Capt. Donald J. Worley, retired, 86, took his last flight after a brief illness, Nov. 12, 2012, at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Lewiston.
Don enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1944 at age 16 and 9 months. He served in the Philippines in World War II. After his honorable discharge in 1946, he used his G.I. Bill to further his education and flight training. He spent the next 38 years as a commercial airline pilot.
His love for aviation was evident in the many stories he told about his flying experiences. He had the ability to engage his family and friends with passion as he expounded on his many adventures. These stories resulted in a published autobiography, “Into the Wind.”
Don enjoyed a number of sports and hobbies, including hunting, fishing, tennis, golf, water and snow skiing, sailing and scuba diving. His most recent passion was deer and elk hunting, bagging his last elk at age 85.
Don and his wife, Arlene, moved to her native area of Lewiston nine years ago. His favorite saying was “The best move we ever made.”
He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Arlene (Maynard); brother, Tom of Laughlin, Nev.; daughters, Cheryl Packer (Dave) of Bullhead City, Ariz., Donna Myers (Ray) of Maple Valley, Wash., Barbara Rock of Tacoma and Laura Worley of Anderson Island, Wash.; son, Doug Worley (Becky) of Woodland, Calif.; stepsons, Bryce Tumelson (Janet) and Jeff Tumelson, all of Lewiston; 14 grandchildren; and 22 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Jack; and great-grandson, Timothy.
He was loved by many and will truly be missed.
A celebration of life will be held at 3:59 p.m. Saturday at the Lewiston Roundup Ketch Pen. In lieu of flowers, donations of your choice may be made in his honor.Don was born Aug. 26, 1926, in Omaha, Neb., to Monica McGuire Worley and John L. Worley. The family moved to Van Nuys, Calif., in the late 1930s.