Raymond Eldon Pliska, 94, died Oct. 14 in Portland. Funeral services were held Oct. 20. Graveside services will be at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2016 at Willamette National Cemetery.
Mr. Pliska was born to Emma (Kula) and Frank Pliska on Oct. 2,1922, in Peach Creek, Texas. He was the second youngest of eight children.
In 1929, due to drought conditions in Texas, his family moved to Philomath. He was the state high school boxing champion his senior year. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he joined the Navy. During World War II, he was stationed in the South Pacific on an aircraft carrier as a propeller mechanic specialist. He met Tessie through his sister and they were married in September 1945. He was honorably discharged from the Navy in December 1945. He graduated from University of Oregon with a business and accounting degree. In January 1956, he opened Ray's Mobil. For over thirty years his generosity provided jobs for many family members and friends. He was known in the community for being available anytime to help his customers. Catholic faith and education were important. They were members of both St. Rose and St. Joseph Parishes in Portland, where their children attended school.
He was a member of Knights of Columbus and the Elks Club. He enjoyed golfing with his family, co-founding the Pliska Family Golf Tournament in 1975, which continues annually.
The Pliskas travelled often, attending VC-41 Navy squadron reunions around the United States, and visiting family in Texas and London.
He was preceded in death by Tessie, his wife of 65 years, Tessie, who died in 2011. He is survived by his children, Carolyn Criteser, Susan Masog, Dan Pliska, Anne Van Daam, Dr. John Pliska, Maureen Beaudry, Bernie Pliska and their spouses; 16 grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren, his sister Mildred Lofstedt, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Mr. Pliska was an avid reader, kept up with current events, played cribbage and was always interested in his growing family.
His family describes him as a great role model who influenced many family and friends through his gentle nature, kindness, and fun loving manner.