Decorated World War II veteran Crippen dies in Forks at 90

Peninsula Daily News

FORKS — Wally Crippen, a longtime Forks resident, photo historian and decorated World War II veteran, has died.

Crippen died in Forks at the age of 90 on Wednesday.

He had been in poor health for some time, said Mavis Amundson, a Seattle-based author of several books on Clallam County history.

He served in World War II from 1942 to 1945 and was among the Allied invasion that swept across France and Germany in 1944, Amundson said.

He received a Service Medal and a Bronze Service Arrowhead, Amundson said.

Crippen was born on June 16, 1922, in Burlington to Ira and Annie (Hodge) Crippen.

The family moved to the Hoh Valley when he was a young boy, Amundson said.

Crippen's historical photo collection is archived at the University of Washington Olympic Natural Resources Center in Forks, and many Crippen Collection photos are also in the University of Washington Libraries' digital archives, she said.

Crippen began collecting historical logging photos during his career as a trucker for 25 years with Allen Logging Co. in Forks.

“He used his own money to make reproductions of hundreds of logging images, some showing loggers working in the woods, some driving trucks and many photos showing loggers standing beside their big rigs looking good,” Amundson said.

She described him as a “very likable guy” with “a pleasant, upbeat personality.”

Amundson said Crippen “could name and identify trucks of all kinds, the brand, the make, the year” and “told great stories about logging accidents.”

A memorial service will be planned for this summer, according to a notice from Drennan-Ford Funeral Home in Port Angeles.

Crippen's family includes two sons, David and Bill.

Last modified: May 02. 2013 9:12PM
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