Robert Lee Urling
Nov. 18, 1931-June 27, 2014
Resident of Santa Cruz
Robert L. Urling, a resident of Santa Cruz since 1998, passed away at his home of congestive heart failure on June 27, 2014 with his wife, daughter and granddaughter, Jessica, by his side. He was 82. He was born in Council Bluffs, Iowa on November 18, 1931, the son of Claude Lee Urling and Wilma (Dedmore)
Urling. He grew up in Council Bluffs, where he was a graduate of Creighton Prep. Catholic High School. He later earned an Associate's Degree.
In 1951, Robert enlisted in the U.S. Navy
and began flight training in Pensacola, Florida, and specialized in night-only, all-weather and heavy weapons missions on the carrier. He was stationed in Fallon, NV, Hawaii and Japan. As a commissioned officer he reenlisted in 1954 serving as a fighter pilot in Fighter Squadron 23, stationed at Moffett Field, in Mountain View, CA. He was last assigned to the Heavy Attack Squadron 4 and was stationed at the Pacific Fleet Air Intelligence Training Center, U.S. Naval Air Station, Alameda, CA. During his Naval career, Robert flew many dangerous night missions, involving difficult weather situations. Following his military service, Robert was employed (25 years) at Lockheed Missiles and Space Company in Sunnyvale in the Research and Development Division. During his tenure at Lockheed, he was commissioned to be one of only two test astronauts at Lockheed, for the moon mission conducting all astronaut and moon mission simulations and tests, as deemed by NASA. Additionally during this time, he met Anna Dietz, and the couple married in December 1963 and resided in Los Altos, CA.
He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Anna Marie Urling; daughter, Victoria Anne Hanson; four grandchildren, Jeffrey Robert Hanson, Jessica Anne Hanson, Jamey David Bethard and Cassandra Lynn Bethard; and his niece, Merrily Nelson. He is also survived by six great grandchildren. Robert was preceded in death by his daughter, Deborah Jean Bethard, in 1988, his mother, Wilma Urling in 1991, and
his former wife and mother of Victoria and Deborah, Judith Anne Urling in 2004.
A graveside service will be held at Santa Cruz Memorial Park, 1927 Ocean St., Santa Cruz, CA on Tuesday July 8, 2014 at 2:00 pm. Arrangements are under the direction of Benito and Azzaro Pacific Gardens Chapel. Please visit www.pacificgardenschapel.com
to light a candle or express your condolences to
In lieu of flowers contributions may be sent to Heartland Hospice of Santa Cruz, 824 Bay Ave., Capitola, CA 95010, or to