Irons, Earlene G.

Earlene G. Irons

Earlene G. Irons passed away on January 15, 2023, after a brief illness. Earl was born on May 5, 1930, in the town of Painesville, Ohio to Walter and Martha Irons. Earl was the eldest of four siblings.

When growing up in Painesville, Earl often played hockey on Lake Erie, played football, basketball and baseball. He graduated from Harvey High School where he said his claim to fame was playing football for a then unknown Don Shula. After graduation, Earl had the opportunity to attend Arizona State University where he was planning on studying accounting but opted to serve his country and instead, enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1948.

During Earl’s service to his country, he served in Korea and Vietnam Conflicts. In 1953, he was assigned to go to Hollywood where he and several other crew members brought and maintained a helicopter that was featured in the movie “Flight Nurse” that starred Joan Leslie and Forrest Tucker.

When Earl was stationed at Hamilton Air Force Base in Petaluma, CA, he met the love of his life, Patricia Soucie. They were married in Carson City, Nevada in 1952. Earl and Pat had two children, a son, Edward, and daughter, Gail. While in the Air Force the family lived in California, Texas, Guam, Illinois and Wyoming. Earl was trained as a helicopter mechanic. In 1963, he was chosen to help maintain the Minuteman Missiles in Wyoming. Earl spent 20 years in the U.S. Air Force retiring in 1968 after a tour in Vietnam, stationed in Da Nang where he served as crew chief of the Jolly Green Giants. He and the rest of his crew made sure that the helicopters were ready to go at a moment’s notice.

After retiring from the Air Force, Earl was a mechanic for several car dealerships in Lodi. He and Pat enjoyed their retirement years by RVing, traveling to many places and meeting many wonderful people on their journeys. They were active in several clubs including the Good Sam’s Club, FMCA, SMART and several other RV groups. Earl continued to RV with these groups until several years ago. He loved playing golf and listening to his Polka music.

Earl is preceded in death by his parents, Walter and Martha, his wife Patricia, his siblings, Rita, Ina and Eric. He is survived by his son, Edward (Jan), of LaPine, Oregon, his daughter Gail of Lodi, grandson Clint (Janette) of Lodi, grandson James (Oyuki) of Orland, granddaughter Phadie of Corning, great-grandson, Brighton of Chico and great-granddaughter, Katherine of Orland plus many nieces and nephews.

Graveside services will be held on May 1, 2023, beginning at 1:30 p.m. at Lodi Cemetery (5750 East Pine Street, Lodi). A gathering to celebrate Earl’s life will be held afterwards at Emanuel Lutheran Church (1540 W. Lodi Avenue, Lodi).

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to your favorite charity. Published by Lodi-News Sentinel from Apr. 28 to May 5, 2023


Earl served in the U. S. Air Force as a helicopter mechanic and served a tour in the Vietnam War with the 37th ARRS at Da Nang AB, RVN.

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