brief illness. Gene joined the Navy in 1940 and was stationed at Long Beach, California. In 1942, he was transferred to Norman to help construct the naval base. While working on the construction, he met Fran Earls whom he married in 1944. Shortly after his marriage, he was shipped out to the Philippine islands. After returning, Gene and Fran remained in Norman where they raised their four children. They were happily married for 68 years until her death in 2012.
Gene worked at Landsaw's Furniture Company for 25 years where he learned all aspects of the furniture business from his mentor Bob Landsaw Sr. After Landsaw Sr's death, he felt well qualified to strike out on his own. He opened Blair Home Furnishings on Main Street in Norman in 1973. It proved to be a successful endeavor until his retirement in 1993 at which time he sold the store to his son, Scott.
After retiring, Fran and Gene enjoyed traveling but his real passion was for community service. Gene was active in First Christian Church from 1943 until his death. Through his affiliation with First Christian Church, he was very active in fund raising efforts for Health for Friends and supporting youth mission trips. He delivered Meals on Wheels for 25 years up until his 80's. He was also involved with Veteran's Corner, Inc. and Food and Shelter for Friends.
He is survived by his four children Nancy Thompson and husband Bob, Susan Blair, Scott Blair and wife Debbie, Jana Knott and husband Tom all of Norman, 5 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren.
A celebration of his life will be held on Monday October 9th at 10:00 am at First Christian Church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Gene's memory to First Christian Church 220 S. Webster Norman. OK 73069.
Gene will be greatly missed by all who knew him and will always be remembered for his love and generosity toward his community and family.
Published on October 5, 2017
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