John "Clay" Argent

Posted

March 22, 1925 - May 07, 2019

John "Clay" Argent, 94, of Parrish, passed away Tuesday, May 7, 2019, at Ridgeview Health Services.

Argent was a WWII Army veteran. He served as a corporal with Battery C 925th anti-aircraft artillery automatic weapons battalion. He served in Bismark Archipelago, Northern Solomons and Southern Phillipines. He received the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, The Phillipines Liberation Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal and WWII Victory Medal. Clay was always known for his baseball skills. To his surprise, the Navy came to find him on his Army base to play in a baseball game they desperately needed to win. He agreed and led them to victory. However, his main reason for playing was not winning, but getting a good meal they promised him in exchange for his services. In artillery training he was once told to fire "at will", Clay did not fire and was asked why by his commander. His response "I was enlisted to fire at Hitler not Will." He had his appendix removed going down he runway in an airplane at Leyte Airfield. He said that he gave his all to the Army, even his appendix! His service ended as he was on the front line preparing to invade Japan the next morning when he received news that the war was over. His response "Good, I really didn't want to go!" When Clay returned home, he was hired by Gorgas Mines to do nothing but play semi-pro baseball. He then went to the Philadelphia Phillies, and his teammate  Tommy Lasorda was the pitcher. They remained in contact through the years. 

He did not like the traveling lifestyle, so he left the Phillies and returned home and met the love of his life Barbara Wideman. They met at a dance and he knew she was the one. They married and danced together for 65 years, and what great dancers they were. He was an avid hunter and fisher. He even made his own fishing lures for which he was famous. He and Barbara traveled out west often to hunt on a friends ranch in Wyoming. He loved Alabama Football and going to games. He enjoyed traveling, camping and gathered many special friends through the years. He loved his family and made sure they knew. 

He joined the church at age 16. He was a Sunday School teacher at Aldridge Community Church until he joined the Army. His love and faith in the Lord carried him through his whole life and as God promises-through death. 

The family will receive friends today, May 9, 2019, from 6 until 8 p.m. at Collins-Burke Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held Friday, May 10, 2019, at 11 a.m. in the Collins-Burke Chapel, with burial at Walker Memory Gardens. 

Mr. Argent was preceded in by his parents, Tom and Margaret Argent; brothers, Tommy Joe Argent and Hyrom Argent.

He is survived by his wife, Barbara Argent.

Pallbearers will be Ronald Mullen, Matt Irvin, Jason Irvin, Joe Kimbrell and Dave Forrester.

Collins-Burke Funeral Home, Jasper; 205-384-5571