Dr. C. R. Hager, 93, beloved father and grandfather, passed away at Wesley Village in Wilmore, KY. He was a native of Jessamine County. Hager was a graduate of Nicholasville High School, received his AB degree from Asbury College, his BD from Asbury Seminary, a MA from the University of Kentucky, and an LLD from Asbury College. He completed further graduate studies at Columbia University and the University of Chicago.
He served in World War II as a transport commander in the United States Army spending two years in the South Pacific. He served in the National Guard for eight years and was honorably discharged with the rank of Captain.
Hager had a distinguished career in education as a school teacher, counselor with the Veterans Administration, liaison officer with the Kentucky Welfare Dept., and as superintendent of schools of Jessamine County for ten years. He was assistant dean of Extended Programs and Adult Education at the University of Kentucky for twenty seven years. He helped found the University’s Community College Program and served as its director of Extension. He also helped develop the Donovan Scholar’s program and served as director. He was a member of the Asbury College board of trustees and served as president of the Asbury College on three occasions and vice-president for academic affairs for one year.
He was executive director of the United Methodist Foundation. He served as secretary-treasurer and president of the Central Kentucky Education Association, president of the Kentucky Education Association, president of the Kentucky School Administrators Association, was a delegate to the World Conference on Education, and chairman of the Kentucky Older Adult Legislative Commission.
He had a distinguished record of service to the United Methodist Church. Hager was a member of the Nicholasville UMC, a delegate to the General Conference of the UMC on eight occasions, Kentucky Conference lay leader, and secretary of the Southeastern Jurisdiction of the UMC for twelve years. He was a founding member of the board of directors of Wesley Village and also served on the board of the Methodist Home of Kentucky.
He was also active in community affairs. Hager co-founded the Little League and Babe Ruth Leagues of Jessamine County, was a leader of Boy Scouts, and served as a charter member of the Withers Memorial Library board, 4-H Council, Fair Board, and the Jessamine County Beef Cattle Association.
He was honored as one of the original Heroes, Saints and Legends by Wesley Village. His family was selected as the UMC Family of the Year. Hager received the Asbury College “A” Award. He was chosen as Jessamine County Citizen of the Year and received the Jessamine County Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame Award. He was honored by the UK Phi Delta Kappa for meritorious service.
Dr. Hager was the son of Arch, Sr. and Myrtie Hager. He was preceded in death by three brothers: Lyman, Arch, Jr. and Elesteen and three sisters: Thelma Cobb, Eudel Cobb and Flossie Hayden. He is survived by a brother, Vernon and sister, Marie. His devoted wife, Ruth died in 1995. He has three children: Nela (Doug) Marshall, Dan (Sandy) Langer, and David (Kathleen Martin) Hager; twelve grandchildren: David and Elizabeth Marshall, Drew and Cindy Langer, Philip (Lisa), Neal (Shannon) and Jonathan (Natalie) Hager, Matt (Angelica) McMullen and Lorraine (Matt) Leet; Kelly, Jessica and Kristen Moore; and two great grandchildren: Julia Loveday and Jack Hager.
Pallbearers: David and Elizabeth Marshall; Cindy and Drew Langer; Philip, Neal and Jonathan Hager; Matt McMullen and Lorraine Leet
Honorary Pallbearers: A.D. Albright, Mary Jean Blackford, Harold Waits, Zeb Blankenship, Roger Chrismon, Clay Corman, Al Moulton, Ed McKinley, Taylor Phillips, Robert Jackson, Winston Smith, Sonny Moberly, Charles Crouse, Sr., and C. E. Crouse, Jr. as well as the members of the CR Hager Sunday School Class.
( In lieu of flowers please send contributions to the Nicholasville United Methodist Church Building Fund- 303 West Maple Street in Nicholasville or The Ruth Lansell Hager Scholarship Fund at Asbury College- 1 Macklem Drive, Wilmore.)
Visitation will be held in Hughes Auditorium at Asbury College, Wilmore, KY from 4:00 – 9:00 pm on Sunday, May 20th and 4:00 – 9:00 pm on Monday, May 21st. A service of praise for his life will be held in Hughes at 1:00 pm on Tuesday, May 22nd. Hager & Cundiff Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.