David Eugene Howard
David Eugene Howard
  • August 24, 1926 - October 21, 2017
  • Merced, California

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David E. Howard, 91

David Eugene Howard, 91, was born Aug. 24, 1926 in Salisbury, N.C., and passed away peacefully Oct. 21 in Merced after a brief illness. Dave was preceded in death by his wife of 59 years, Imogene Helms Howard; by his parents, Robert and Suzanne Simon Howard; by his three sisters, Marguerite “Tweet” Blackwell, Beulah Mae “Boots” Shaver and Annie Blackwell; and by his brother, Robert Howard Jr. He is survived by his four children, Beverly (and Peter) Lang of Merced, Gwen Greenwood of Loomis, Laura (and Malcolm) Fortune of Stockton, and Robert Howard of Loomis, and by his beloved dog, Bonnie Blue. He also is survived by his seven grandchildren, Kristin (and David) Eoff of Carrollton, Texas, Karen Lang of Merced, Kathryn (and Elden) Cortes of Duarte, Alexandra Fortune of Stockton, Katherine Fortune of San Francisco, Ashley Greenwood of Loomis, and Christopher Greenwood of Roseville; by six great-grandchildren, Hayley Eoff of Norman, Okla., Alec and Adam Eoff of Carrollton, Texas, and three great-grandsons in Duarte; and by many nieces and nephews.

A World War II Navy veteran, Dave had recently celebrated his 91st birthday and had lived a long, full life doing all the things he loved: woodworking, camping, traveling, flying, sailing, gardening, fishing, taking photos, and enjoying the outdoors. Dave was always active, using his construction skills to help others as well as build several sailboats, a large woodshop, and additions to his home. He had a pilot’s license and enjoyed flying friends and relatives in small planes up and down the Central Valley. He and Imogene were active members of Stockton Covenant Church and the Tuleberg Good Sams camping club.

Dave was raised in rural Salisbury, driving a tractor, learning Morse code in the Boy Scouts, acting in high school plays and raising pet squirrels. After graduating from high school, he enlisted in the Navy on June 8, 1944. He served as a radioman on a destroyer in the South Pacific during World War II until his discharge in 1947 as a Seaman First Class. After returning home, he married Imogene on Aug. 24, 1947 in Brentwood. They moved to Stockton shortly afterward to start their new life together. Dave­­ worked for American Moulding & Millwork Co. for many years, retiring as a purchasing agent in 1989. He loved animals, particularly his dogs, and spending time with his family. He leaves his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren with wonderful memories and will be missed always.

A private graveside service will be held Saturday at Union Cemetery in Brentwood. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to the charity of one’s choice. Please sign guestbook at www.deyoungchapels.com