Denver Joe Rees, 92, of Mountain Grove, passed away Feb. 1, 2020, at the Springfield Rehab and Healthcare Center in Springfield, Mo.  He was born on Sept. 25, 1927, in Grandview, Mo., the son of Virgil and Virgie Harmon Rees.

Mr. Rees was brought up strict and worked hard in the logging woods at 13 years old.  He attended and graduated from Summersville High School where he was a star basketball player and where he met his wife, Betty.  They were juniors and seniors when they started dating; she was only a junior and he didn’t want her to go back to school for her senior year, so she quit and they were married.

Mr. Rees’ work history was mainly in wood; this consisted of logging and owning a post mill and pallet company.  He would later own and operate the El Rancho Truck Stop for several years. Most of his endeavors were with his father, Virgil.  After selling the truck stop, he and his wife remodeled houses, often being in a house a short time before selling.  He once bought a house in the morning and sold it the same afternoon. They laughed and said, “at least we were already packed.”

Both rededicated their lives in 2010 when their daughter’s minister visited before Betty went to the nursing home and prayed with them. That’s when they both accepted their life and work should be again offered up to Jesus.  They attended Elk Creek Baptist Church in their younger years and then the Mountain Grove First Baptist Church.  Mr. Rees loved attending the Mountain Grove Christian Church. After he moved to assisted living, they picked him up every week for church services.

Mr. Rees was preceded in death by his parents; his daughter, Melinda; his wife of 65 years, Betty, and his brother, Buck Rees. 

He is survived by his children, Connie Mallon of Springfield and Randy Rees of Cabool; and brother, Dwayne Rees and sisters Betty Ream and Jenny McKinney; four grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and 7 great-great-grandchildren. 

Funeral services are at 11 a.m., Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020, at the Elliott-Gentry-Carder Funeral Home funeral chapel with the Rev. Darrel Loughridge officiating.  Interment will be in the Ozark Cemetery near Houston.

Online condolences may be made at

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