Wilfred Almond Sumner
Wilfred “Bill” Almond Sumner passed away on Friday, August 12, 2016 in Dallas, Texas. He was born June 30, 1924 in Alameda, California to Charles and Marguerita Sumner.
After graduating from Hayward High School in June 1942, Bill enlisted in the U.S. Navy. During WWII, he served on the Destroyer DD 364 Mahan which was sunk December 7, 1944 on Ormoc Bay, Leyte Philippines. In 1947, he enrolled in the University of Nevada, Reno with a major of Range Management and USAF ROTC. In January 1948, he took a semester off to work in Alaska exploring for oil in the Arctic Naval Oil Reserve #4. While attending UNR, he met fellow student Rhoma Jane Mitchell and married her on July 1, 1950 in Sonoma, Ca.
Bill was called up for the Korean War in April 1951 by the Army Air Corp. ROTC as a reservist, completed Navigator/EW training for the B26 and was stationed in Seoul. After the Korean War, he was reassigned to SAC USAF and flew the newest bomber B52 out of Altus AFB in Oklahoma. In 1965, he was flying missions for the “Cold War” with Russia, and training Navigators/EW Officers for bombing runs over Vietnam out of Castle AFB in California. In 1967, he was promoted to Lt. Colonel and assigned to the 343 Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron in Shemya, Alaska.
After his retirement from the Air Force in 1970, Bill worked for the U.S. Postal Service in North Lake Tahoe from 1973 to 1990. He also joined the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in June 1986 and retired in November 6, 2004 as a Flotilla Commander. He lived in Tahoe City from 1971 to 2004.
Bill was a dedicated soldier to his country, a loving husband to both Rhoma Jane and Mary Lou, and a loving father to his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. He enjoyed spending time with family members especially when fishing at Tahoe, Alaska and Mexico.
He is survived by his second wife, Mary Lou Jones Sumner of Dallas, Texas, his children Linda Sievers, Jane Fergason, Wil Sumner and Carlie Hatt; seven grandchildren Jennifer Harmon, Laurie Bayramian, Steve Fergason, Russell Fergason, Skiffington Sumner, Jeannette Sumner, Rebecca Hatt and 11 great grandchildren. Bill is also survived by his sister Fran Trachok of Reno, Nevada and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Rhoma Jane Mitchell Sumner and twin brother Robert Sumner.
A celebration of Bill’s life will be held at the Hidden Valley Country Club, Reno, Nevada, September 11, 2016. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Red Cross or contribute to a favorite charity. RSVPs and condolences to the family may be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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