Leon Cecil "Tony" Downs, a lifelong resident of Toms River, New Jersey died peacefully Tuesday, in the presence of his family. He was 81 years old.
Born in 1931, Tony attended Toms River High School before joining the US Air Force in 1948. He served during the Korean Conflict as an Airman First Class before being honorably discharged in 1952. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal and the Korean War Commemorative Medal.
He later joined Jersey Central Power & Light as a lineman where he worked for 38 years before retiring in 1991.
He was a skilled outdoorsman and an avid hunter and fisherman. He instilled his passion and respect for the outdoors in his children. He was a charter and lifetime member of the Groundswiper's Rod and Gun Club in Toms River. He also was a member of the George P. Vanderveer American Legion Post 129 in Toms River.
He is survived by his children, Leon Downs of Toms River, Larry Downs of Cream Ridge, Harvey Downs of Barnegat, and Diana Skerletts of Pt. Pleasant. He is also survived by nine grandchildren: Jake Skerletts, Brendan Skerletts, Sarah Downs, Neal Skerletts, Travis Downs, Thomas Skerletts, Emma Downs, Hanna Downs, and Maggie Downs.
Funeral Services will be private under the direction of Anderson & Campbell Funeral Home in Toms River, NJ. Tony will be laid to rest at a later date at Brigadier General William C. Doyle Veteran's Memorial Cemetery in Wrightstown, NJ.
The family requests that memorial donations be directed to the Wounded Warrior Project at http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/donate.aspx
or by mail to Wounded Warrior Project. P.O. Box 75851 Topeka, Kansas.