|Birth: ||Jan. 20, 1916|
|Death: ||Sep., 2006|
David W. Platt, Sr., 90, passed away of natural causes at his home in Yuma. He was a retired Southern Pacific Railroad Conductor. He retired in 1978. He was born on a cotton farm in Kaufman County, Texas on January 20, 1916 and was the son of Burt and Stella Mae (Mills) Platt. He is preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Frank and Ernest Platt; sisters, Etta, Emma, and Geneva; and his maternal grandmother, Eula Mills.
David is survived by his wife of the home, Virginia A. Platt; sons, David Jr. (Cathy) and Jim (Lavina); grandchildren, Alyson and Dan Platt, Mike, David III, Don Platt and Catherine Ferguson; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He picked cotton by hand, chopped cotton, plowed fields with a team of mules, was a truck driver and hauled live cattle to the Dallas, Texas market, worked on the Ford Assembly Line in 1933 in Dallas putting together Model A cars. This is when he decided inside work is NOT for me.
David went to the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in 1935 and worked on various projects in the western states. In the CCC he used every opportunity to advance his learning. He built the roads for the Tucson Desert Botanical Garden, lined the canals in the Yuma Valley in the 1930's, worked at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon repairing the Bright Angel Trail, built picnic areas in Arizona, Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and Idaho. He green broke horses in Colorado, helped build a lodge in Estes Park, Colorado, and worked in Grand Junction. He was offered a job as a park ranger and turned it down because 20 degrees below zero in the winter is not for me. He fought forest fires in Montana and drove an ambulance between Casper and Gillette, Wyoming fighting coal fires. He was also an amateur boxer. People wanted him to turn Pro and he said no. He also enjoyed photography and nature.
He was hired by the Bureau of Reclamation and worked on projects around Yuma. While in Yuma he met and married his love, Virginia. They enjoyed 65 years of marriage. David and Virginia married July 26, 1941. They moved to Vallejo, California where he worked as a metallurgist in the ship yards building battle ships for the War Department.
On December 7, 1941 David and Virginia were enjoying a Sunday picnic at the Golden Gate Park when the word was received that Pearl Harbor had been attacked. His job in the ship yards was no longer a job. It was his patriotic duty. After losing two of his brother-in-laws in the war, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and saw action in the Battle of the Bulge in Europe. He told his wife, I can't stay here, I have to fight. At 28 years old he entered the war.
After the war he was hired by Arizona Edison as a lineman. He hired on the Southern pacific Railroad in the late 1940's and advanced from Brakeman to conductor. He loved to fish, hike, camp and enjoy nature and the outdoors. He passed on to his children his love of nature. he was an avid exercise buff. He lifted weights at the gym until he was 84 years old and he worked out at home until he was 89.
A celebration of Life will be at Valley Baptist Church, 8th Street and Avenue C on Saturday, September 23, 2006 at 11 a.m. with Pastor Glenn Connell officiating.
Final resting place will be Desert Lawn Memorial Park.
Donations in his memory can be made to Hospice of Yuma or Valley Baptist Church Building Fund.
Yuma Sun 09/21/2006
Virginia Aileen Gilliland Platt (1923 - 2015)*
Desert Lawn Memorial Park
Created by: Marilyn
Record added: Dec 19, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 102358392
Added: Mar. 21, 2015
Added: Dec. 19, 2012