Charles "Les" Hardin

22 febrero , 193316 mayo , 2020

Charles Lesley “Les” Hardin, 87, passed away Saturday, May 16, 2020, at Boone Hospital Center in Columbia, Missouri. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, a private family graveside service will be held at 3:00 pm on Friday, May 22, 2020, at Memorial Park Cemetery in Columbia, Missouri. The service will be streamed via Facebook Live at Memorial Funeral Home, Crematory & Memorial Park Cemetery Facebook page for those unable to attend. A Celebration of Life event will be held once restrictions are lifted. Les was born February 22, 1933, to Dewey B. and Rachael (McCallister) Hardin of Brown’s Station, Missouri. He was a graduate of University High School in Columbia, Missouri. Les was honorably discharged from the U.S. Air Force after serving during the Korean War. He went on to serve as three-time Commander of VFW Post 280, in Columbia, Missouri, and was honored to participate as a veteran on Central Missouri Honor Flight #45 on April 18, 2017. Les worked as an ironworker for many years before founding W&L Steel Erectors with his wife, Wanda, in 1989. They joined forces with another couple in 1995 to build an additional company, A&H Steel Erectors. Many of the buildings we see around central Missouri were built under the direction of Les and his team. The Hardin’s celebrated 30 years of success by selling both companies in 2019. Les and Wanda also built and operated Catfish Corner in Columbia, Missouri, where they served the best catfish and hushpuppies for over 10 years. Even after Les’ health prevented them from continuing daily operations, he donated equipment and supplies so that VFW Post 280 could continue frying up his specialties most Friday nights. When Les wasn’t working, he invested in raising and racing quarter horses throughout the Midwest. Les loved to play poker and test his luck on scratch off lottery tickets or visits to casinos in Las Vegas, Reno, Biloxi, and Atlantic City. Although Les was known as a loud and rather opinionated individual, he strongly believed in giving back to the central-Missouri communities he called home for almost 90 years. If he could help, he would help. Starting in the late 1960’s, Les provided the machinery, know-how, and the wonderful dirt from the bottoms of New Franklin to build a new baseball field at the site of the current Hallsville (Missouri) Intermediate School. He went on to get a new Press Box built at the Hallsville (Missouri) High School Football stadium in 2006 and followed that up by donating a John Deere Gator to the school for its use. Les was also a long-time supporter of the Hallsville Optimist Club, and a regular at local breakfast eateries. Through W&L Steel Erectors, Les and Wanda have been major sponsors of the local St. Jude Golf Classic for more than 15 years. An avid reader of classic westerns and dedicated farmers market shopper, Les was most often found with his trusty four-legged sidekick, Monk the dog. Les also grew to love watching game shows and spent many hours most weeks cheering on his favorite sports teams from the warmth and safety of his recliner. He enjoyed being surrounded by all of his grand and great-grandkids, making them realize that his bark was most often worse than his bite. Les is survived by his wife, Wanda; sons, Mike Hardin (Debbie), Danny Hardin (Karen), and Billy Hardin (Cheryl); step-daughter, Kelli Offutt Farm (Jim); step-son, Jeff Offutt (Cheryl); grandkids, Brandon Hardin (Rachel), Cody Hardin (Lacy), Jennifer Hardin, Lenze Hardin Shannon (William), Jake Hardin (Jaimie), Lori Hardin, Keegan Offutt, Pierce Offutt, Sophie Offutt, Andrew Fram, and Wilson Fram; and 14 great-grandchildren, as well as one sister, Louise Lawson (Doug), and brother, Donald Hardin, all of central Missouri, and his twin, Wesley Hardin (Sandy) of Bossier City, Louisiana.

He was preceded in death by his parents, as well as his siblings, Edward Hardin, James “JR” Hardin, Dewey Hardin, Jr, Marion Eugene “Gene” Hardin, William Francis Hardin, and Helen Virginia Hardin Kircher, and two grandchildren, Melissa A Hardin and Jeremiah Michael Hardin.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital or Central Missouri Honor Flight in care of Memorial Funeral Home.

At this time, we are limiting the occupancy of our building to 50 people due to COVID-19 restrictions. We ask for your understanding and cooperation in our efforts to keep our families and staff safe. Please be prepared to be directed by staff when you arrive for visitations and services.


  • Billy Hardin, Active Pallbearer
  • Mike Hibbs, Active Pallbearer
  • Mike Scheperle, Active Pallbearer
  • Greg Wade, Active Pallbearer
  • Karl West, Active Pallbearer
  • Kevin West, Active Pallbearer
  • Brandon Hardin, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Cody Hardin, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Jake Hardin, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Jeremy Hardin, Honorary Pallbearer (in spirit)
  • Keegan Offutt, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Pierce Offutt, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Wilson Fram, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Andrew Fram, Honorary Pallbearer

  • St. Jude Childrens Hospital or Central Missouri Honor Flight


  • Live Streamed Commital Service

    viernes, 22 mayo , 2020


Charles "Les" Hardin

have a memory or condolence to add?

Carolyn & Tom Reddin

mayo 22, 2020

Wanda & family,

So sorry to hear of your loss. You and your family our in our thoughts and prayer.

Jo Basel

mayo 21, 2020

Uncle Les always seemed larger than life. I know he will be missed. My condolences and prayers on his passing and to his family.
From Jo Ray Hardin Basel

Donna Graves

mayo 20, 2020

Mike, Danny, Billy,
I am so sorry to learn Uncle Les has passed. As a young girl, Uncle Les seemed larger than life and that never really changed. Everyone knew when he arrived at any dinner and he was always in charge wherever he was. One of my favorite things he did was to leave Grandma and Grandpa's living room as they had it. The rest of the house was his but when you stepped through the living room door you were back in the 1960's. There will never be another. Love, Donna Kircher Graves

Jenny Baker

mayo 20, 2020

I'm so sorry to hear about Les. He seemed to be such a good guy. He was always joking with me and Charlie, going to miss him being around.

I'm sorry we won't be able to attend the service, I broke my ankle and in a boot, I'm not getting around very good. I hope I can watch the service on facebook.

If there is anything we can do, please don't hesitate to call us.

Charles & Jenny Baker

Konnie Brooks

mayo 20, 2020

Wanda and Family:
Thinking of you and prayers. We go way back= lots of memories, laughs and talks. Horse talk, Cat Fish Corner meals and laughing over coffee while there. Remember Les bringing us samples of catfish on the way home from Oklahoma telling us he was going to have one of those "Cat Fish" diners. The " 2 horse trailer" I have and use to this day. Fun times at the Christmas parties. Will always be remembered! Love to all.
Konnie and Lana Brooks

Jackie Carter

mayo 19, 2020

Our family would go to Catfish Corner to visit with Les and Wanda as much as we would go there for the food. Amazing couple...and the best catfish ever with all the fixings. Loved his stories. He was a true gentleman. Prayers and hugs to his family during this difficult time.

Sondra Conklin

mayo 19, 2020

Les will be greatly missed by our family. Randy and Ryan have so many Les stories that they will tell for years to come. He was like a 3rd grandpa to Ryan and a great friend to Randy.

Sharion Dunfee

mayo 19, 2020

My thoughts and prayers are with Les' family. I knew him many years ago, my husband and I rented stalls in his barn for our horses, Les was a great friend and neighbor. I was raised in the Hallsville/Brown Station area.

Kara Rounkles

mayo 19, 2020

I had the pleasure of working with the Hardin family for the past 30 years. Les sounded loud and gruff the first time I heard him on the phone. I quickly learned that’s just the way he talked and loved to hear his larger than life laugh. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Hardin family and crew from all of us at Chillicothe Iron and Steel Inc.

Roberta Norman

mayo 19, 2020

Knew Les and Wanda thru our daughter who worked at Catfish Corner for many years. They were so good to her and she enjoyed the years she worked there. Even had a baby shower there when Christy was pregnant and our grandson who is now 12, grew up there! We had a table full of people for dinner at there closing day! Condolences to Wanda and family!