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John Richard Haapoja
Air Force veteran
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John Richard Haapoja, 81, entered into rest on August 13, 2010 in Manteca, California. He was born on June 18, 1929 in Michigan to the late Mr. and Mrs. Arthur and Franny Haapoja. He joins his parents in heaven as well as his siblings Billy, Arthur Jr., Loraine, Laverne and Bernice.

John is survived by his wife of 12 years, Rose Bowcutt Haapoja. His step-children are Bill Bowcutt, Wayne Bowcutt, Donald Bowcutt, Bobby Bowcutt, Rosemary McDaniel, Diane Truchanowicz, and Johnny Bowcutt. His daughters are Kathy Haapoja and Karen Haapoja. He was blessed with 12 grandchildren and 6 great- grandchildren with 2 on the way. In addition John has 5 surviving siblings; Karen Seppa, Robert Haapoja, James Haapoja, Bernadine Turner and Priscilla Dodge.

John made his home with his wife in Manteca for over 9 years. He and his wife lived at Almond Blossom Estates where he was loved and respected by their many neighbors. John served his country proudly through the Air Force as he was honorably discharged in 1954. He retired after 30 years of service from Clickner and Prater of Hayward as a machine operator. He was a lifetime member of the American Legion. John loved to socialize and was a self-proclaimed comedian. He loved telling a great joke to anyone who would listen; most would say he was the #1 comedian around town. His most rewarding times were the times he spent with his grandchildren; he loved teaching them new things and supporting them in all that they did. John was always a giving man; he would never tell a friend, neighbor or family member the word “No.” To remember John is to remember him for his wonderful sense of humor, his love to make others laugh and his compassion to help anyone who was in need. He will be missed.

Mr. Haapoja’s services are being handled by P.L. Fry & Son Funeral Home of Manteca. A celebration memorial will be held on Friday, Aug. 20, 2010 at 11:30 a.m. at P.L. Fry & Son Funeral Home 290 N. Union Road, Manteca. Donations in memory of John can be sent to the American Legion. An on-line guest book/ tribute wall is available for special messages and condolences at       
Manteca (Calif.) Bulletin
Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2010