Earl Vidrine, 91, of Orange, Texas passed away peacefully on Friday, July 9, 2021, in his apartment at, Heartis Assisted Living, in Webster, Texas. Funeral services, under the direction of Dorman Funeral Home, will be held on Wednesday, July 14, 2021 at 10:30 am, at Dorman Funeral Home in Orange, Texas. Visitation for family and friends will be held on Tuesday, July 13, 2021 from 6:00pm until 8:00 pm. Interment will follow services at, Autumn Oaks Memorial Park in Orange, Texas.
Earl was born in Mamou, Louisiana on April 1, 1930, to Theomile and Felonise Vidrine and was the youngest of 10 children. (Isabell, Adlis, Essie, Irvin, Della, Willard, Lanson, Rose, & Helen) He grew up on a farm in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Earl joined the Navy in 1948 at the age of 17. He honed the skills learned from his father by working in the machine and carpentry shops on various ships. In his 24 years of naval service, Earl traveled the seven seas and had many port o'calls throughout the world.
Earl had five children and a stepdaughter with his first wife, Billie Eloise Heyse. (Cindy Vidrine Marshall & husband Wayne of Red Deer, Canada; Robert Vidrine & wife Debbie of Bridge City, Texas; Debbie Vidrine Perry (deceased)& husband Matthew of Orange, Texas; Craig Vidrine & wife Mandi of Benton, Arkansas; Cathy Vidrine of Henderson, Nevada; and Glenda Palmer of Louisville, Tennessee) He had one daughter with his wife, Elsa Murtomaki. (Lisa Vidrine Ferguson & husband Chris of Houston, Texas) Earl was blessed with numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
After marrying Elsa in San Diego, California in 1968, they moved to Orange, Texas where he retired from the Navy as a Lieutenant in 1972. After retirement, he originated a building trades vocational class at Little Cypress-Mauriceville High School. The program taught various building trades, such as carpentry, framing, roofing, etc. and built a house from foundation to finish in- the- course of one school year. Many of his former students work in the construction industry as a continuation of his mentorship. After retiring as a teacher, he began his career remodeling homes with his oldest son, Robert. Many homeowners have commented that there was their idea and then there was the “right way” per Earl’s opinion. He was known for his “Cajun ingenuity”. Earl valued “a hard day’s work”, integrity, a good reputation, and patriotism.
Earl and Elsa were members of Grace Lutheran Church in the early 1970’s, then members of First Assembly of God Church on 16th Street in Orange, Texas, which later became Community Church. They were members there for 40+ years. Earl volunteered with The Lion’s Club in Orange and worked many carnivals and LC-M football games. Although he traveled the world in the Navy, Earl cared more about people than places. He enjoyed relationships gained through his family, church, and his naval reunions. He also enjoyed fishing, hunting, working in his garden.
Although he was often seen as stern, he was very light-hearted and had a very quick wit. When one saw that twinkle in his blue eyes, you knew he was up to mischief! He valued living his life through fairness and integrity. He had a strong faith in Christ and held that very dear in his family and work life. Earl often said he learned something from his Navy days that could be translated into one’s spiritual life, “Always keep your ditty bags packed, because you never know when you will be called for immediate transfer.” He did just that! He lived for The Lord and was ready to meet Him.
He is survived by his children and brother, Lanson Vidrine, 95 of Lake Charles, Louisiana. He is preceded in death by his wife, Elsa and his daughter Debbie.
In Lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to, Southeast Texas Veterans Service Group.
Address: P.O. Box 12352 Beaumont, Texas. 77726 / Phone: (409) 673-0780 / Email: SETVSG@yahoo.com
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