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Paul J. Shank

1933 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Paul J. Shank Obituary
November 6, 1933 - September 2, 2016 Lt. Col. Paul J. Shank, USMC (Ret.) was born in McCall, Idaho on November 6, 1933, the son of a U.S. Forester. The forest was an early playground for him, as well as for his younger brother and sister. A decade later, his father began working for the United Fruit Company in Honduras in Central America, where Paul learned to speak Spanish. He moved to Texas for high school and graduated from Rice University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, the first of four college degrees he would obtain, including a bachelor's, two master's, and a doctorate. During his summers, he worked as a part-time surveyor. After college, he joined the United States Marine Corps, so he could travel the world. During his 25 years as an officer in the USMC, he won a gold medal in the 1963 Pan Am Games in Sao Paulo, Brazil for the 50-Meter Free Pistol Team event. He was a veteran of the Vietnam War, built part of the Chu Lai airport and part of the Ho Chi Minh trail and bridges. After he retired from the Marine Corps, he worked as a Systems Engineer at TRW in the South Bay. He retired at 65 and enjoyed playing tennis three times a week and taking long walks. He also had a private pilot license and enjoyed flying around Southern California and running marathons. He met his wife, Connie Usuki, in Monterey, California. Together they have two children, a daughter, Naomi, and a son, James, a daughter-in-law, Michelle, and two grandchildren, Katia and Jed. He and Connie were married for 56 years. He was 82 years old when he died on September 2, 2016 of heart failure, a longtime resident of Torrance. He was a true gentleman, liked by everyone and loved by his family, and he had a heart of gold. Please do not send flowers or a donation. He was a private man and wished to have a private service with only family around him. Goodbye my love, until we meet again, Connie.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Sept. 30 to Oct. 2, 2016
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