Martin H. Heiss
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Feb 28, 1932 - Jan 14, 2014
Martin "Marty" Hans Heiss, 81, of Atwater, CA passed away quietly in Bakersfield, CA the morning of January 14, 2014 with his only son and daughter-in-law holding his hands. He was a loving father and grandfather and is already greatly missed.
Marty was born in Long Beach CA, the son of German immigrants and sole brother to 4 sisters. He grew up in the Los Angeles area where scouting was a big part of his childhood. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout at Troop 32 in 1948. He graduated from Venice High School in 1950 and went on to join the Air Force in 1952. He served one tour of duty in Korea as a B-29 gunner and went on to serve 4 tours of duty in Viet Nam as a boom operator on the KC-135. He was part of an elite group of aviators who perfected hard-boom refueling and this greatly contributed to the capability of of the US Air Force during the Cold War.
In 1956 he married Georgia A (Annie) Baxter and was blessed with two children, Karri and Greg and they made their home together at various SAC bases in the US until his retirement from the Air Force in 1976 at Castle AFB where he concluded his 24 year military career as an in-flight refueling instructor with the 4017th CCTS.
He gave selflessly to all he knew and was active in Scouting into adulthood, serving as Scoutmaster for Troop 94 in Atwater, CA for many years. He was an active past Elder at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Atwater. He loved fishing, traveling with his 5th wheel and was a faithful Dale Earnhardt (both Senior and Junior) fan and was a NASCAR enthusiast most all of his life. In recent years his four grandchildren, who loved and adored their "Grampy" brought much joy to his life, and he to theirs.
Marty was preceded in death by his youngest Sister Christine in 1997 and by his loving wife Annie in 2008, then shortly afterward by his daughter Karri in the same year. He mourned their losses each day, but is now reunited with them in Heaven.
He is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Greg and Lynne Roth Heiss of Bakersfield, CA, grandchildren, Megan (Heiss) and husband Jared Eskew, currently of Goodyear, AZ, Matthew Heiss of Fresno, CA, and Mariel Heiss and Madelynne Heiss of Bakersfield, CA. He also leaves behind sister Sigrid Kinyon of Eureka, CA, twin sister Elisabeth Kutchinski of Thousand Oaks, CA and sister Karin Hubby and brother-in-law Skip, of Murrieta, CA. along with numerous nieces, nephews, extended family, neighbors and friends who enriched his life over the years.
Military Rites and Internment will be held February 7, 2014 at 2:30 PM at San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery, Santa Nella, CA. Pastor Tim Francisco, formally of Holy Cross Lutheran church will officiate. Celebration of life immediately following at Pea Soup Andersen restaurant, Santa Nella CA.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in his honor to the
Published in Merced Sun Star from Feb. 1 to Feb. 3, 2014