Decorated Marine WWII Veteran Laid to Rest in Texas


Sidney Clifford Key was a man with a deep love of his country, his church and his family.

The World War II veteran was remembered by loved ones Monday at the First United Methodist Church and was buried with full military honors.

Key died at age 96 on March 9 and was survived by his wife of 22 years, Georgia Hahn Key, and many family members.

"Life with Sidney was one big adventure," said the Rev. Marilyn von Roeder-Kunkel during his funeral.

She recalled his gorgeous smile, that he sat in the same pew each week with his wife and that he loved to sing old Methodist hymns.

Charlie Baros said he worked with his friend for 29 years at Union Carbide before retiring in 1985.

Afterward, they used to tend cattle together.

Baros said he couldn't remember if Key was ever upset with anybody because he was so nice to be around.

"He was a fine guy," Baros said, adding he was always a faithful Marine.

He served as a major in the Marines in WWII in the South Pacific Theater, where he was awarded the Purple Heart by Admiral Chester W. Nimitz.

He also received the Presidential Unit Citation with four oak leaf clusters and the Pacific Theater ribbon with four battle stars among other honors.

After his years of service, Key kept in touch with his Marine Corps buddies and went to annual reunions.

Al Hartman recalled he met his friend of more than 40 years at Union Carbide.

He said Key didn't speak a lot, but he was still quite a character.

"He was a very generous person," he said. "He was tough, too."

Hartman remembered when he went out on the boat with Key, he was serious about fishing.

But when his alma mater, Texas A&M, was playing, he didn't care if he bothered the fish; he kept the radio on.

Family members said Key was the kind of person who kept busy and was always working on a project.

He belonged to several clubs and enjoyed restoring his 1929 Ford Cabriolet.

In his 90s, Key told a family member he figured out how to fix his carburetor by watching a YouTube tutorial.

He was also known by neighbors to walk his beloved dachshund twice a day.

His stepgranddaughter, Chelsea Wilborn, said he was always polite.

Although the relation wasn't biological, he was a grandfather figure to her.

"He was just one of those people who would welcome anyone," she said.

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