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Debs Ozbirn
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Debs Edgar Ozbirn, 88, died in his sleep Wednesday, March 4.

He was born in Oklahoma and raised in Oakdale.

He studied agriculture and auto mechanics at Oakdale High School before joining the Navy in 1941. Over five years later, he was recognized for his service in American Defense, Asiatic Pacific, Philippine Liberation, and recipient of Victory Medal of World War II. He was honorably discharged, having risen to the rank of Machinist's Mate First Class.

After the war, Mr. Ozbirn enrolled in barber school then worked as a barber on a passenger ship to Guam. It was on the tropical island where he met and married his wife. Together, they returned to live in San Leandro where they celebrated more than 50 years of anniversaries.

He was an avid golfer and enjoyed fishing, hunting, and gardening. The fall salmon run on the Klamath River was a favorite time for Mr. Ozbirn. He was also a member of the Elks Club and a competitive member of SIRS (Sons In Retirement) Golf Club.

The family thanks the people who cared for him from Odyssey HealthCare hospice.

He is survived by his loving daughter, Linda Huggins; brother, Fred Ozbirn of Modesto; and sister, Opal Matt of Escalon.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Jane.

He was laid to rest in Burwood Cemetery, Escalon, with service attended by close family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be sent in his name to Odyssey HealthCare at or the charity of your choice.

The Escalon (Calif.) Times

March 25, 2009