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Longtime resident of Poulsbo, Orion Culver, died July 25, 2014, 91.8% on the way to his reaching his goal to live to a hundred.
He was born in Pierce, Neb. on Sept. 18, 1922, the son of James Carleton Culver and Margaret Witzka. He was orphaned by age 15 and moved to Adams, Minn., to live with his father's sister and her family. He became a beloved member of the family and a good brother to his cousins.
He joined the Navy in November of 1940. After training at Great Lakes, Ill., his first duty station was aboard the USS Saratoga, CV3, and he remained with the flattop until her scuttling at the Bikini atomic bomb test in 1946. Aboard the "Sara" he ran ships stores and laundry and emergency response. After the Sara came duty aboard the General Breckenridge and the General Freeman. Finally, in 1954, his family welcomed time with him at his duty station of Midway Island. After three years in Midway he returned to Bremerton to become head of ship stores at the PSNS Naval Hospital. His final sea duty was aboard the USS Colonial. He retired as a CPO 3 after 20 years of distinguished service.
After retiring from the Navy he entered into Federal Service as a munitions packer at Keyport, ultimately becoming a safety officer for the Keyport Naval Station and Bangor Naval Torpedo Station. He retired in 1983 after 42 years of Federal service.
After retirement he kept active with endless projects, gardening, and volunteering for NARFE and other organizations. He was active in the Saratoga Association and attended most of the annual reunions and was instrumental in hosting a reunion in Bremerton. But his most enjoyable activity (next to Seahawk football!) was being a grandfather to his two grandsons. He was not only a hero to his grandsons, but a lifelong role model.
He was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Bette, who he married in 1947 in Marshalltown, Iowa, and with whom he spent 53 years; and brothers, James and Vern Culver. He is survived by his daughter, Carla Barnes (husband Bob) of Bellevue; and grandsons, Marcus Barnes of Bellevue and Peter Barnes of Spokane; and two great-grandchildren, Taylor and Chance. He is also survived by his beloved companion of 12 years, Ethel Marts of Belfair.
The foundation of his life was honesty, integrity and hard work, and in having fun with family and friends. He was fully engaged in both until the end.
A graveside service will be held Sept. 2, 2014 at 2 p.m. at Poulsbo Mortuary, 22273 Foss Road NE, Poulsbo. Remembrances can be made to the Navy-Marine Relief Society or the charity of your choice.