One of America’s Greatest Generation, George Daniel Francis Powers, 94, has journeyed to Heaven as he seeks more understanding of God’s World. George Powers was born in South Bend, Indiana on July 5, 1922 to parents Daniel Powers, a plumber, and Harriet McNabb Powers, a homemaker. George was the eldest of the five Powers children and was devoted to his siblings. George was studious and driven. He entered Notre Dame University to study electrical engineering and earned his degree in an accelerated period of three years, cum laude, while working part-time at the university. It was during World War II when he graduated and continued his studies at MIT while enlisted in the US Navy as an ensign. It was a desperate time for our nation and our country needed all our military and citizens helping in the war effort. George worked on a part of the Manhattan Project and on radar for aircraft. After the War, George’s career paralleled the technology of the day. George worked for General Electric, Martin-Marietta, and Goodyear Aerospace. He helped develop push buttons for cooktops, microwave ovens, set up radar for our national security, helped develop radar for the SR-71 Blackbird, and other projects.
As George’s career grew, so did his family. It was a love story that began when Edith Sailor met George at the young age of 14, while they attended Central High School in South Bend. She became his bride on September 16, 1943. The couple raised four children. His career path took them to many cities; Erie, Pennsylvania, South Bend, Indiana, Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, Maitland, Florida, Alamogordo, New Mexico, Glendale, Arizona, Litchfield Park, Arizona, and they retired in Sun City, Arizona. Edith set up the households as George settled in a new project and they developed friendships over the years and enjoyed entertaining, always charming hosts. They also enjoyed their mountain home in Munds Park.
George was the modern age Renaissance Man. He loved his books from an early age and was a natural learner. His retirement allowed him to delve deeper into other areas of interest. He learned to play the organ, taught students for ESL, learned leather tooling, making silver jewelry, crochet, painting and stained glass. He enjoyed golf and tennis; often surprising younger players with his finesse. George passed on his curiosity and fervor for learning to all of his progeny. He enjoyed discussing String Theory with his son and grandson, and extraterrestrials with his great grandson. Also, he loved to keep up with all the kids’ activities, from swim teams, BMX biking, horseback riding and rodeo, dancing, guitar and bands, cheerleading, soccer, scouts, theatre, and football!
George married Patricia Swain on February 14, 2007. Patricia has been a devoted wife and admirer of George and he was smitten with her. They made a lovely dance couple together and when it became more difficult for him to dance, she helped him move through the floor gracefully, and demonstrated to everyone around them that love is sometimes about making it better for the other person and helping them fulfill as many wishes as possible. Patricia has helped George make it to as many bridge games as possible to the delight of other players and be a volunteer at many church activities. Patricia has been instrumental in his medical care and we all appreciate her efforts in the care of George. Patricia’s family welcomed George at many family gatherings and he enjoyed them, also.
Preceding George in reaching Heaven are his parents, his wife Edith, his daughter Pamela, son-in-law Ron Walker, sisters Helen and Patsy, brothers-in-law Bud Cover and Ted Koehler, and sister-in-law Virginia Powers. Surviving George are his wife Patricia Swain, brothers Richard of South Bend and Joe and wife Dixie of Vantana Lakes, his three sons; George Daniel Powers, Jr. and wife Jody, of Cave Creek, Jeffrey and wife Julie Valenzuela of Houston, TX, David and wife Robin of The Colony, TX. Grandchildren; Danette Kohl and husband Matt of Gilbert, James Bunker of Parker, Daniel Powers, Sr. and wife Karen of Carefree, Monte Powers and wife Lisa of Scottsdale, Dawn Chevalier of Phoenix, Carisa Powers and husband Kerry Lee, Sean Powers, Elyse Powers and husband Jeff Rhodes all of Houston, TX, David Nathan Powers, Emily Powers, Jaron Powers all of Texas. Great-grandchildren; Krystal Holyoak, Brent Kohl, Trevor Kohl, Kody Kohl, Daniel William Powers, Jr., Wayne Powers, Desiree Chevalier, Nacona Bunker, DaMonte Silvan, Brooke Powers, Brody Powers, and Julia Lee. Great-great grandchildren; Sonny Holyoak, Andrew Holyoak, Adalyn Holyoak, Dax Powers, Ryder Powers, Camille Powers, Wyatt Kohl, Alexander Katen.
Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. with Rosary at 6:00 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016 at Menke Funeral & Cremation Center, 12420 N. 103rd Ave., Sun City, AZ. Funeral Mass will be 10:00 a.m., Thursday, November 3, 2016 at St. Clement of Rome Catholic Church, 15800 N. Del Webb Blvd., Sun City, AZ.
In lieu of sending flowers, please send donations to the Muscular Dystrophy Association.