Sidney Johnston Hardy, Jr., 97, known to family and friends as “Billy,” passed away Tuesday, September 8, 2015, at Jackson Hospital in Montgomery. He was a lifelong resident of Alberta, AL.
He is preceded in death by his father Sidney Johnston Hardy, Sr., his mother Willie Delle Wills Hardy, and sister Catherine Hardy Cromer. He is survived by his wife of 54 years Isabel Oakes Hardy, daughter Hope Hardy Holt (Barry), granddaughter who was named for him Sidney Caroline Holt, grandson Barry “Reid” Holt, Jr. all of Montgomery, nephew Andrew McCorkle Cromer (Jo) Fairhope, and other loved family.
Billy was a lifelong member of the Gastonburg United Methodist Church where he served as treasurer, Sunday School Superintendent and in many other positions.
In the spring of 1940, Billy graduated from Alabama Polytenic Institute. After returning to Alberta, a representative from the Montgomery Weather Bureau Office asked him to provide precipitation observations. He accepted and on October 1, 1940, became the first official cooperative weather observer in the Alberta area. He continued his reporting until he enlisted in the Army Air Corps in February 1942. Following World War II, Billy retired with a medical discharge as a Second Lieutenant and lived in Colorado for several years. During this time his father held the position of weather observer. When he returned to Alberta, his father continued to hold the title but Billy assisted him most days. On January 1, 1977, Billy officially took back the role as Cooperative Weather Observer and served until January 25, 2015 which completed 37 years of service and a combined 75 years for father and son. He was presented with the National Weather Service’s John Companius Holm Award which is awarded annually for exemplary weather reporting and he was also recognized by the Weather Channel as the Observer of the Month for October 2002.
Visitation will be Thursday, September 10th from 10 am to 11 am at Lawrence Brown- Service Funeral Home with graveside service following at 11:15 New Live Oak Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family request donations to be made to the Gastonburg United Methodist Church, Gastonburg, AL or The United Methodist Children’s’ Home.
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