Bernard John Doyle

doyle2Bernard (Bern) John Doyle, 91, of Bellevue WA, passed away in Kirkland, WA on 1 February 2013 at the Evergreen Hospice Center following complications due to pneumonia.  He was born in Grandview, WA 30 August 1922 to Joseph Bernard and Ida Kathleen (Feehan).  He lived there with his family on their fruit orchard until they moved to Seattle in 1929.  Bernard graduated from Broadway High School in 1940 and later attended the University of Washington.  He enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in 1943, and the following year he both married Joan Langley Drummond (1922-2010) in San Diego, CA, and transferred from the RCAF to the elite U.S. Marine’s Aircraft Group 22 (MAG-22)—known as the “Foreign Legion of Marine Aviation”.  As part of the WWII Pacific Marshall Islands and Okinawa campaigns, Bern served in some of the most intense battles of the war, including the invasion of both Iwo Jima and Okinawa.  In addition to narrowly surviving these battles and a 185 mph typhoon on Okinawa in 1945, he contracted malaria, which continued to plague him for many years.  With his natural aptitude in engineering, combined with his unique military experience, he went on to serve a 40 year long career in the aerospace industry. Following his return from the war he joined the Boeing Company in 1948– first as a surveyor, and eventually became a Project Engineer working on many high-profile projects ranging from the Bomarc and Minuteman ICBM missile system, to NASA’s Apollo, Skylab, Space Shuttle, and Galileo mission to Jupiter.  From 1962-1965 Bern was based at NASA’s Michaud (MAS) site outside New Orleans, and later transferred to the Kennedy Space Center, where he worked and lived until 1974.  Bern excelled as a “Rocket Scientist” during this era and took great pride in the great achievements made through the Apollo program—esp. putting a man on the moon.  Following his transfer back to Boeing’s head office in Seattle he continued to work on national space and defense projects until his retirement in 1987.

Bern will be remembered as both a family man—a loving and providing husband and father, and as a man’s man– a Marine, an aerospace pioneer, and practical can-do problem solver of the highest magnitude.

He is survived by his two sons, Joseph Drew of Daly City, CA and Michael Feehan of Sault Ste. Marie, MI, and his sister Carrie Johnson of Hamilton, MT.  He was preceded in death by his wife, his sisters Rita and Mary, his parents, and his second son, Brian.

Services will be private.

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