HAROLD GLEN STRICKLAND, Jr. - 64 - Lineman with General Telephone Co.
MULBERRY - Harold Glen Strickland Jr. ("Hal", "Red", "Strick"), of Mulberry arrived in Heaven on October 15, 2012, following a brief, but very courageous battle with a rare form of cancer.
Hal was born on November 20, 1947, in Plant City, Florida, to Peggy Harris Strickland and Harold Glen Strickland (deceased).
> He is survived by his mother, Peggy Strickland of Mulberry; his devoted wife, Donna Murphy Strickland of Mulberry; his brother, Michael Strickland and sister-in-law, Dien of Mulberry; his son, Tom Strickland of Jacksonville; his twin daughters, Carey Strickland of Clearwater, and Tarey Smith of Charlotte, North Carolina; his Aunt, Sharon and Uncle Lorenzo Hooker of Mulberry; his Uncle, Bobby and Aunt Joan Harris of Lakeland; his Cousin, Billy Hooker and his wife Mashell Hooker (who was one of Hal's chemo nurses) of Mulberry; his beautiful granddaughters, Keely and Fiona Smith of Charlotte, N.C.; his young niece, Sarah of Mulberry, and other cousins.
> He is predeceased by his Aunt Donna and Uncle Johnny Jackson of Mulberry. Also missing Hal will be his step children: Rachel Pinner of Lakeland, Ty Pinner of Winter Haven, Amy Mobley of Winter Haven, grandson Nolan Mobley, and his longtime close friend Liz Jenkins and her family of Lakeland.
Hal attended local Mulberry schools and graduated from Mulberry High School in 1965. He started working with General Telephone on May 23, 1966. He was proud to be a lineman with over 46 years of dedicated service and was known for his exemplary work ethic and wry sense of humor. The company became Verizon in 2000; he worked out of the Bartow, Plant City, and Lakeland centers. Deteriorating health forced his retirement, or he would have worked until he was 70, just as he had always planned. Hard work is all he had ever known, on and off the job. The close camaraderie of his fellow workers were his fringe benefits. They were an extension of his family and more like a brotherhood. His workers share that he was an excellent teacher, and that "they felt safe with him on the job." Hal was a selfless man with indomitable will, a man's man. He was from the old school where your word is your bond. He sat down long enough to eat, and then there was work to be done. He loved to work and to push himself. He was a man of few words and simple tastes: he enjoyed watching his calves run in the pasture, anticipating his vegetable seeds breaking through the earth, making his own sausage, repairing his own equipment, and finding the bullseye at the shooting range. He was an avid outdoorsman and cattleman and was equally at home cooking or sacheting across the dance floor. He loved the beach and even made many of his own cast nets; smoked mullet was one of his favorite feasts to share with family and friends. He was a deeply spiritual man, sharing humble acts of kindness towards others. He can't be replaced, and his prayers were that he would be rejoined with his family, friends, and fellow man through eternity. He knew where he was destined and was at peace with his journey.
The family wishes to express their appreciation to his endearing oncologist Dr. Mulaparthi, her staff, and the chemo nursing staff at Watson Clinic, "they are truly our angels of mercy". Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to the compassionate nurses of Lakeland Regional's B-6th floor and the Palliative Unit nurses. The family appreciates all the prayers and acts of kindness that have been extended to our family. Donna Strickland especially thanks Wayne and Brenda Hamilton, Liz Jenkins, and Jeff Jackson for being there in so many ways for she and Hal.
Hal donated his organs for future research and will be cremated. Seigler Funeral Home of Mulberry, handled this process. All of the families that are affected by cancer would appreciate your support to the American Cancer Society .
"God saw that you were getting tired and a cure was not to be. So He put his arms around you and whispered "Come to Me." A golden heart stopped beating, hard working hands now rest. God broke our hearts to prove to us, He only takes the best." ( Ledger, Oct. 21, 2012 )