Harold Richard Bitter
November 25, 1930 – April 8, 2018
It is with great sadness that the family of Harold Richard Bitter announces his passing on April 8, 2018, after a brief illness.
Harold was born in Fresno, California, on November 25, 1930, to John and Catherine Bitter. He was the tenth-born of eleven siblings. After graduating from Edison High School of Fresno and attending Fresno City College, he was called to join the U.S. Navy to serve in the Korean war. He was a radioman and became very adept at Morse code, a skill which he maintained until his death. He served on several navy vessels through the war. During this time, he married his high school sweetheart, Carolyn Ann Nelson, also of Fresno. Two children were born to the family, Rick and Doug.
After discharge from the navy, Harold was hired by the Federal Aviation Administration as an air traffic controller. This work took the family to several locations in the Western U.S., including San Bruno, California, Battle Mountain, Nevada, Hobbs, New Mexico, and Oxnard, California, before finally settling in Pacific Grove, California in 1962. After 25 years of service, Harold retired from the FAA in 1983. This was not the end of his working life, as he worked for another 10 years as a maintenance man/gardener at various locations, including Forest Hill Manor in Pacific Grove.
In his free time Harold enjoyed woodworking and always had a project underway. He was also a talented artist and was able to create life-like paintings, as well as beautiful calligraphy. He volunteered at the Crosby Pro-Am golf tournament for 20 years. He was a member of the Monterey Elks Lodge for many years.
Harold is survived by his wife of 66 years, Carolyn, of Pacific Grove, California and his two children, Rick (Cindy) of Pacific Grove, California, and Doug (Janet) of Roseburg, Oregon. Also surviving are his grandchildren: Rickey, of Arcata, California, Ryan (Kate) of Pacific Grove, California, Kristen (Eric), of Portland, Oregon, and Lacey (Jeff) of Lees Summit, Missouri, as well as four great-grandchildren. Harold also has three surviving siblings: Phillip Bitter, Robert Bitter and Alvina Winder, all of Fresno, California. A small family memorial service is being planned for a later date.