Francis “Paul” Stiles passed away peacefully at home on May 27, 2010.
Paul was born May 11, 1916 in McFarland, Calif. to Frank M. Stiles and Sadie Heard Stiles. He loved to fly, purchasing his first airplane before he was 16.
After two years of Jr. College, at the age of 23, he joined the US Navy. Upon completing pilot training in Corpus Christie, Texas, he became a flight instructor and received his wings of gold. He was assigned as a flight instructor after Pearl Harbor. He retired with the rank of Lt. Commander U.S. Navy Reserve.
While in Texas, he met a young school teacher, Kathleen. Paul and Kathleen Shelton Jones were married February 1, 1943 in Dallas, Texas. Following the end of WWII, Paul and Kathleen settled in South Gate, Calif. Paul flew as a pilot for Fairchild Aerial Survey from 1945 to 1955 where he did high altitude mapping in North and South America in a customized P-38 Lightning.
In 1953 the family bought an avocado and citrus grove and moved to Fallbrook. Paul purchased Fallbrook Tractor in 1965, expanding and moving the business to its present location. He sold it in 1979.
He was active in the community. He was a charter member of the Kiwanis, Antique Car Club and Historical Society, and participated in the informal garden and horticultural group the “Dirty Dozen” and the Fallbrook Garden Club.
He served as a member of the board of directors for the Fallbrook Fire Dept. and was president from April 1961 until November 1971.
Having met at the Methodist Church in Corpus Christie, Paul and Kathleen were active members of the Fallbrook United Methodist Church where Paul enjoyed the Wednesday work group immensely. His regular sharing of his garden and grove bounty was always appreciated.
Paul is survived by his wife, Kathleen; daughters Kerith (Cal) Graeber and Janet (Bill) Lewis; granddaughters Sheri (Harold) Mahr and Kym Lewis Adame; four great-granddaughters; one great-grandson; two great-great-granddaughters; and their beloved surrogate family Ilicio and Patricia Oliveros and their two sons.
A celebration of his life will be held June 13 at 2 p.m. at the Fallbrook United Methodist Church. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Paul Stiles Memorial Fund for scholarship at the Fallbrook Methodist Church or the charity of your choice.