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Eldon Leroy Propst
January 12, 1922 ~ February 4, 2023 (age 101) 101 Years Old
Eldon Leroy Propst was born January 12, 1922, one of five children born to Elmer and Eva (Anna) (Obrist) Propst. Eldon was 101 years young when he passed away on February 4, 2023, at his home in Albany. Eldon grew up in Albany and graduated from Albany High School in 1940. After high school, he was hired by Western Electric and stayed until October 1943 when he enlisted in the Navy. He served 3 years, first stationed in Bremerton, WA, Williamsburg VA, and Hueneme, CA. His service took him to France and what was known as the European Theater. He received 3 medals, American Area Campaign, the European African M.E. Area Campaign, and the World War II Victory Medal. He was a petty officer holding the EM2C rank. (Electricians Mate).
After his military service, he returned to Oregon and his job with Western Electric (later known as ATT/Century Link), as an installer where he continued to work until his retirement.
The job took him to many places in California and Oregon where he met his first wife, Ann Vidal, in Klamath Falls. They married in 1948 and had 3 children Vickie (Robert) Green, Steven (Marlene) Propst, and Kimberly (Jerry) York. They were married for 19 years.
On October 16, 1981, he married Donna Schelenbaum. She was a schoolteacher, so summers were filled with traveling to various places either in their RV or taking cruises and other trips. He was a member of a Winnebago Itasca Cascade Travelers Group that took them on many adventures. Donna preceded him in death on February 4, 2014.
He was preceded in death by sisters Wanita Haugen and Wilma Fryer; and brother Allen Propst. He is survived by children Vickie (Robert) Green, Steven (Marlene) Propst, and Kimberly (Jerry) York; brother Bruce Propst; and 4 grandchildren: Kacie Nelson, Kyler York, Jerad York, and Shayne Propst.
In 2016, a highlight for Eldon was being invited to Washington DC as part of the South Willamette Honor Flight for WWII veterans. His grandson Shayne accompanied him, making great memories for them both. He was very proud of being a WWII vet and ALWAYS wore the hat he received on the trip “The Greatest Generation.” He loved going to the local restaurants Sweet Waters, Pop’s, and Cascade Grill. He was honored with a visit from Albany PD on his 100th birthday and a parade of well-wishers driving by to honk and wave. Many people in town would thank him for his service and his standard answer was always “Well, it was a necessary thing”!!
Eldon was a lifetime member of several service organizations including the Elks for 73 yrs., the American Legion for 58 years, and a past VFW and Eagles Lodge member but he was most proud of his 68-year membership with The St Johns Masonic Lodge of Albany.
A graveside service with military honors will be at 10 a.m. on Friday, August 4, at Willamette Memorial Park in Millersburg.
Memorial contributions may be made to SafeHaven Humane Society in Albany or American Legion Post 10 in Albany.
AAsum-Dufour Funeral Home is handling the arrangements (www.aasum-dufour.com).