It is with the heaviest of hearts that the family of John Fullner announces that he went to be with the Lord on Nov. 18, 2012.
John was born in Vallejo, Calif., to Britt and Lydia Fullner on May 3, 1940. The family moved to Napa when he was a very young boy. John attended Napa schools, graduating from Napa High School in 1958. It was during this time that he met the love of his life, Karlene Staffen. John enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. John and Karlene were married in 1960. John was stationed on the USS Hancock CVA19 in the Pacific.
They made their home in Napa when he was discharged from the Navy in 1965. John then started his marine machinist apprenticeship at Mare Island Naval Shipyard in Shop 38. Over the years, he worked his way up to progressman for Shop 38 and made lifelong friends along the way. John started the “Hawaiian Shirt Fridays” and barbecues in the park at lunchtime.
After retiring from Mare Island in 1995, John worked for the Napa Valley Unified School District in the food service warehouse for a couple of years. After leaving this job, he worked for the city of Napa in the recycling department for approximately 10 years. He was very passionate about his position, educating everyone about the importance of recycling.
John and Karlene were foster parents for many years. During this time, they helped so many children, several of whom have come back to say thank you.
John grew up in church, having first attended First Baptist Church with his mom. They then attended Christian Missionary Alliance Church, which John’s father, Britt, helped build. John held a number of positions at CMA and also played the organ. He was also an amazing trumpet player and played numerous times at church.
John made an incredible impact on so many people. He never met a stranger and gave so much of his time and wisdom to help anyone who needed it.
John is survived by his wife of 51 years (almost 52), Karlene; children, Bill Coutant (Barbara), Tami Shaw (Bill), Brenda Fullner (Darrell), Joey Fullner, Tanya Cinq-Mars (Carl) and Lisa Williams; grandchildren, Jon Hughes (Nora), Heather Hughes, Christine McKenzie (David), Brian Fullner, Joshua Shaw, Joscelyn Cash, Natasha and Amber Cinq-Mars, Rhiannah and Nico Fullner; great-grandchildren, Christopher Hughes, Jessica Hughes, Jordyn Gilliland, Connor and Quinn McKenzie. He is also survived by his last sibling, sister Angie Khoury. John is preceded in death by parents, Britt and Lydia Fullner; sisters, Caroline and Jean; and brother, Britt.
A memorial service will be held at the Christian Missionary Church at 721 Trancas St. in Napa at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012. The family is encouraging bright colors or Hawaiian dress. Final interment will be at the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery in Dixon, Calif.
The family has requested that, in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to the Bus Ministries at the Hopewell Baptist Church, 3755 Linda Vista Ave., Napa, CA 94558.