2013-05-16 / Obituaries

Earl H. Tettleton

Earl H. Tettleton lived in Mariposa for many years. He was known as the developer of the Tettleton Wildlife Museum. He passed away on Jan. 31, 2012, in Montrose.

Earl was born in Whitesboro, Texas, Nov. 27, 1914, to Dalla Laura Knight and Obe Tettleton. After high school in Athens, he enlisted in the U.S. Calvary stationed at Ft. Bliss out of El Paso, Texas. The cavalry was on horseback at that time, just before becoming a motorized division. He told many stories about camp and his military maneuvers with his army buddies. During his time at Fort Bliss, he learned about the blossoming aircraft industry in California. He took a correspondence course in aircraft manufacturing from Lockheed. Upon being discharged, he moved to Glendale, California and began working for Lockheed Burbank lasting 30 years.

Earl married Sue Stitick. They lived in Glendale for seven years, and then he built a home in La Crescenta for his growing family. Sue died in 1953 leaving Earl, Susan, 9 and Larry, 7. He married Irma Delle Brown and they had a son, David.

Over the years the family enjoyed camping and traveling. After viewing the abundant wildlife in Alaska, Earl began to acquire hides and specimens of North American birds and animals. He used his skills as a landscape artist, and photographer to create dioramas for display. Earl, Irma Delle Tettleton and David moved to Morro Bay to establish the Tettleton Wildlife Museum and Goodtime Gallery.

Later Earl and Irma Delle moved to Mariposa relocating the museum. Upon retirement Earl donated many of the mounted animals and dioramas to the Sierra Mono Indian Museum in North Fork. They are still on display at that museum. In appreciation, Earl and Irma Delle were given life memberships to the museum.

After several years in Mariposa, Earl married Mildred Troilo. In 2008, they decided to downsize and move to Palm Desert closer to Millie’s son, Ric. Following Millie’s death in 2010, Earl moved to Mountview Retirement Community to be close to his daughter, Susan.

Earl is survived by his three children, Susan Hallgren, Glendale; Lawrence Tettleton (Laurie), La Verne; David Tettleton, Gualala; stepson, Ric Oliver, Rancho Mirage; former wife Irma Delle Tettleton, La Verne; five grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and friends and family in Texas. He left a legacy of good memories, three homes he built, beautiful paintings and photos of the natural world he enjoyed.

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