John David Waters Jr., 88, of Gold Hill, Ore., soared into the sky August 2, 2012. Born in Arkansas April 4, 1924, and raised in the South and California, he deeply loved Oregon. "Johnny" to friends and family, he was wounded on Omaha Beach during the D-Day invasion, was part of the liberation of France, and marched into Berlin. He went on to become a skilled pilot with an intense and dedicated love of flying. A successful businessman, owning and operating several business firms in California, he later became a successful real estate investor.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Betty Cooksey Waters; parents, John David Waters Sr. and Cynthia Josephine Warren Waters; sisters, Dorothy Waters (died in infancy), Martha Walker, and Louise Brown; brothers, Arlice, Ray, Cal, and Don Waters; and infant son, John David Waters III.
He is survived by his brother, Mitchell Waters (Wanda); daughter, Samantha Orduno (Thomas); grandchildren, Anthony Orduno, Tommy Orduno (Cassie), Teisha Orduno, Tinna Orduno (Edgar), and Todd Orduno (Amanda); great-grandchildren, Savannah Orduno, Alex Hernandez, and Sara Hernandez; stepsons, Terry and Darrell Johnson; nephews, David Waters, Michael Waters, Billy Waters, Lee Brown, and Calvin Waters Jr.; nieces, Julia Walker, Cynthia Rogers, Janice Lee, Sherrie Brooks, Michele White, May Waters, and Dawn and Nancy Waters; Cindy Brown Studinger and his extended family of Elvia Pearson, Shirley (Ken) Embler, Pam (Don), Rita (Tommy) Kinsella, Donna Mallory, Ralph Pearson, Velton (June) Lee, and Jim and Phillip Cooksey.
Johnny lived honestly and loved fishing almost as much as flying. Always known for the best life stories that would entertain and educate, he was a man of his word, and a man of integrity with a wonderful sense of humor and enduring style. As his daughter said to him that last day "Fly Daddy fly," and he is.
A celebration of life service will be held September 15, 2012, 2:00 p.m., at his home.