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Earl L. Bretton Jr.

August 30, 1935 - October 24, 2013

Earl L. Bretton Jr., 78, of Salina, departed this life Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013. He was born Aug. 30, 1935, in Orion to Earl and Hazel Bretton.

Earl grew up in eastern Colorado with his family but returned to Gove, where he graduated from Gove High School. In 1956, Earl married Clara Grace Russell. To this union was born a son, Richard, in 1957. Clara and an unborn daughter passed in 1958.

In 1961, he married Aletha Lois Morse, who had a son, William Jesse, in 1960, from her first marriage to Junior Jesse Morse, who passed in 1960. From this union, Earl and Aletha had a son, Raymond Dale, in 1962. In 1968, the family moved to Garden City, where all three sons graduated from Garden City High School. In 1984, Earl and Aletha moved to Salina to be nearer to their boys.

For most of Earl's life, he was a self-employed carpenter and enjoyed spending time with his family camping, hunting and fishing. After Aletha's passing, Earl became a snowbird and traveled between Kansas and California, where he met a close companion, Lois Pickens, of Alaska. They spent the next 12 years together traveling between Kansas, California and Alaska. Due to Earl's health, he returned to Salina to be with his family.

Earl was preceded in death by his parents, Earl and Hazel Bretton; wife, Clara Bretton; and wife, Aletha Bretton. He leaves to mourn his passing his three sons, Richard (Elva), William (Linda) and Raymond (Julie); five grandchildren, Shawn, Donny, Ryan, Courtney and Nathan; sisters, Buela Wilson and Earlene Steerman; and many nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.

His memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, at Ryan Mortuary, Salina. Memorials: American Lung Association.