ILWACO Ilwaco resident Richard L. Patana, 81, died Feb. 18, 2011, in Ilwaco. Born in Astoria on March 19, 1929, he was the son of Richard L. and Diehless (Haring) Patana. His paternal grandparents came to the Peninsula from their native Finland in the late 1880s, settling in Ilwaco. It wasin Ilwaco that he grew up and attended Ilwaco grade school.
He worked in area sawmills, logged and trolled for salmon until 1946. That was the year he enlisted in the U.S. Army and for the ensuing three years he served his country and was honorably discharged in July 1949. Following his military service, he returned to the Peninsula and fished until 1974. He served eight years as president of the West Coast Trollers Association. He then moved to San Diego, Calif., where he worked in powerplant maintenance before moving to Boise, Idaho. There he was employed as a driver for Interstate Brands/Eddys Bread, earning excellent safety awards multiple times until retiring in 1991.
He and Glenna Mae Mosher were married June 8, 1951. They enjoyed their nearly 60 years of marriage and liked being snowbirds in retirement, making many new friendships. Then six years ago the couple returned to Ilwaco and his roots. He became active in the community he loved, serving as treasurer of PACE and also serving with the Ilwaco Food Bank.
Mr. Patana enjoyed playing solitaire, reading the newspaper, whistling, country and western music and his family. He often had a can of Coca Cola in his hand and was known to share many a tall tale, some of which were rumored to be true. His family will remember him as a beloved husband, brother, father and grandfather who was an excellent role model to many, and he will be missed by all who knew him.
In addition to his wife, Glenna, of Ilwaco, he is survived by his children, Debora (Steve) Easton of Carlsbad, Calif., Richard Patana III (Debora) of Chinook, Diela (Steve) Hall of Beaverton, Ore., Linda Claudius of Escondido, Calif., Sharon (Jay) Easton of Julian, Calif., Walter Mathew Patana of Phoenix, Ariz., and Elizabeth (Jason) Norman of Austin, Texas; a brother, Merrit Patana of Prineville, Ore.; 15 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his sister Zoe Schwatzenburg.
A memorial service will be held Thursday, Feb. 24, at 2 p.m., at New Life Christian Church in Ilwaco with a reception following. Private columbarium placement will be at Ilwaco Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Ilwaco Food Bank in care of Penttilas Chapel by The Sea, P.O. Box 417, Long Beach, WA 98631. His guest book is available at www.penttilaschapel.com.