LAKELAND: James Ronald "Ron" Powell, age 79, of Lakeland, Florida, passed away Tuesday, November 2nd, 2021. He was a survivor, who overcame many challenges in his life. He never gave up hope and had a tremendous strong will to live even after suffering a stroke 4 1/2 years ago. He went into the hospital October 15, for a simple 15 minute surgical procedure. Two weeks later, after a courageous battle with sepsis induced, cardiorenal failure and pneumonia, he was placed into palliative care Tuesday afternoon and passed away peacefully that night with his 3 children, Barbara, Allen, and Elaine by his side. We're absolutely heartbroken and unsure which pain is worse - the shock of what happened or the ache for what never will.
A gathering of family and friends will begin at 12:30pm with a celebration of life service to follow at 2:30pm, Saturday, November 13th, 2021 with Pastor Christopher Scott Wyatt and will be held at Annie Pfeiffer Chapel on the campus of Florida Southern College (1085 Johnson Avenue, Lakeland, FL 33803). A graveside service and entombment will immediately follow at Lakeland Memorial Gardens Mausoleum (2125 Bartow Road Lakeland, FL 33801). In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in memory of Ron Powell to the Harrison School for the Arts Scholarship fund, 750 Hollingworth Road, Lakeland, FL 33801.
Ron was born March 4, 1942 in Newnan, Georgia and moved to Senoia in 1947 with his parents. They moved to Bartow, Florida in 1954 and finally to Lakeland in the late 50’s with his mom. Ron frequented the Dairy Delite where his friend, Marian Beebe, a carhop, introduced him to her best friend, Margaret Leith. Margaret soon became the love of his life, and on July 14th, 1962 Ron and Margaret were happily married at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church, where they were active members for over 50 years and together celebrated a loving marriage of more than 54 years.
Early on Ron received his pilot’s license, worked as an Electrician for Bryant Electric installing residential wiring; then as an Industrial Electrician for McCall Electric and Kraft Foods and moved into Industrial and Commercial sales for Chemco Electric, Fife Electric Supply and AA Electric. Ron was a licensed real estate agent and realtor and was certified in all the Dale Carnegie courses, received numerous top awards, and was an assistant instructor. Ron was a Master Mason and a 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason of Lakeland Lodge 91, a musician, and a talented recording engineer.
In 1970, he started and operated Vista Audio Productions, Inc. where he recorded and/or provided sound production services for: large theatrical productions, nationally run commercials, Cypress Gardens, The Walt Disney Company, The Miss USA Pageant, Chet Atkins, Bob Barker, Pat Boone, Dixie Carter, Dale Evans, Lee Greenwood, Liberace, Barry Manilow, Gregory Peck, The Platters, Ray Stevens, George Jones and Tammy Wynette.
Ron’s greatest passion was professionally recording thousands of individual musicians, soloist, ensembles, bands, choirs, and orchestras throughout the state of Florida and including American Choral Directors Association, Concordia Sacrae Vocal ensemble, Florida Bandmasters Association, Florida Vocal Association, Florida College Alumni Chorus, Florida Southern College, Sumphonia, University of Central Florida, University of South Florida. Ron also loved recording Bluegrass and Christian groups. Recordings from Vista Audio Productions, Inc. have been downloaded and listened to in over 50 countries.
Dad brought so much joy and happiness to the many hearts he touched, as he truly loved recording and capturing memories that could be shared and enjoyed by others in time to come. His infectious personality is most people’s first and lasting memory of him. The phrase, “He never met a stranger” encapsulates his warmth, funny, kindhearted, and gentle nature.
Dad always had a great listening ear, offered the best advice no matter the situation and was always a patient teacher who never let a teachable moment pass by. Those of us who were so blessed to have known him, know that he would have wanted even this moment to be a teachable one and one of his favorite sayings was “Whatever you do today, make sure it’s worthwhile, because you traded a day of your life for it.”
Dad was the most creative problem solver; the greatest unknown inventor and you were truly privileged if you had heard one of his incredible stories! Dad always said that “I’ve done so much with so little for so long, that I can now do ANYTHING with NOTHING at all!”
Dad was our world, our sunshine, and our hero who simply aged to perfection. He is now recording the angels in heaven with Mom by his side.
Survivors include his 3 children: Barbara Lynn Hardin (Don), Ronald Allen Powell and Margaret Elaine Evans (Craig); his grandchildren: Riley and Cameron Powell, Katelyn and Emily Evans and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Ron was preceded in death by his wife of 54 years, Margaret Caldwell (Leith) Powell, his parents James Burl Powell and Mary Gussie Howard (Powell); sister: Nora Leftwich, and brothers, James Burl (JB) Powell, and Bobby Craig Powell.
Special Request: Our entire family would greatly appreciate you sharing any funny stories, key moments, or memories with Dad, to preserve for use in a special family album for the grandkids. Your condolences, stories and any fond memories of Dad may also be shared at: www.lakelandfuneralhome.com.
We wish to express our deepest gratitude for your continued prayers and support during this difficult time, thank you!
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