SPEECE, John W. “Bill,” 88, of St. Clairsville, OH, died peacefully December 20, 2012 at the Forest Hills Nursing Home.

Mr. Speece was born January 23, 1924 in Martins Ferry, OH, a son of John W. and Dora Pearl Hall Speece.

Bill was a 1942 graduate of Martins Ferry High School. Following graduation, he enlisted in the United States Army, serving in Company B, 1258 Engineers Combat Battalion. Bill was stationed in Europe, and fought in the battles of Central Europe, Ardennes, Rhineland, and the Battle of the Bulge. He received the Good Conduct Medal, the American Theater Service Medal, the European African Middle Eastern Theater Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, and a Purple Heart.

Bill had worked for Ohio Power as a Stationary Engineer for 35 years, retiring in 1986. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Martins Ferry. Bill enjoyed reading, watching college basketball, and most of all enjoyed spending time with his family.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, the former Evelyn Marie Paul; one son, Alan (Wendy) Speece of Penn Laird, VA.; two daughters, Karen Kafka of Gaithersburg, MD, and Pamela (Dan) Maxwell of Canfield, OH; one sister, Judy (Wes) Hawes of Geneva, OH.; eight grandchildren, Andrea Kafka, Matt Maxwell, Sarah Kafka, Justin (Stephanie) Kafka, Lindsay (Mickey) Jewell, Lorna (John) Taylor, Erin Speece, Mark Maxwell; and one great-granddaughter, Emmaline Jewell.

Family and friends will be received Monday, December 24, 2012, from 10- 11 a.m. at the Heslop Funeral Home, 415 Walnut St., Martins Ferry where funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. with Rev. Van D. Fisher officiating.

Interment will follow at Union Cemetery in St. Clairsville.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Bill’s name to the First United Methodist Church, 307 Clay St, Martins Ferry, OH 43935.

Military honors will be presented at the funeral home at 10:45 a.m. by the VFW Belmont County Honor Guard prior to the funeral service.

Online condolences may be expressed at www.heslop.com.