Gary Wayne Haga passed away on Wednesday February 16, 2022. Surrounded by his brothers and a few close family members. He was 74 young. Gary was born in Beckley, West Virginia on March 18, 1947 to Clifton Junior Haga and Rachel Loraine (Hurley) Haga. Gary was born the son of a Coal Miner and true to the history of coal mining, the family moved where the mining business took them, from West Virginia to New Mexico, then Arizona where Gary graduated from school and embarked on a series of adventures. Gary had a wide variety of experiences growing up and even through the hardest times Gary maintained a fun loving and benevolent nature that which even the Vietnam War couldn’t extinguish though it tried it’s best. Barely in his 20’s Gary became a Helicopter Gunner and was shot down twice during combat. Gary was awarded the prestigious Air Medal for his acts of heroism while combating the enemy. Gary was honorably discharged in April 1974. Upon return home to Arizona, he met Cheryl Yoder and they were married in December 1975. After several years, they decided to move to Salida, Colorado where they spent the rest of their lives together becoming an integral part of the community, working, making friends, enjoying the mountains, and opening their own businesses including the Centerville Pitt Stop. They were married 45 years upon Cheryl’s passing. Gary was predeceased by his lovely wife Cheryl in January 2021, and his parents Clifton and Loraine Haga many years prior. He is survived by his brothers Michael Haga (wife Roni) of Damascus, Oregon and Arnold Haga of Tempe, Arizona, his lifelong friend and “third Brother” Rick O’Neall (wife Jan), and by his wife Cheryl’s family with whom he was close, Velma Yoder-McCormick of Salida Colorado, Michael Yoder (Jayne) of Ann Arbor, Michigan, Steve Yoder (Susan) of Howell Michigan, Kevin Yoder (Diane) of Centennial Colorado, Karen McCullough (Mark) of Saline Michigan, and many nieces, nephews, and friends. The family would like to make special mention of Diane (Soukup) Yoder who, with deep love and compassion, went to great lengths and personal sacrifice to ensure Gary’s wellbeing after Cheryl passed; and to Rick O’Neall who certainly acted at great personal sacrifice in the aid and support of Gary his best friend for over 60 years. They are both greatly appreciated. A memorial service will be scheduled at a future date at which time Gary will be celebrated.In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Gary may go to the Tunnels to Towers Foundation at t2t.org
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