David C. VanLiew, 89, went to be with his Lord and Savior Dec. 30, 2012. David was born March 14, 1923 in Okanogan, Wash., and lived in Okanogan until moving to East Wenatchee last year. He was a proud graduate of Washington State University, earning his degree in history. After graduation, he joined the U.S. Navy and served in the Pacific during World War II. After the war, David left active Naval service but remained a member of the Naval reserves, retiring as a Lieutenant in the 1970s with over 20 years of military service.
After the war, David worked for the U.S. Forest Service. During the course of his duties with the Forest Service, he came upon two people involved in an accident and saved them by heroically pulling them from the wreckage. David was a jack of all trades and found success working as a businessman, maintenance worker, and orchardist. He retired as an employee of Okanogan County in the 1970s. Although David was skilled in a variety of occupations, his true calling was public service.
Both as a Navy officer and as an active member of many civic and fraternal organizations, David was committed to serving his country and his community. He was post commander for the Okanogan American Legion, was a loyal Mason and Shriner, was active in 40/8, and a member of the Episcopal Church. His selfless and charitable ways also extended to members of his family for whom he provided security and created opportunities when they were in need.
David loved to read about history and always kept up on news and politics. He was a man of strong convictions and an ardent believer in democracy and equality. He was always game for a spirited debate, well-informed about the issues of the day, and had an unequaled grasp on their context in history.
He is preceded in death by his father, William VanLiew; and his mother, Mabel VanLiew. He is survived by a sister, Josephine Fancher of Omak; niece, Janice Fancher of East Wenatchee; nephews, Jon Fancher of West Richland and Bill Fancher of Okanogan; and numerous grand- and great-grand nieces and nephews.
Funeral services were at 10 a.m., Saturday Jan. 5, 2012, at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church in Omak. A graveside with military honors immediately followed at Okanogan Valley Memorial Gardens. Afterwards, a reception celebrating David’s life reconvened at St. Anne’s. In lieu of flowers, please make donations in David’s name to the Okanogan County Shrine Club, 111 Eastlake Road, Oroville, WA 98844.
Precht-Harrison-Nearents Chapel is caring for the arrangements.