Herbert Lee Darnell was born Dec. 25, 1924, in Hanna, Alberta, Canada to Paul and Ellena (Smith) Darnell. He passed away Feb. 15, 2016, in Longview.
He grew up in Canada and farmed for several years. In the 1950s he moved to the United States to open new stores for Western Auto. He was proud to be a naturalized U.S. citizen.
He married Florence Dickson in 1962 and became an instant father to her four children. Subsequently they had Clifford Dean, their fifth child.
Herb was an excellent auto mechanic and worked for several years at Ernie Garcia Ford in Astoria until he opened his own auto mechanics shop, Big Creek Auto, in Knappa, Ore.
He had great rhythm and loved all types of dancing, especially square dancing. While living in Astoria, he looked forward to gillnet season. He earned extra money fishing to help support his family. His freezer was always full of salmon. Every Sunday he impressed his neighbors and loved-ones with his amazing barbecuing abilities.
Eventually, he and Florence decided to relocate to a warmer climate and chose Prescott, Ariz., where they explored the state they came to love so much. Rock hunting and polishing became a full-time hobby. Their dream was to convince all their children to move south.
Herb was preceded in death by his parents and two siblings, John Darnell and Blanche Kenzler. He lost his beloved wife, Florence in 1992.
He leaves behind his children, Pat Raugust (David), Lezlie Westley McDonald (Paul), Dale Darnell (Susan), DeWayne Darnell (Laurene), and Dean Darnell (Marissa); two sisters, Alyce Wooldridge (Henry) and Joyce VanHereweghe (Louis); a brother, Dale Darnell (Sheryl); and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
A private family celebration of Herb’s life will be held this Spring.