Eugene “Pistol” Gradel

June 10, 1929 - August 28, 2012

Eugene "Pistol" Gradel, age 83, of Freeburg, departed this life Tuesday, August 28, 2012, in the Capital Region Medical Center, Jefferson City. He was born on June 10, 1929, at Freeburg, a son of George Frank and Mary Magdalene (Haller) Gradel, Pistol was united in marriage on June 8, 1957, at Freeburg, to Leona Georgetta Lock, and to this union, two children were born. Pistol was a member of the Holy Family Catholic Church, Freeburg, and the Western Catholic Union. He had been employed in Freeburg as a truck driver for both the MFA Co-operative 280 for 48 years and Quaker Window Products Company for 15 years. He and his wife were owners and along with their family operated Leona and Pistol's Place in Freeburg for 12 years. Pistol never really retired and continued working until ill health in April of 2011. Pistol enjoyed truck driving, visiting with family and friends, hunting and fishing. Those left to mourn the passing of Pistol include: his wife, Leona Gradel, of the home in Freeburg; one son and daughter-in-law, Allen and Denise Gradel, Freeburg; one daughter and son-in-law, Brenda and Richard Becker, Freeburg; two granddaughters, Paige Becker and friend, Nick Lafferty, and Chelsea Becker and friend, Greg Ewers, all of Freeburg; one brother, Alfred "Buddy" Gradel, Freeburg; two sisters, Irene Stegeman, Jefferson City, and Marcella Gradel, Freeburg; and many other relatives and friends. He was preceded in death by his father on March 20, 1969, and his mother on December 23, 1999. The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated for Pistol at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, September 1, 2012, in the Holy Family Catholic Church, Freeburg, with Rev. Phil Niekamp officiating. Interment will be in the Holy Family Cemetery, Freeburg, under the direction of the Vienna Chapel of the Birmingham-Martin Funeral Homes. Visitation will be 4-8 p.m., Friday, August 31, 2012, with a Prayer Service at 7 p.m. followed by a Rosary Service, led by members of the Msgr. Gerald J. Kaiser Knights of Columbus Council No. 9700, Freeburg, all in the Holy Family Catholic Church, Freeburg. Visitation will continue in the church from 10 - 11 a.m., Saturday, September 1, 2012, prior to the Mass. Masses or memorial contributions to the Holy Family Catholic Church Building Fund, Freeburg, are preferred by the family with envelopes available at the Holy Family Church or the Vienna Office of the Birmingham-Martin Funeral Homes. Online condolences may be left at

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