Dedicated to the Preservation of the
U.S. Air Force Helicopter History
Bruce F. DeHaas, 1st Lt., USAFMay 27, 1929 – November 04, 2014
Bruce F. DeHaas, age 85, of 106 Church St., Wyalusing, PA (formerly of California City, CA) passed away peacefully at his home Tuesday morning, November 4, 2014 after battling leukemia and lymphoma for 30 years.
Bruce was born on May 27, 1929 in Marquette, MI the son of the late Eugene and Jean Mason DeHaas.
He was a graduate of University High School class of 1948 in Los Angeles, CA. He later attended UCLA and Cal-Berkley as a civil engineering major but left college prior to the end of his final semester to serve his country during the Korean Conflict in the US Air Force as a fighter jet and helicopter pilot until his discharge in 1956 having attained the rank of First Lieutenant.
After his military service, Bruce flew helicopters for LA Airways until the late 1950’s. He then went on to become one of the founders of SFO Airlines, a helicopter airline that operated out of San Francisco and Oakland, CA. Bruce retired from flying in 1976 with over 23,000 hours in the air.
Bruce lived in many parts of California, including Los Angeles and the Bay area. He and his wife Earlene, whom he married on January 9, 1968 moved to California City in the Mojave Desert. There he built and maintained a beautiful home and tinkered with various cars, motorcycles, and dirt bikes (and maybe a dune buggy here or there). He came out of retirement and worked into his 80’s with the Honda Motor Company to test drive cars and motorcycles and was given the “One Million Mile Safety Award” for his skills in driving.
He is survived by his wife, Earlene A. DeHaas of Wyalusing, PA; children Louis Douglas Germann and his wife Melanie of Phoenix, AZ, Denise Ann Lakner of Pleasanton, CA, and Jean Elizabeth Woodruff and her husband Christopher of Wyalusing, PA; his grandchildren Stephanie Lord and her husband Bradley of Tucson, AZ, Jennifer Lakner of Pleasanton, CA, Adam Woodruff of Wyalusing, PA, Aaron Woodruff of Wyalusing, PA and Matthew Woodruff of Wyalusing, PA; his brother Kenneth DeHaas of Ashland, OR; as well as many nieces and nephews. Besides his parents he was preceded in death by his first wife Marjean VanBlaricom, his brother David DeHaas, and his son-in-law Marc Lakner.
A memorial service will be held at a later date at the convenience of the family. Arrangements were entrusted with Sheldon Funeral Homes, 155 Church St., Wyalusing, PA. Online condolences may be made at www.sheldonfuneralhomes.com.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made in Bruce’s name to the Bradford County Relay for Life, c/o Amy Huffman-PS Bank, PO Box 217, Wyalusing, PA 18853.
~ GUEST BOOK ~
December 22, 2014 12:14 AMWe just happened across this announcement today. Very sorry to hear of Bruce’s passing. He was a great pilot, an excellent manager, and a wonderfully positive, calm, and kind human being. On top of all those qualities he was a handsome guy who in his pilot uniform looked as if he came right out of central casting. But I don’t think he ever noticed that. He just wanted to do a really professional job and I think he certainly succeeded. R.I.P. Bruce may God Bless you and yours. Jerry Peters, at SFOH 1962-1970, as Station Agent, Maintenance Records Mgr., Station Manager, Dir. of Customer Service, and Stockholder.~Jerry Peters Novato, CA
November 23, 2014 1:17 PMEarlene and family, I am so sadden to hear of Bruce’s passing. I have such fond memories of him and Earlene at the California City Police Dept. He was such a smart, kind gentleman, he will be missed by many.~Linda Lunsford, California City, CA
November 15, 2014 11:29 PMDear DeHaas family, I just learned of Bruce’s passing. I worked with Bruce at SFO Helicopter. I wanted to send my heartfelt condolences to you all. He was a great guy and I always felt safe when he was in command of the helicopter. He will be dearly missed. Lori Lind Ziegler~Lori Ziegler, Reno, NV
November 15, 2014 10:15 PMI worked with Bruce at SFO Helicopter in the 70’s. He was a very pleasant gentleman. Janet Storm formerly Heaney Flight Attendant.~Janet C. Storm, Citrus Heights, CA
November 15, 2014 6:46 PMBruce DeHass was a good man and a professional pilot. He was a good friend and I always enjoyed the days that we flew together, Chris Miller.~Chris and Marty Miller, Pleasanton, CA
November 15, 2014 6:37 PMChristian J. Miller III has sent this Expressions of Sympathy card.~Christian J. Miller III
November 15, 2014 6:03 PMTom Sceurman has sent this Expressions of Sympathy card.~Tom Sceurman
November 13, 2014 8:07 AMDear DeHaas Family I was saddened to hear of your losing Bruce in death. It’s troublesome to think about how much talent and abilities are gone through Bruce and no doubt the affection he carried for you all? I do hope that the promises found in God’s word the Bible at John 5:28, 29 and Ps. 37: 11, 29 will bring you comfort. Yes, to know for sure that you will once again be united with Bruce and enjoy the real life that Jehovah God had originally intended can bring us tears of joy. May you continue to keep those promises close at heart until that glorious time comes.~Mike Arrowood, Laceyville, Pa.
November 7, 2014 7:18 PMSher Audette Shepherd has sent this Expressions of Sympathy card.~Sher Audette Shepherd
November 6, 2014 8:46 AMEarlene, children & grandchildren, We are so sorry to receive this e-mail but not surprised. Our prayers are with you today and in the days to come. He fought this battle so long and so well. We are happy to have been a part of his life for the past years. Earlene, he worked hard and diligently to get you moved to family before he made HIS move to his eternal home. His suffering is over and he has finished well. We love you all.~Paul & Erma, Astor, Fla.