Nov. 4, 2020 — Fred Bliss, 80, of Florence, passed away Oct. 9, 2020, after a hard-fought battle with cancer.
Fred graduated from Illinois Valley High School in Cave Junction, Ore., in 1958 and began an eclectic career that included log trucks, mills, hauling rock and long-haul trucking up and down the West Coast.
Even after challenging careers, Fred still dreamt of driving trucks.
Fred’s sister, Carole, along with her husband Gary Clawson, owned Fisherman’s Wharf on Bay Street in Old Town Florence. In 1978, they asked Fred to move to Florence to manage the Wharf for them. Later, they bought The Whistler and Fred managed that as well.
In 1986, Fred bought The Muffler Center on Hwy. 101 and managed it until 2000. After his “retirement,” Fred did many things because “retirement” wasn’t really in his vocabulary.
He worked part time for Johnston Motor Co.; worked on golf carts for anyone who owned one; and worked as a campground host managing Thousand Trails for six years in Oregon and Washington.
Traveling and cruising was another of his loves, from the Caribbean and Tahiti to Canada and Mexico. But his greatest love was golfing. He was most proud of his two hole-in-ones.
Beng a Valentine’s Day baby, Fred loved everything — fishing, crabbing, playing in a pool league for Jerry’s tavern and doing jig-saw puzzles on cold winter days.
He has 13 grandkids, a bunch of great-grandkids and more nieces and nephews than you can count.
Fred leaves behind his wife of 22 years, Jarolyn; his two daughters: Jeni Vinson and Julie (Dan) Blythe (both of Bellingham, Wash.); his son Jeff of Myrtle Point, Ore.; his sister Carole (Gary) Clawson of Florence; his brother Richard (Linda) Bliss of Brookings, Ore.; and his sister Dianne (Ray) Hauck of Grants Pass, Ore.
A celebration of Fred’s life will be held at the Florence Events Center on Saturday, Nov. 7, at 3 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, please send a donation to the Friends of Florence Van Fans (P.O. Box 598, Florence, Ore. 97439).