Howard Voien Jr.
Howard’s father, Howard Voien Jr., passed away peacefully on June 19, 2009, just shy of his 86th birthday. When we heard he was failing, we jumped in the car and drove to CA to hopefully see him for the last time. Howard sat with him for 3 days as he struggled and on Friday morning he breathed his last with his children and family at his side.
He was born on July 13, 1923 in Sioux City, Iowa, the 5th of 7 children born to Norwegian-American parents Augusta and Halvor Lars Voien. His family moved to Southern California when he was six years old. He attended grammar school at Gulf Elementary in Wilmington and graduated from Phineas Banning High School in 1941.
After High School worked at Terminal Island painting Liberty Ships and then enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard in 1942. He was assigned beach patrol on horseback in Morro Bay until 1943 when he was selected to attend Radio Operator School and became a radio operator. He received orders to report to SS Freight Supply and served in the Pacific Theater visiting many South Pacific islands providing support for the duration of the war.
He was honorably discharged in 1946. After the war he worked for a short time on a fishing boat off the coasts of Central and South America before going back to school. He entered Woodbury College and received an Associate Arts Degree in Interior Design. He enjoyed a long career in Interior Design in Long Beach as a salesman for draperies and fine furniture.
Howard was a member of the Gloria Dei Lutheran Church and sang in the choir for many years. He made many good friends there who kept him company after his stroke in 2006. His family was the most important thing to him in his life. After his beloved wife of 33 years died he kept busy playing tennis, golf and volunteered at the Los Angeles Maritime Museum in San Pedro working on the Tall Ships.
He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Inez and is survived by his son, Howard Voien III, stepdaughters Gayle Reynolds and Nancy Engelman, three granddaughters, Nycole Bennecke, Lisa Billings, and Angelyn Miracle, seven great-grandchildren and a number of much loved nieces and nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews. He was everyone’s favorite Grandpa, Uncle and friend. Memorial Services were held at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church on Monday June 22, 2009.