Vernon Hugh Worden

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Vernon Hugh Worden, age 84, of Fresno passed away on Friday, February 13, 2004, after a brief illness. Mr. Worden was born in Oilton, OK, on December 20, 1919, to Hugh and Viola Worden. He participated in scouting and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. After graduating from Seminole High School, he attended Oklahoma State College and married Ms. Dorothy Carruth in 1940. He went to work for Lockheed Aircraft in Glendale, CA as a member of their engineering department's aircraft design team. He is most proud of his assisting in the development of the Constellation airliner. Vernon enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1943, and served as a flight engineer on a B-29 Superfortress in the South Pacific Theater. In addition to many military missions, he participated in numerous flight tests, several of which established world records for altitude and endurance. He also flew as part of General Curtis Lemay's aircraft. After the birth of his son Royce and his honorable discharge from the military, Mr. Worden entered mortuary school in San Francisco. In 1947, he graduated from the San Francisco School of Mortuary Science, and two months later his daughter Vallory "Vicki" was born. He subsequently established his home in Chowchilla, was blessed with the birth of daughter Loretta, and founded the Worden Funeral Chapels in Chowchilla and Atwater. Vernon "Digger" Worden was in the funeral business for over 40 years and was widely respected for his professionalism, caring attitude, and civic responsibility. In 1964, he married Maxine Bear. Their marriage of 40 years was a testament to the power of Christian love and commitment to each other. Mr. Worden was a mem ber of the Chowchilla Baptist Church, the Chowchilla Masonic Lodge, the Tehran Temple of the Scottish Rite, the Order of Eastern Star, VFW, American Legion, and the Chowchilla Lions Club. In addition to numerous civic awards over the years, in 2001, Vernon was honored with a "Unique Citizen's Award" by the Chowchilla Chamber of Com- merce and presented with recognition scrolls from the California State Assembly, State Senate, and the United States Congress. Mr. Worden had a life-long interest in aviation and owned several airplanes in which he traveled throughout the U.S. and Mexico. Vernon's interest in travel took him to a majority of countries in the world. Mr. Worden had an abiding love for his country, his community, and his family. His generosity, warmth and good cheer will be greatly missed by his family and all those whose lives he touched over the years. Mr. Worden is survived by his wife Maxine; sister, Evelyn Jones of Denver, CO; son, Royce Worden of Sacramento; daughter, Vallory Conkle of Los Gatos; daughter, Loretta Hicks of Clovis; son, Donald Bear of Grants Pass, OR; and daughter, Darlene Waters of New York City. Mr. Worden had six grandsons, Gavin, Brian, David, Ian, Kyle, and Garrett; five granddaughters, Jennifer, Kathleen, Elizabeth, Katelyn, and Julie; and two great-granddaughters, Grace and Violet. Visitation will be held at Worden Funeral Chapel on Thursday, February 19, 2004, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. and again on Friday morning, February 20, 2004, 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. A Funeral Service will be held at First Baptist Church of Chowchilla, 717 W. Robertson Blvd. in Chowchilla on Friday, February 20, 2004, at 1:00 p.m. Interment will follow at Chowchilla District Cemetery. Remembrances may be made to First Baptist Church of Chowchilla, 717 W. Robertson Blvd., Chowchilla, CA 93610 or to the Shriner's Hospital, of donor's choice. JAY CHAPEL In Madera since 1893(559) 674-8814
Funeral Home
Jay Chapel Funeral Directors
1121 Roberts Avenue Madera, CA 93637
(559) 674-8814
Funeral Home Details
Published in the Fresno Bee on Feb. 18, 2004
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