CALL 509-925-3141  •  24 HOURS A DAY

MSgt. John M.H. Horton, USAF (Ret.)

08/07/1934 - 5/20/2019
U.S. Veteran
Service Details
Funeral services will be held at the Mercer Creek Church at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 1, 2019 followed by a committal at IOOF Cemetery with full military honors.
John Malcomb Harvey Horton, 84, went to be with the Lord on May 20, 2019. He was born August 7, 1934 in Burnsville, North Carolina to Noble Gilbert and Lois Irene Phoenix Horton. He was their first born and only son. When John was 6 months old, his parents moved the family west to a dryer climate for the sake of his paternal grandmother who was residing with them. They ended their journey in Phoenix, Arizona where they added three girls to the family - Dorcus Byrd, Dorothy May and Bertha Lee.

John joined the Navy in November 1951 with his Mom’s signature and served as a Boilers Mate on the USS Okanogan. While in the Navy, he met Theresa Lillian Fitzwater. Together they had 4 children, John Wayne, Guy Kenny, Randall Gilbert and Carol Lynn. After one 4-year tour in the Navy, John returned to civilian life, but only for 6 months as he joined the United States Air Force in June 1956. He would remain in the Air Force until June 1973, retiring at Ellsworth AFB, Rapid City, South Dakota. Throughout his military career he served only in the Pacific Ocean and in the US proper.

While stationed at K.I. Sawyer AFB, John met his very best friend and love of his life Lula “Lu” E. Tyler. They would spend the next 48 ½ years together. Lu had two young sons he would raise, Michael Anthony and Phillip Joseph and their son together, Patrick Lyn which completed the family.

The first time John came to Ellensburg to meet Lu’s parents, he came by way of Yakima. When he hit Manastash Ridge and looked out over the Kittitas Valley, he knew he would retire there after the Air Force. In June 1973 he came back to Ellensburg to farm. He first went to work for Les Gardiner’s Custom Combining and spent time getting to know valley farmers. Les introduced John to RJ Crowder on the west side and when combining was done, he went to work for RJ Crowder. He was now Ranch Foreman growing corn, wheat and hay and raising cattle and loving his life. But five years later he would change careers to construction and better money. After two years, he would change again to work at Central Washington University where he found his niche. John would become the Building and Grounds Supervisor for the “SUB” Student Union Building for the next 19 years retiring again in November 1999. He would continue to work at the SUB after retiring in the fall and winter months. In the Spring, he and Lu would travel with their 5th wheel and camp host at Brooks Memorial State Park on Satus Pass. In June 2010 John was diagnosed with Adeno carcinoma of his left lung. He stopped working in the Spring of 2012 and travels ended in the Summer of 2018. Chemo treatments were the priority from 2010-2017.

John was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Dorcus McDaniel’s and her husband Eugene and their daughter Kathleen. John is survived by his wife Lula “Lu”, his children, John W. (Jennifer), Guy K., Randall G. (Denise), Carol L Marnell (Kyle), Michael A, Phillip J (Melissa), Patrick L. (Diane), his 2 sisters Dorothy Jefferey (Gene), Bertha Harshman (Bill). 13 Grandchildren,11 Great Grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews, cousins on his side of the family and on Lu’s side as well.

Funeral services will be held at the Mercer Creek Church at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 1, 2019 followed by a committal at IOOF Cemetery with full military honors.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to OHSU/Layton Aging Alzheimer’s Center, 1121 SW Salmon St, Suite 200, Portland, OR 97205 or Friends of Hospice in Ellensburg. The family would also like to express their appreciation to North Star Lodge, Dr. Kevin Martin and his staff at KVH Home Health and Hospice Service for John’s care.

Steward & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory has been entrusted with caring for John’s family. Online condolences may be left at
  • Guestbook
  • Photos
  • View Map
  • Send Flowers
© 2019 Steward & Williams Privacy Policy Sitemap