Dr. Orville 'Harry' Rathjen

Monday, July 24, 2006

GROVE, Okla. -- Dr. Orville "Harry" Rathjen died Monday, June 19, 2006, at the Integris Grove General Hospital in Grove. He was 85.

Dr. Rathjen was born Jan. 10, 1921, to Harry and Laura (Tromerhauser) Rathjen in Marengo, Iowa. He married Bette Jean Fortner Jan. 10, 1944, in Oklahoma City, Okla. He joined the United States Air Force, and served in the Korean War. Upon completion of his enlistment, he joined the Oklahoma National Guard, flying missions during the Vietnam War, retiring after 38 years of service as a lieutenant colonel.

He also graduated from chiropractic school and started his own practice in 1958 in Ardmore, Okla. After selling his practice, he moved to Oklahoma City and then to Tulsa, where he worked for Southwestern Bell Telephone, retiring as a Yellow Pages sales representative.

Dr. Rathjen retired to Holiday Island, Ark., where he and Bette lived for 20 years. He moved to Grove, Okla., in 2004. He was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and a past member of Rotary International. He was an avid golfer, enjoyed woodworking, and volunteered with Meals on Wheels. He attended the Grace Presbyterian Church.

Survivors include: his wife, Bette Rathjen of Grove; three children, Stan Rathjen and wife Marsha of Houston, Texas, Becky Adair and husband Gary of Grand Lake, Okla., Susan Romigh and husband E.J. of Denton, Texas; two brothers, Keith Rathjen, and Dr. Marvin Rathjen; three sisters, Velma Fetzer, Thelma Naughton, and Evelyn Nelson; three grandchildren; and one great grandson.

Services were held June 23 at the Worley-Luginbuel Funeral Home in Grove. Dr. Deborah Meinke officiated. A private family interment took place at Floral Haven Cemetery in Tulsa, Okla.

Friends and family may send condolences by viewing obituaries at www.honoringmemories.com.