Eldon E. Parker

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By The Staff

Eldon E. Parker, 84, of Fanning Springs, died Wednesday, June 4, 2008. He passed away peacefully in the presence of his family after a prolonged battle against Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

He was born Feb. 26, 1924 in Sturgis, Mich, one of four children of the late Ed and Sarah Parker.

On Nov. 24, 1946, he and Janet Sumney were married in Thomasville, Ga. They were married for nearly 62 years.

In 1950, he and his wife settled down in St. Petersburg to raise a family and run his business, Parker Enterprises. He founded the Parker's Radiator Service, growing it from a one-man shop to the largest commercial fleet repair facility on Florida's Suncoast.

After many successful years in the automotive radiator business, his interest in campers led him to open the Florida-Georgia franchise of Turtle Top Campers, a van conversion operation. In 1973, the Parkers retired to Western North Carolina where he was a volunteer emergency room EMT and volunteer fireman. The Parkers traveled with a gospel singing group before returning to Florida in 1985.

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