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Milton Olsen

1930 - 2019
Milton Olsen Obituary
Milton Olsen
February 21, 1930 - September 20, 2019
'Milt' Olsen was born on February 21, 1930, and passed away Friday, September 20, 2019, at the age of 89, with his children and grandchildren by his side after succumbing to cancer, a glioblastoma brain tumor.
Milt was the oldest of Joseph and Naomi Olsen's 5 children and grew up in Mendon and Young Ward, Utah. During the Great Depression, he helped his parents raise herds of turkeys from a very young age, for the US Army. Milt graduated from South Cache High School in 1948 and served as a full time 2 year LDS missionary to the Great Lakes Mission from 1950-52. After completing his mission he joined the Army ROTC unit at USU. Milt graduated from ROTC and Utah State with a degree in Business.
He was commissioned in the US Army as an officer, and went to pilot training. He was ready to see the world, starting a flying career that lasted half a century. In the military, he flew helicopters and fixed wing planes, earning the rank of Captain and even took on the daring role of test pilot.
During the Vietnam War Milt flew for the CIA's "Air America". Their motto was "Anything, Anytime, Anywhere, Professionally". He took this motto to heart. He was known as "Old Reliable" as he never turned down a mission and logged more flight time than nearly all of his peers.
In 1970, Milt married Sherry Mitchell. Their marriage lasted nearly 40 years and they had 2 children, Scott Olsen and Holly (Olsen) Daly. After returning to the US, Milt flew for the Forest Service and Bonneville Power until 2005. He kept in touch with his earlier life through Air America reunions, including the 2006 Return to Southeast Asia Reunion in Bangkok, Thailand. Living stateside, he pursued his other great passions outside of family and flying: golf and tennis. An avid player of both sports, Milt lived on a golf course near Phoenix, AZ, during retirement where he hit his last of four hole-in-ones at the age of 85.
Milt is survived by his two sisters, Ruth Stewart, Jane Langer, brother, Joseph Henry "Hank" Olsen III, his two children and their spouses: Scott and Lynda Olsen and Doug and Holly (Olsen) Daly, and 4 grandchildren: Morgan Olsen, Sabine Daly, Calvin Daly, and Finnegan Daly. He was preceded in death by his brother Franklin Olsen and his granddaughter Chloe Daly. A funeral service will be held on Friday, October 11th in Portland, Oregon, then internment at Willamette National Cemetery.
Condolences may be sent to Ruth Olsen Stewart at: Terrace Grove Assisted Living, 345 North 200 West, Logan, UT, 84321.
Or on the tribute wall at: www.riverviewcemeteryfuneralhome.com.
Published in Logan Herald Journal on Oct. 10, 2019
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