Barbara and David Oakley

Herald staffJuly 6, 2013 

Barbara and David Oakley of Richland will celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary with a family dinner and a July vacation to the Oregon coast.

They were married June 12, 1948, at the Methodist Episcopal Church in New York, N.Y. They moved to the Mid-Columbia from Niskayuna, N.Y., in 1968.

Barbara attended Spencer Business School in New York City. She worked for Crosse & Blackwell; Employers Mutual of Wausau Insurance Company; State of New York income tax department and in the radiation exposure records department of Battelle Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland. She retired from Battelle in 1993. She volunteers as a chaperone for the Central United Protestant Church high school choir, as manager of a young girls baseball team and she belongs to several bridge groups.

After high school graduation, David worked in drafting at a fabrication plant. He enlisted in the Army Air Force during World War II, which included two years of combat in the South Pacific. He entered Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., in which he graduated with a bachelor of mechanical engineering. He worked for Owens Corning Fiberglass, General Electric in Schenectady, N.Y., and assisted in the design of the naval reactor power plant in the submarine Seawolf. He continued work on naval reactors on ships and aircraft carriers while earning his master’s degree in mechanical engineering.

In 1968 he joined Battelle Northwest in Richland to work on the design of the Fast Flux Test Facility. When Westinghouse replaced Battelle he was assigned management of the Core Support Structure. He retired from Westinghouse in 1989. After a week of retirement, Battelle asked him to return to work for them. After 47 years in nuclear engineering and 50 years in engineering he retired a second time in 1997.

He is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (eight patents), the National Rifle Association, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Civil Pilots Association, Experimental Aircraft Association, Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Association of Individual Investors, Richland Rod and Gun Club and the Tri-Cities Shooting Association.

They have four children, Susan Husa of Richland; David Oakley of Imperial, N.B.; Karen Durant of Lake Oswego, Ore.; and Barbara Holmberg of Kaneohe, Hawaii.

They have six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

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