Mr. Edward Joseph Ponikvar (Pony), 82, of Statesville, died Monday, October 14, 2013 at Iredell Memorial Hospital following a brief illness. Born March 25, 1931 in Leadville, Colorado to Staffie Harrington DeMay and William Harrington, both deceased. He attended school in Leadville and, at age 17, joined the U.S. Navy. He served in both the Korean and Vietnam Wars. He retired in April, 1974 as a Chief Boatswain's Mate Second Class. Being a true sailor, he amused his family and friends with many colorful stories about his travels. On April 14, 1973 he married the love of his life, Margaret (Peg) Odom. Pony and Peg enjoyed 36 years together before Peg passed away in 2009. They moved to a home near Lake Norman and enjoyed many years of boating. Pony was active with the annual National Balloon Rally and frequently participated in the chase crews. After his retirement from the navy he held several jobs. He worked at Statesville Fixture, Blackwelder Furniture and lastly at the Statesville Auto Auction. He was a member of First Baptist Church and attended services regularly.
Survivors include two daughters, Nancy Gatton (George) of Statesville and Becky Beasley of Cherryville. Also surviving are two sisters, JoAnn Bjorklund of Phoenix, Arozona and Mary Lou Eggan of Montana, grandchildren: Jason Gatton (Erin), of Hickory, Sara Hadden (Patrick) of Mooresville, Ashley Beasley of Raleigh, Katie Beasley of Raleigh and great grandchildren: Emma and Grace Hadden of Mooresville and Addison and Ava Gatton of Hickory.
Services celebrating Pony's life will be conducted at 2:00 Wednesday at the Westmoreland Chapel of Bunch-Johnson Funeral Home with Dr. Jeff Porter and Dr. Dave Scott officiating. The family will receive friends immediately following the service.
Condolences may be sent online to the family at www.bunchjohnsonfuneralhome.com.
Memorials may be given to the Building Fund of First Baptist Church in lieu of flowers, 815 Davie Ave. Statesville, N.C. 28677. Bunch-Johnson Funeral Home is entrusted with the arrangements.