RAYMOND - Long-time harbor resident and retired educator, Walter Truman Lentz passed away at the age of 95 of age related causes at the Willapa Harbor Care Center on Jan. 2, 2010.
He was born Nov. 8, 1914, in Brush Prairie to Walter and Gertie Dickson Lentz. When he was in the eighth grade the family moved to Chinook, where he attended Ilwaco High School, graduating in 1933. During this time he worked with the horse seining for salmon in Baker Bay. He attended Willamette University and then graduated from Central Washington State College in Ellensburg. While at Central, he met Lois I. Fuller of Seattle and they were married Dec. 29, 1939.
Following graduation from college, Mr. Lentz taught in Sunnyside and in 1942 he was hired to teach in South Bend. He taught his first year in the "A" Street School and served as an assistant coach. In 1943 he became the varsity coach of all three boys sports and in 1946 the football team was undefeated in the Pacific County league.
Mr. Lentz gave up coaching and became principal of the "new" elementary school in 1953. During the summers he served as a crew foreman for the State Department of Forestry. He was elected president of the Washington State Elementary Principals Association in 1964-65. He retired from the school district in 1974 after 32 years of service and influencing an untold number of students. Following retirement, he and his wife became active in square dancing, gardening and enjoyed traveling both in the United States and around the world until her death in July 1988.
On July 28,1990, he married Kay Fuller and they later moved to Raymond where they enjoyed square dancing and traveling for a number of years. She provided loving care and companionship for him throughout the remainder of his life.
The popular educator was invited to numerous class reunions, was named to the South Bend School District Wall of Fame in 1998 and was the Grand Marshall of the South Bend Labor Day parade in 2004. He was a member of the South Bend United Methodist Church, and through the years had been active in Kiwanis, Lions, Elks, Masonic Lodge Number 41, Eastern Star, Boy Scouts of America and as a hospice volunteer. He enjoyed hunting and fishing and was often heard to remark "the hunting was good, but the finding was poor."
He is survived by his wife, Kay, of Raymond; children, Martin (Barbara) Lentz of Palouse; Nancy (John) Hamilton of Junction City, Ore., David (Diana) Lentz of Victoria, Texas and Carl (Janet) Lentz of Aloha, Ore.; grandchildren Scott and Brian Lentz, Brenda Hamilton-Mahler, Nathan Hamilton, Patrick and Kevin Lentz and Ana Lentz-Hammonds, as well as several great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers, James, Don and Dick; and two sisters, Wanda and Waneta.
A family celebration of life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the South Bend High School Scholarship Fund. Arrangements are in care of Stoller's Mortuary in Raymond.