- On Sunday, November 6, 2022, Major Earl J. Speirs of Hallandale Beach, FL peacefully left this world at the age of 81 with his loving family by his side.
He was preceded in death by his parents William and Helen (Merritt) Speirs and by his lovely and adoring sister, Joyce Speirs Roeser.
He was the loving father of his three surviving children, Jessica Speirs of Dania Beach, FL Eric Speirs of Hollywood, FL and Tara Speirs of Hallandale Beach, FL. He is also survived by his adoring grandchildren Mason Feig, Abagail Speirs, and Bailey Feig and his brothers Edward W. (Else) Speirs of Pompano Beach, FL and John M. (Karen) Speirs of Smithfield, VA. He also had many adoring nieces, nephews, and other relatives.
Earl, also known as Dad, Papa, Uncle Earl, Opa, Brother, and Earl the Pearl, was born in Middletown, NY March 9th in 1941. He grew up in Slate Hill, NY and spent his free time hunting, skiing, swimming, and causing trouble at the Merritt Orchard. In his formative years, he attended a one-room schoolhouse taught by Mrs. Duvall, who he claimed was the greatest teacher to have ever taught. He then went to Middletown High School where he became an accomplished member of the swim team. He also participated in his high school's student exchange program and lived in Germany for a few terms where he learned fluent German. In his later life, he commonly used mach schnell and loved Oktoberfest and beer.
After high school, he went to Alleghany College and majored in history, a subject he loved. He went on to set a few swim team records and was a member of the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity. He then entered the Air Force as an officer after graduating from flight school and flew a variety of different aircraft. He served in Vietnam, undertaking many difficult missions. Afterwards, he continued to serve in the Air Force reserves and was hired to fly for Pan Am Airways in 1967. He proudly flew for them until they went under in 1991. Afterwards, he flew with Tower Air and transported soldiers in and out of combat zones during Desert Storm in the First Gulf War. He married the late Linda Ellen (Dunning) Speirs in 1972 and raised his family in Wallkill, NY and later moved to South Florida in 1990.
Since then, he has enjoyed traveling especially to Forestburg, NY during the summers and coming up for hunting season with his family and friends; he also loved to camp in the Florida Keys. He was the light in many peoples' lives and constantly made people smile with his jokes and infectious laughter.
A visitation for family and friends will be held from 4-7 PM Sunday, November 13, 2022 at the Cornelius, Dodd & Connell Funeral Home, 26 Grove St., Middletown, NY. Funeral services will be held 11 AM Monday, November 14th, at the funeral home. Interment with military honors will follow at the Wallkill Cemetery, Phillipsburg, NY.
Earl was a people person and a man of the world. He visited almost every country on the planet and likely encircled the world thirty times or more. Please join us to send this incredible man off on his final flight.
Memorial contributions to and veterans organization would be appreciated.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Cornelius, Dodd & Connell Funeral Home, Middletown.
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