Death of Governor Arch Alfred Moore Jr

On behalf of the officers and members of the Sons of the Revolution in the State of West Virginia, we extend our most sincere condolences to the family and friends of Governor Arch Alfred Moore Jr, who passed away on Wednesday, January 7, 2015. Governor Arch Alfred Moore Jr was a member of the West Virginia Society Sons of the Revolution.Governor Arch Alfred Moore JrArch Alfred Moore Jr
born: 16 Apr 1923, Moundsville, Marshall Co, WV
died: 07 Jan 2015, Charleston, Kanawha Co, WV, aged 91

Gov. Arch Alfred Moore Jr died on Wednesday, January 7, 2015 in Charleston, Kanawha County, West Virginia. He was West Virginia’s first and only three-term governor, serving from 1969-1977 and again from 1985 – 1989. He also served in the US House of Representatives from West Virginia from 1957-1969.

He served in the European Campaign during World War II and was seriously wounded by German machine gun fire in Germany in November 1944. He was decorated with the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Combat Infantryman’s Badge and European Theater of Operations Ribbon with three battle stars.

His wife, Sadie Shelley Riley Moore, died in September of 2014, aged 88.

He is survived by daughters, Shelley Moore Capito and Lucy Moore Durbin, and son Arch Alfred Moore III.

Funeral arrangements will take place in both Charleston and Moundsville, West Virginia, January 16-17, 2015.

A family receiving line is scheduled from 9:30-11:00 a.m. Friday, January 16, 2015 at the West Virginia Culture Center.

A memorial service will be held from 11 a.m. to noon on Friday, January 16, 2015 in the Norman L. Fagan State Theatre, inside the West Virginia Culture Center and will be open to the media.

A visitation is scheduled from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Friday, January 16, 2015 at Grisell’s Funeral Home in Moundsville, West Virginia.

A funeral service is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 17, 2015 at Simpson United Methodist Church in Moundsville, West Virginia. Interment will be in Riverview Cemetery, Moundsville, Marshall County, West Virginia.

The following is his obituary from Grisell’s Funeral Home:

Governor Arch Alfred Moore, Jr.
Governor Arch Alfred Moore, Jr., of Glen Dale, West Virginia, died peacefully in Charleston on January 7, 2015, surrounded by his family after several months of declining health. He was 91 years old.

Arch was born on April 16, 1923, in Glen Dale, W.Va. He was the son of the late Genevieve and Arch A. Moore, Sr. He is preceded in death by his wife of sixty-five years, Shelley Riley Moore, who died in September and a sister, Lucy “Joy” Sievertson. He is survived by his son, Arch A. “Kim” Moore III (Catherine) of Harpers Ferry, daughters Shelley Moore Capito (Charles) and Lucy Moore Durbin (John) of Charleston, grandchildren Riley Moore(Mina), Genevieve Moore, Arch Alfred Moore IV(Gina), Charles Capito(Laura), Arch Alfred Moore Capito(Katie), Shelley Macleod(Colin) and Sydney Durbin, and two great-grandchildren Celia and Charlie Capito. He is also survived by his brother, Harry “Moo” Moore (Alice) of Moundsville.

A basketball standout, Arch worked in a factory and on an oil pipeline following graduation from Moundsville High School. In May 1943, Arch joined the U.S. Army and became a Combat Sergeant in the 334th Infantry Regiment of the 84th Division. In November 1944, Sgt. Moore was severely wounded by machine-gun fire during an offensive near Geilenkirchen, Germany. The wound to his face fractured his jaw and severed his tongue. He was left to die in a beet field, but was rescued the next morning. Moore was awarded a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star for valor.

After numerous surgeries and a year of therapy, he learned to talk again. Arch finished his undergraduate degree in political science at West Virginia University in 1948. He was president of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity and an active student leader. He helped write the student body constitution, started Mountaineer Week, lobbied for the medical school to be built in Morgantown, and was twice elected Summit of Mountain. It was at WVU that he met his future best friend, Shelley Riley. They married in 1949, marking the beginning of a dedicated and loving 65-year marriage.

After finishing law school at WVU in 1951, Arch went into practice in Moundsville with his uncle. In 1952, Arch won his uncle’s former seat in the state legislature. Arch was elected in 1956 to represent the First Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives where he served until 1969. In Congress, Rep. Moore was a leader on issues such as Civil Rights, and military and foreign affairs. Rep. Moore was best known, however, for the excellent care and personal attention he paid his constituents.

In November 1968, he was elected governor of West Virginia, and reelected in 1972, becoming the first West Virginia governor to serve two four-year terms. During that time, most of the state’s four-lane highway system was built, which Gov. Moore considered his greatest achievement. He reformed the welfare, prison and mental health systems and extended civil service protection. He provided state employees with health insurance for the first time. School teachers received much-needed raises. Bridges, airports, libraries and new state office buildings, including the Culture Center, were built. A state black lung compensation act was passed. State government was computerized and modernized. He helped end a national coal strike. He oversaw the construction of 32 primary health care facilities, numerous vocational schools, community mental health centers, and other innovations.

He was recognized by his fellow governors, including Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter, who elected him chairman of the National Governor’s Conference. He served for several decades as the Republican National Committeeman for West Virginia and led the W.Va. delegation at numerous GOP national conventions. He cast the vote that put Gerald Ford over the top to win his party’s nomination for president in 1976.

Gov. Moore was re-elected governor in 1984, becoming the first and only three term governor of West Virginia. He was instrumental in removing the state from the retail liquor business, started the Lottery, reformed the tax structure, continued the road-building and led recovery efforts after a devastating flood in the eastern counties.

Moore demonstrated on a daily basis his love and passion for his fellow West Virginians, and much of the help he rendered was done quietly and without fanfare. He amazed West Virginians with his ability to remember thousands of names and faces. Until recent years, he worked every day in the same office he shared with his uncle in Moundsville. He and Shelley enjoyed traveling, golf, tennis, and attending as many of his grandchildren’s games, events, and graduations as possible. He and Shelley were faithful fans of the Mountaineers. He continued to follow politics and offer incomparable advice until the very end. He clung to the bonds of Earth just long enough to see his daughter Shelley sworn in as United States Senator, passing away hours after his children returned from Washington to be at his bedside.
While much of his legacy is tied to his public service, Arch’s most cherished legacy will be his family. They will remember “Grandpa”/ “Papaw”/ “Papa Moore” for Christmases spent in Glen Dale, family vacations with the entire Moore family and his annual “State of the Moore” address. His grandchildren will fondly remember Gov. Moore for his pride in them, his unwavering support and advice, his endless games of solitaire, his sweet tooth, and his flat out coolness.

Fulfilling a promise he made to himself and his Lord on the battlefield in Germany, Arch gave it his all every single day. His presence was felt as much as it was heard. His piercing blue eyes were as mesmerizing as his hypnotic oratory. He commanded every room, every chamber, every speech. He was fearless, tireless, and brilliant.

The family would like to thank the wonderful staff at the Arthur B. Hodges Center in Charleston who cared for their parents with love and dignity. They would also like to thank the caregivers who looked after them in their home in Glen Dale with great tenderness and skill. They would like to thank HospiceCare for their incredible compassion and talent who helped both parents and the family during their last moments.

The family will welcome visitors at the West Virginia Cultural Center in Charleston on Friday, January 16, 2015, from 9:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. A memorial service will follow in the Norm Fagan State Theater. Visitation will be from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Friday, January 16, 2015, at Grisell’s Funeral Home in Moundsville, WV. The funeral service will begin at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 17 at Simpson United Methodist Church in Moundsville . A private graveside service will follow. Tributes to Gov. Moore can be made to the Arch A. Moore, Jr. and Shelley Riley Moore Library Endowment at West Virginia University or to HospiceCare.