William H. 'Willie' Heinze

Mechanic, 79William H. "Willie" Heinze, 79, of Astoria, died Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2003, in Portland.

Mr. Heinze was born Sept. 12, 1923 in Astoria to Otto Daniel Heinze and Marie Bertha Lempke Heinze. He grew up in the Astoria area.

During World War II, he worked in the shipyards in Portland as an electrician. He returned to Astoria and started his career as a mechanic, working for Astoria Motors, Chrysler-Plymouth and other garages in Astoria as a shop foreman. He operated his own garage on Bond Street for a few years before going to Alaska as a diesel mechanic on whaling boats. Prior to his retirement, he went to school to become a refrigeration specialist. Family members said he will be remembered as one of the best mechanics in Astoria.

Mr. Heinze's hobbies included taking care of his cats, gardening roses, hunting, fishing and clam digging. His family said they remembered him as always willing to help others, particularly by rebuilding bicycles to give to needy children.

He was a member of Bethany Free Lutheran Church, the Astoria Elks Lodge BPOE No. 180 where he was a past exalted ruler, the American Legion, the Eagles and the Moose lodges.

Mr. Heinze is survived by one daughter and son-in-law, Sheree and Mark Larson of Astoria; three grandsons and two spouses, Donald Jr. and Cynthia Miller, of Prineville, David and Cynthia Miller, of Springfield and Daniel Miller of Astoria; three nieces, Carole Birney and her husband, Daryl, of Hammond, Marlene Prescott of Yorba Linda, Calif., Lani Dedman and her husband, Don, of Portland, and Dorothy Fritz and her husband, Skip, of El Cajon, Calif.; a nephew, Daniel Smith of Seaside; three great-grandchildren; numerous cousins, nieces, nephews and friends; and close friend Burton Parker of Warrenton. Three sisters and three brothers preceded him in death.

Visitation is 1 to 7 p.m. Monday and 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesday at Caldwell's Luce-Layton Mortuary in Astoria.

A funeral is 2 p.m. Tuesday at Bethany Free Lutheran Church. Committal will follow in Greenwood Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Elks Children's Eye Clinic, 3375 S.W. Terwilliger Blvd., Portland, OR 97239.

Caldwell's Luce-Layton Mortuary in Astoria is in charge of arrangements.

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