Donald Barnhart Obituary

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In Memory of

Donald Barnhart

September 1, 1919 - December 17, 2013
Obituary

Aviation played a major role in Donald Barnhart's life time. Born in 1919 before there was transcontinental air traffic, he dreamed about becoming a pilot. But his vision in one eye made him ineligible to fly commercial aircraft. However, in 1941 he was hired by the fledgling United Airlines as a greeter at Portland's Airport and as an assistant aboard flights from Portland, Oregon to Boise, Idaho -- with Registered Nurses who were the Flight Attendants of those early days. He worked for United Air Lines for more than forty years, retiring in 1982. And his interest in flight continued through his subscription to Aviation Weekly and...
Aviation played a major role in Donald Barnhart's life time. Born in 1919 before there was transcontinental air traffic, he dreamed about becoming a pilot. But his vision in one eye made him ineligible to fly commercial aircraft. However, in 1941 he was hired by the fledgling United Airlines as a greeter at Portland's Airport and as an assistant aboard flights from Portland, Oregon to Boise, Idaho -- with Registered Nurses who were the Flight Attendants of those early days. He worked for United Air Lines for more than forty years, retiring in 1982. And his interest in flight continued through his subscription to Aviation Weekly and televised programs on space exploration and NASA launches.

His job at United Air Lines was interrupted by World War II when he served in the Army Signal Corps in North Africa and in Italy. After the war Don returned to UAL in Portland working first as a Crew Scheduler and then as a Flight Dispatcher. He was transferred to Seattle and later to San Francisco. He is a Lifetime Member of VFW Post 7427, San Mateo, CA. Don is also an Elks Life Member of Burien Lodge, WA #2143.

He was born to Clarence R. Barnhart and Bertha M. Nelson Barnhart of La Center. WA. They were living in Seattle at the time. They returned to La Center when Don was still an infant and he grew up on the Barnhart Family farm on the East Fork of the Lewis River. His boyhood days were happy days with memories of the old swimming hole, dairy cattle and helping with the milking, haying in the summertime and driving the early automobiles and motorcycles on the rural roads of North Clark County. Don's grandparents, F. Nels and Elisabeth Nelson left Dala Jarna, Sweden in 1888 and arrived in La Center in the fall of that year. The Nelson farmhouse still stands on the homestead just east of La Center.

When he retired from United Airlines Don and his wife Barbara built a home on a portion of the Barnhart homestead in La Center. Many happy years followed as they enjoyed the beauty of their farm. Married later in life, Don is survived by his wife Barbara of 42 years along with his brother Bill Barnhart and his children Carol, Keith, Larry, Karen and Eddie. In addition are his late sister Phyllis Kays' daughter Susan Clark and her husband Mark and their daughters Alicia and Sarah.

Funeral Services will be held at St. Mary of Guadalupe Church in Ridgefield on Saturday, December 28th at 11:00 a.m. followed by interment at St. Mary's Cemetery adjacent to the church. Memorial gifts may be sent to La Center Historical Museum 410 West 5th Street, La Center, WA 98629 or to a VFW Post, Elks Lodge or to your favorite charity.

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Columbian, The
DONALD F. BARNHART 1919 ~ 2013 Aviation played a major role in Donald Barnhart's life time. He was born to Clarence R. Barnhart and...

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