Merlin Thorkelson

  • "It was an honor to have known Merlin. My sympathies to his..."
    - Pam Costin
  • "I was so sorry to hear of Uncle Merlin's passing. He was..."
    - Viki (Thorkelson) Harber
  • "We are so sorry for your loss. May God give the comfort and..."
    - The Fennell Family

Merlin Thorkelson
1931 ~ 2018
Merlin Thorkelson passed away on August 5, 2018 in Chico, CA at the age of 86. Born in Turlock, CA, in 1931, he is survived by his wife Judith Birch-Thorkelson, daughter Carole Thorkelson-Dompe (Tom), son Jerry Thorkelson (Kathy), son Clay Thorkelson (Pam), five grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. He is also survived by two step-children, Catherine Birch and Michael Birch and three stepgrandchildren.
Merlin was a graduate of Patterson High School and attended Modesto Junior College. He was a veteran serving in the Air Force during the Korean War. Upon returning to the Patterson area from Korea, he began farming and did so for over fifty years specializing in growing tomatoes and numerous other row crops. He was a member of the California Tomato Advisory Board, serving as Vice-President for one term. He was also involved in many other agriculture-related organizations. Merlin was a long term member and past president of the Patterson Lion's Club.
He was preceded in death by his parents Harold and Violet Thorkelson of Patterson, sister Ardyce Hedlind and brothers Delwyn and Ronald Thorkelson.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, September 16, 2018, 1:00 pm, at the Dompe residence, Crows Landing, CA.
A private graveside service to be scheduled at a later date.
Memorial donations may be made to the Patterson Lion's Club, PO Box 452, Patterson, CA 95363

Funeral Home
Salas Brothers Funeral Chapel Inc
419 Scenic Dr
Modesto, CA 95350
(209) 523-5646
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Published in the Modesto Bee on Aug. 12, 2018
bullet Korean War bullet U.S. Air Force