Harley G. Babcock
East Wenatchee, WA
Harley G. Babcock, 77, passed away on February 19, 2014, surrounded by his family. He was born east of Long Pine, NE, at his aunt’s home, to the late Harry A. and Margaret E. (Johnson) Babcock Sr. He attended the country school and graduated from Long Pine High School. Upon graduation, he stayed on the family ranch, before gaining employment as a telegraph lineman for the Chicago Northwestern Railroad. Harley had laid eyes on the new school teacher at Long Pine and when she and the Methodist Youth Group were raking his Grandma Johnson’s yard (to raise money for an up and coming trip), he took this opportunity to ride his Indian motorcycle up and down the alley to get her attention. Mary E. Mansbridge and Harley where later married on September 15, 1957 and, shortly after, made their home in Chadron and Crawford, NE, while he attended college and Mary taught school. In 1960, they welcomed their son, James “Jim” to the family. In 1962, they left the family ranch so that Harley could work for the Bureau of Reclamation in Ainsworth/Valentine, NE as a surveyor. Living in a trailer home made moving easier for the family. In 1964, they welcomed a daughter, Susan “Susy”. The Bureau in 1965 transferred Harley to Northern California and here they stayed until 1967. In 1967, he went to work for Bonneville Power Administration as an inspector, traveling to many locations for them. In 1975, the family moved to East Wenatchee. He retired at the young age of 51. He joined Mary with the antique business, helping her display at antique shows throughout the northwest and setting up booths at Apple Annie’s Antique Gallery in Cashmere. He was known as a ‘Tinkerer and a Mr. Fix-it Man’ and enjoyed making and doing things with his grandchildren. In his earlier years, he enjoyed hunting and fishing. A bird watcher, Harley would replenish bird feeders around the house daily; he knew the names of the species that would visit and recognized their songs. He loved a good mystery novel or historical biography and kept a daily diary of his life.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Mary E, of East Wenatchee; children, James “Jim” (Ginger) Babcock of East Wenatchee, and Susan “Susy” (John) Breneman of Colbert, WA; brother, Harry (Jo) Babcock of Bassett, NE; sister, Lorene Mercier of Grant, NE; grandchildren, April Babcock of Atlanta, GA, Braden Babcock of Spokane, and Conner and Camryn Breneman, both of Colbert, WA.
A Memorial Service will be held on Friday, February 28, 2014, at 2:00 p.m. at the Trinity Methodist Church, 850 N. James Avenue, East Wenatchee. Daughter Susy is suggesting getting a bird feeder to feed the birds in his memory, or cash donations may be made to the Boy Scouts of America, Troop #89, 2350 10th Street NE, East Wenatchee, WA 98802. You are invited to view his online guestbook at: www.HeritageMemorialChapel.com. Arrangements are by Heritage Memorial Chapel, East Wenatchee, WA.