Douglas Martin King was born to Vernie Viola Taylor King and William Oliver King Oct. 7, 1929 in Claremore, Okla. He was the fourth of nine children—eight boys and one girl.
Doug lost his father in a mining accident when he was 15. He was very close to his father and identified with the “cowboy” activities he learned from his dad throughout his life. His ever-present cowboy hat was central to the image family and friends will remember. His mother died several years later of cancer.
Doug joined the United States Air Force at 18 and served for 20 years, retiring in May of 1968. While stationed in South Dakota he met the love of his life, Evelyn Maxine Stratton. They were married Nov. 26, 1950. Doug and Evelyn had three children—Marjorie Kay (Mara), Kirk Douglas and Peggy Diane.
During his Air Force career Doug worked in civil engineering, including heavy equipment, refrigeration, missiles and liquid oxygen which prepared him for his subsequent career as maintenance operations manager at hospitals in Boulder, Colo., and Greenville, Tenn. He then spent many years as a self-employed heavy equipment contractor and over-the-road tractor trailer driver.
Doug and his wife, Evelyn, moved to Port Orchard, Wash., four years ago. He was a resident in the Washington State Veterans Home-Retsil for the past two years.
Doug, formerly of Pringle, S.D., died Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018 with his wife of 68 years and three children at his bedside. He was 89.
He was preceded in death by his siblings, Bill, Emmett, Harold, Orville, Patricia, Jimmy Joe Bob, Michael and George (who died as an infant).
Doug is survived by his wife, Evelyn; daughter, Mara LeGrand; son, Kirk (Kathy) King, and Peggy (Joel McCulloch) King; six grandchildren, Jeremy and Justyn Baker, Katie and Matthew King, Douglas and Nicholas McCulloch; and two great-grandsons, James and Ryman Baker.
A memorial service will be held at the Bremerton, Wash., Seventh-Day Adventist Christian Church, at 2 p.m. Feb. 16.
Donations can made in lieu of flowers to Washington State Veterans Home-Retsil.