WARREN KENNETH STRATTON ~ Class of 1952
December 5, 1933 - June 15, 2012
Warren Kenneth Stratton, 78, pioneering aerospace leader who retired to become a pastor to New England's pastors, died June 15, 2012, after a brief illness.
Warren was born in Boise, ID, on December 5, 1933, and married the love of his life, Joan Baker, in Richland in 1953. They raised four children in Media, PA, and have 12 grandchildren.
Warren earned his degree from the University of Washington School of Engineering, where he later taught as an adjunct faculty member. He also briefly served in the U.S. Army.
After working on Boeing's original pre-Sputnik space shuttle program (code-named "Dinosaur") in Seattle, Warren moved to Boeing's Philadelphia division. He became one of the world's leading experts on field-safe fiberglass helicopter rotor blade design and project manager for the iconic twin-rotor Sea Knight Navy and Coast Guard rescue helicopters.
He moved to California in 1982, where he helped spearhead the creation of the Army's famous Apache attack helicopters for Hughes Aircraft, and later became vice president of Northrop-Grumman's Newbury Park division responsible for much of the Air Force's cutting-edge stealth technology.
Warren and Joan retired to Bedford in 1995, where they became beloved pillars of Bethany Covenant Church, serving the congregation in numerous capacities.
In "retirement," Warren volunteered as a trustee and consultant to numerous nonprofit ministries and churches.
Stephen A. Macchia, past president of Vision New England and founder of Leadership Transformations at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary described Warren as "a minister to New England's ministers."
Warren will be remembered as a warm and loving husband, father, grandfather, leader and friend who could always be relied upon for his compassionate listening, straight-shooting advice and off-beat sense of humor.
He loved golf, bridge, poetry, suspense novels and hard-hitting nonfiction. Other than his God, his wife and his family and friends, Warren's greatest love was spending time at his cabin on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee, where he could be found with a fishing pole in hand, a broad grin on his face and a gentle admonition to always "be safe." He was dearly loved and will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Family members include his wife of 59 years, Joan Baker Stratton ('52) of Bedford, NH; two sons, Gary Stratton and his wife, Sue, of Hollywood, CA, Scott Stratton and wife Kerstin of Bedford; two daughters, Laurie Stratton Bruns and husband John of Lafayette, CA; Diane Stratton Dunkle and husband Steve of Bedford; as well as his beloved grandchildren, Dan, Leslie, Ashley, Jordan, Joshua, Micaiah, Christopher, Patrick, Alex, Melissa, Jessica, and Tylor; nephews, nieces, and cousins.
Calling hours at Lambert Funeral Home & Crematory, 1799 Elm St, corner of North St, Manchester, will be Monday from 7 to 9 pm.
The funeral service will be Tuesday (19th?) at 10am in Bethany Covenant Church, 1 Covenant Way, Bedford, NH. Burial will follow in Bedford Center Cemetery.
Memorial donations may be made in his memory to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, 811 West Evergreen Ave, Suite 204, Chicago, IL 60642 or go to www.pulmonaryfibrosis.org/donate
For more information, please go to www.lambertfuneralhome.com.
Published in Union Leader on June 17, 2012