Obituary: Harold E. Ahlers (May 7, 1915 – July 7, 2013)

By Submitted July 12, 2013 04:48 pm

Harold E. Ahlers
Harold E. Ahlers
Harold E. Ahlers died July 7, 2013, after a brief illness. He was born on May 7, 1915, in Dayton, Ohio, and spent his childhood there. As a young man, he joined the Dayton-based National Cash Register Company (NCR) as a repair mechanic. Much of his service work was in Madison, Wis., where he met and married Irene Zillmer in 1938. They settled in Dayton while Harold continued to work with NCR until 1942. Harold joined the Civilian Corps as part of the WWII defense efforts and was sent to Haines, Alaska, as part of the crew constructing the Alaska Highway. He returned home in 1944, resuming his job with the NCR and chose to transfer to California. After many years in Southern California, he rose to the management/administrative position, necessitating multiple moves within Northern California and the West Coast. In 1977, Harold retired from NCR; a year later, he and Irene moved to the California coast, as they had fallen in love with Crescent City.

Harold was a master draftsman and model builder, particularly of boats and trains. He also collected, restored and loved antique clocks, crafting many parts by hand. Not only was Harold a voracious reader, but an author as well, writing many magazine articles, short stories and a novel. He was a walking library of knowledge regarding maritime history as well as the history of trains, boats and automobiles. Also, he would happily explain, in detail, how and why just about anything “mechanical” worked. He loved his many hobbies, his home, family, Crescent City and his “church family” at Grace Lutheran. Harold’s faith was solid and unshakable. He was kind, loving, and known as a true “gentleman” in every way.

His wife Irene died in 2002, but he is survived by his daughter, Carolyn Campbell, and her husband, Curt, of Oakhurst, Calif.; granddaughter Julie Crabtree and husband Phil and their children, great-granddaughters Charlotte and Isabel of Tigard, Ore.; and grandson Jay E. Campbell of Santa Barbara, Calif.

A remembrance and Celebration of Life will be held at Grace Lutheran Church on Sunday, July 14, at 2  p.m.

Please sign the family’s online guest book at

Arrangements are under the direction of Wier’s Mortuary Chapel.