Mountain View - Colonial DeWitt
1551 Dalles Military Road
Walla Walla, WA 99362
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Donald Fredrick Hunerlach

1925 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
In Loving Memory DONALD FREDRICK HUNERLACH April 7, 1925 September 13, 2017 Donald Fredrick Hunerlach was born on April 7th, 1925 to Fredrick and Emily Hunerlach of Red Cloud Nebraska. During the dust bowl at age 10, Don traveled with his family to Chico, CA. Don attended Shasta Union Grade School where he first met Gudrun Marie Hansen, his future wife. He graduated from Chico High School in 1943. Don was inducted into the US Marine Corp on May 27th 1944, in the 6th Marine Division. He and his comrades landed on the beaches of Okinawa, Japan as the fourth wave near Yontan Airfield on Easter morning April 1st, 1945. Don took part in the historic battle for Sugarloaf Hill, which is where he was severely wounded and awarded the Purple Heart. Don's wartime experience shaped the gratitude with which he lived his life from that day forward. Don surprised all of his physicians by walking within a year of his wartime injury. After his recovery he returned to Chico, CA to marry Marie Hansen. They were wed October 27th, 1946. Don worked several farming jobs in the years to come, working with families that would become long time friends: the Andersens, Bertagnas, and Bickleys. In 1955 Don and Marie bought farmland in Vina, CA. Don proceeded to graft an entire orchard of English Walnuts-a technique he helped pioneer-through a program at UC Davis. Don farmed his walnut orchard for over 40 years and loved his time spent there. Don was also a post master for 27 years, serving Corning, Willows, Clear Lake Oaks, Nevada City, Guernville, and Cottonwood. He was a member of both the Los Molinos Unified School District and the Tehama County school district boards. Don was also an active member in 4H, Kiwanis, Elks, and Knights of Columbus. He very much valued his friendships the Trappist monks of New Clairvaux. He partnered with them in prayer and farming. Don and Marie raised three children: John, Donna, and Harold. In 1998 Don and Marie moved to Walla Walla, WA. Marie passed of Alzheimer's shortly after they moved to Walla Walla. Don always found companionship in his German Shepherds, and could be spotted around Walla Walla in his white Dodge pickup with his large and loveable "Chug" in the truck bed. On Veteran's Day 2000, Don married Alma Croman at St. Patrick's Church in Walla Walla. They were happily married for nearly 17 years, and enjoyed gardening and spending time with their families. He was preceded in death by his wife Marie, son Harold, and sister Nathalie Panelli. Don is survived by his wife Alma Hunerlach, son John (Eva) Hunerlach of Rochester, NY, daughter Donna (Joe) Wujek of Walla Walla, WA, stepchildren Steve (Dicki) Wade of Chico, CA, Dan (Dana) Wade of Los Molinos, CA, Candi (Bob) Griffith of Los Molinos, CA, siblings Vernon (Jeanie) Hunerlach of Davis, CA, Mary Hall of Allen, TX, Harold (Vivian) Hunerlach of Loomis, CA, Ron (Midge) Hunerlach of Auburn, CA, 16 grandchildren and 8 great grandchildren. Memorial Contributions may be made to the New Clairvaux Sacred Stones in Vina, CA, the Christian Aid Center in Walla Walla, WA, or the , through Mountain View-Colonial DeWitt, 1551 The Dalles Military Road, Walla Walla, WA 99362. "Well done good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of Our Lord."
Published in Chico Enterprise-Record on Sept. 17, 2017
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