Clyde Nelson Kirby, 87, passed away peacefully on Sept. 21, 2022. He was born Nov. 17, 1934, to Abner "Boots” and Blanche Wells Kirby in Eugene, Ore. He had a brother, Vern Kirby, who was seven years older. After living a short time in Portland, Clyde moved with his family to Parkdale in 1943 and graduated from Parkdale High School in 1952. Clyde married his high school sweetheart, Carol Jensen, on July 25, 1954, and they made their home in Hood River.
Clyde often talked of his early years and his work on tugboats on the Columbia River, and in the woods breaking trail. He later was manager at Brookside Market on the Heights. Clyde may be most remembered for his 17 years of employment at Diamond Fruit Growers, where he managed the Fruit Tree, a very popular I-84 stop selling local fruit and art. In later years, Clyde enjoyed sign painting for many local businesses and working at Walmart.
Sharing a love for travel, he and Carol loved taking RV trips across the country enjoying time with friends and family and making new friends wherever they went through the Good Sam RV club. He also enjoyed taking the occasional Sunday drive to admire the area and the valley he loved so much.
Clyde loved fishing, crabbing, clamming, and camping. As a family, we have many fond memories of Dad in the boat, joined by friends and family taking camping and fishing trips to many lakes, out on Columbia River and to the Oregon Coast.
Active in the community, Clyde volunteered with Little League and Babe Ruth baseball doing fundraising and managing the concession stand, and with WAAAM where he enjoyed giving tours. He also supported many other local organizations including years of membership in the Hood River Elks club.
Clyde is survived by three children, Sue Moore (Darold), Terry Kirby (Virginia) and Norman Kirby (Coya). He was blessed with six grandchildren, Travis (Aileen), Becky (Gary), Jenny (Nick), Drew (Sierra), Tyler (Jessica) and William (Jennifer); five great-grandchildren, Kristian (Cierra), Morgan, Taylor, Elle, Jack, and Gavin; and one great-great-grandchild, Ivy.
We will never forget his storytelling, recaps of history, the occasional pun or two and the random Dad joke. Clyde had a life well lived and he will be missed by so many.
A funeral service will be held in Hood River at the Church of the Nazarene on Oct. 1 at 11 a.m., immediately followed by a reception at the church with graveside services held at 1 p.m. at Idlewild Cemetery. Those who wish are welcome to send donations to Bristol Hospice in lieu of flowers.