He was born Sept. 9, 1929, to George Leslie and Frances (Pickering) Hughes Bruner in Danville. Claude married Wanda Rovine Meece on Dec. 30, 1950, in Piggott, Ark.; she remained devotedly by his side until his passing. They would have been married 63 years this September.
Other survivors include his sons Les (Donna) Hughes of Covington, Ind., and Claude LeRoy (Zella Fay) Hughes of Oakwood; six grandchildren, Rob (Misty) Hughes of Danville, Bill Hughes of Covington, Ind., Salena (Doug) Jones of Westville, Desiree (Tim) Rice of Georgetown, Crystal Hughes of Los Angles, Calif., and Christopher Hughes of Charleston IL.; and eight great-grandchildren, Gage, Brooke, Chase and Brianna Hughes, Madison Faith, Elijha Dewey and Ean Douglas Jones and Macenzie Desiree Rice.
Claude was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Jim and George Hughes; and sisters, Norma Britton, Marilyn Hecker and Rose Hornaday.
Claude attended Danville High School until leaving at age 15 to work as a fireman for the railroad in order to help support his family. Claude joined the United States Army and served his country with honor during the Korean War.
After returning home he went back to work for the CSX railroad and was promoted to an engineer, where he stayed until his retirement after 43 years of service. Later in life he proudly earned his GED.
An avid traveler, Claude and his beloved wife completed seven cruises together and visited many countries, including Ireland and Italy. Claude was a 32 degree Mason with the Valley of Danville Anchor Lodge, a member of the Gao Grotto and an active member of the Ansar Temple of the Shriners. Claude loved to go fishing, playing cards and spending time with his family.
The family would like to extend a personal thank you to the Danville Veterans Affairs Palliative Care Unit for the great care they provided for Claude before his passing.
A celebration of Claude's life will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 17, at the Southside Church of the Nazarene in Tilton with Pastor Kent Pitcher officiating and burial at Sunset Memorial Park in Danville. Military honors will be performed by the American Legion Post No. 210. A visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 16, at Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center, A Life Celebration Home, in Westville with Masonic funeral rites performed by the Masonic valley of Danville Anchor Lodge and Danville Gao Grotto at 7:30 pm. Memorials may be made in Claude's name to a charity of the donor's choice. Condolences may be left at www.sunsetfuneralhome.com.