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RUSSELL GILBERT WIGGINS

Russell Gilbert Wiggins, 95, Ottawa, Kan., died Oct. 18, 2013, at Village West Retirement Village, Ottawa, Kan.

A visitation was set for 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, at Lamb Roberts Funeral Home in Ottawa. The funeral service was to follow at 10 a.m. Wednesday. Burial was planned for Highland Cemetery, Ottawa.

He was born Oct. 15, 1918, in Lancaster, Penn., the son of Ross Black Wiggins and Evelyn May (Phillips) Wiggins.

He grew up in Lancaster, Penn., and moved to Ottawa in 1945 after serving in the U.S. Army for 4 1/2 years.

He began serving at Camp Wheeler in Macon, Ga. He was then sent to Washington, D.C., as a Military Policeman in the 708th MP Battalion Company C in 1941. During his stay in Fort Myer, Va., next to Arlington Cemetery, he served as an honorary guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and did funeral services for veterans and generals and other affairs in Arlington Cemetery. He later was a guard at the White House, charged to protect the president of the United States during World War II. Russell also had guard duty for Gen. George Marshal at his home at Fort Myer. Later, at the closing years of the war, he transported prisoners Of war to various places across the U.S., even having brought prisoners to Ottawa. He was honorably discharged at Fort Dix, N.J.

He was awarded the American Service Medal and Good Conduct Medal.

Russell was a commercial contracted electrician for the Wiggins Electric Company for 25 years. Then he owned the company along with Robert Wiggins for 15 years. They conducted business across the state, including at Ransom Memorial Hospital, Ottawa Herald, Ottawa Truck, King Radio, Duke, Ottawa schools and many other schools and banks around the state. He retired in 1982.

He was united in marriage to Frances Eva Coltrane Dec. 4, 1941, in Washington, D.C., where she worked for the Navy Department. They later divorced.

He was a longtime member of the Assembly of God church, serving as a Deacon for many years, Sunday school superintendent, teacher and on the building committee of the church at 13th and Mulberry streets.

He was preceded in death by his parents; five brothers, Ross E., Meryle B., Bertram, Jack and Jay; one infant brother; a daughter, Betty Louise (Wiggins) Melroy; and a granddaughter, Wendy Wiggins.

Survivors include two daughters, Carolyn and husband, Jay Treadway, Faribault, Minn., Marilyn and husband, Bruce Charlton, Prairie Village, Kan.; two sons, Russell Jr. and wife, Marilyn Wiggins, Lawrence, Kan., Wayne and wife, Sharee Wiggins, Overland Park, Kan.; five grandchildren, Debra and husband, Loren Evans, Ottawa, Kristen and husband, Bob Koch, Faribault, Minn., Joshua Sigmund and wife, Kelsey, Spearville, Kan.; and Jarod Sigmund and fiancée, Emma Rieper, Overland Park, Kan.; and 10 great-grandchildren.

He was a 66-year member of Local 226 I.B.E.W. Topeka, Kan., and an active member of the Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce.

The family suggests memorial contributions be made to Ransom Memorial Hospital Auxiliary through Lamb-Roberts Funeral Home, P.O. Box 14, Ottawa KS 66067.

Condolences may be sent to the family through www.lamb-roberts.com

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