Feb. 15, 1922 — July 7, 2018
Roger J. Dunnington, 96, of Kelso passed away July 7, 2018, at home.
He was born Feb. 15, 1922, in Talent, Ore., to Clinton Brian and Erminia Katharine (Rosa) Dunnington. He grew up on an uncle’s farm in Jacksonville, Ore., and his Grandmother Rosa’s Farm around Salinas Valley, Calif.
Roger enlisted in the Army Air Force at age 17. He was a staff sergeant and a B-24 tail gunner with the 389th Bomb Group. During World War II, it was shot down over Prussia. He parachuted, was captured and held over a year in German POW camp Stalag Luft 4 and forced German prisoner Black March.
After his liberation, Roger returned to California and attended 2 years at UC Davis. He decided to return to and bicycle through Europe where a US army buddy stationed in Germany, introduced him to his secretary, Rosa Sophie Seis. He and Rosa were married in Cologne, Germany in 1950. He built a seven bedroom home in Kelso, where they raised their seven children. Roger lived there until his death as was his wish.
Roger had a strong work ethic. He owned and operated The Cinebar Restaurant in Langley Prairie, B.C., in the early 1950s, was an Oregon state dairy inspector, a local delivery truck driver for Troy Laundry, and retired after 25 years as a papermaker at Longview Fibre Company.
Roger was a lifelong member of Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, a member of Knights of Columbus, Legion of Mary, FISH, and an original administrator and past treasurer of the local farmer’s market. He enjoyed gardening, tending his fruit orchard and volunteering. He visited the sick, and even asked nursing home staff who in their facility rarely had visitors. Roger never met a stranger, and could strike up a conversation with anyone, any time.
He is survived by his wife, Rosa Dunnington at home; his seven children, Ralph Dunnington of Portland, Raymond Dunnington of Beaverton, Ore., Rebecca Storm (Bernie) of Chehalis, Wash., Ruth Klopp (Joel) of Kelso, Roger Dunnington (Theresa) of Ewa Beach, Hawaii; Rosemary Eden (Charlie) of Longview, and Russell Dunnington of St. Helens, Ore.; two siblings, James Dunnington of Lewiston, Maine; and Vivian Boley of Boring, Ore.; 11 grandchildren; and 13 great-grandchildren.
A rosary is planned for 10:30 a.m. and a funeral Mass for 11 a.m. Wednesday at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, 2200 Allen St., in Kelso. Father Brian Ochs will officiate. A reception will follow at the church.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Community Home Health & Hospice, P.O. Box 2067, Longview, WA 98632.