Orville L. Dihel

Orville L. Dihel passed away Saturday, April 21, 2018 in Ellensburg, Washington and is now singing with the angels!

Orville was born in Rising City, Nebraska, the youngest of five children. The first thirteen years were spent farming on a large farm with his father and three brothers. This was during the drought when everything turned to dust. They were forced to move off the farm because they could not grow the crops due to the lack of rain. The family sold everything and decided to move west. They came to a fork in the road to go to either California or Washington. His dad flipped a coin. Heads would be Washington, tails California. The coin came up heads and the family moved to Yakima, Washington.

Orville turned thirteen at their new home in Yakima. He graduated from Yakima High School (now Davis High) in 1941. Because his father died before he graduated, Orville began working picking fruit and hops around Moxee. During the early fall he followed the crops up to Orville, Washington. He finished school while working to help support the family.

After graduation Orville began working at the Safeway Store learning to cut meat as a butcher. He worked until he entered the military for three years. He served in the Army Air Corps with two of the three years in the North Pacific (Aleutian Islands). Returning home after WWII he went back from Safeway as a butcher. He worked in Toppenish and Yakima before being promoted to meat department Manager in Grandview, Washington. He worked in Grandview for three years where his son Donald Dihel was born. He was promoted again to a larger volume store in Ellensburg, Washington where his daughter Vicki (Dihel) Hobbs was born. He managed this meat department in the Ellensburg store for over 35 years. All total he worked for Safeway for 43 ½ years.

Orville loved fishing and hunting nearly as well as he loved life itself. He spent many days fishing and hunting with friends and family. He could be found later in life stilling by a pond teaching on his grandchildren or great grandchildren how to bait a hook or net a fish. Singing and telling jokes to pass the time.

Orville was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers and one sister, and his first love, Betty (Stricker) whom he married in Toppenish, Washington in 1945. She passed away in 1975.

In 1979 he met the second love of his life, Nancy (Morrison). He was blessed to have two wonderful women in his life as well as inheriting a great second family, Nancy’s three daughters, Patricia Robbins, Geri Rosenow and Barbara Cummiford. He has many grandchild, great grandchildren and great great grandchildren. He was very proud of them all.

After retirement in August of 1985 he and Nancy began traveling around the USA. They traveled in a camper, then a 5th wheel and finally a motor home. They crossed both borders and traveled from the Pacific to the Atlantic. They spent the summer in Yakima and winters were spent in south Texas, Arizona, California or anywhere it was warm. They traveled until 2007 when Nancy became ill and she passed in 2010. Orville then moved back to Ellensburg to live with his daughter.

Orville was a lifetime member of the Moose Lodge #494 where he was an active member while he lived Ellensburg. He and Nancy especially loved to dance at the Moose.

Orville is survived by many loving members of both families all of whom he loved greatly.

He wishes to say Bon Voyage to all his many great friends, family and acquaintances, especially his beloved coffee club at McDonalds.

A graveside service will be held at the IOOF Cemetery in Ellensburg, Washington on Saturday, May 12th at 11 am and a Celebration of his life immediately following.

In lieu of flowers a donation in honor of Orville can be made to the Disabled American Veterans (DAV), Honor Flight Network or charity of your choice.