Lester Alden “Al” Fort, age 78, ended his courageous fight with cancer on January 13, 2016 as he passed peacefully from our lives. He was at his home surrounded by his loving family. He will be remembered by all who knew him for his quick-witted humor, his athleticism, his adventurous spirit, his contagious smile and most of all for his incredible love, devotion, and unfailing support to his family and friends. He brought life and humor to our lives and will be deeply missed.
Lester “Al” was born in Comanche, Oklahoma, then moved with his parents to California where he attended Richgrove Grammar School through the eighth grade; started his Freshman year of high school at Delano High, then moved to Avandale, Arizona for the remainder of his Freshman year. In 1953 the family moved to Watsonville, California where Les was not only able to complete his high school years, but excelled at both track and basketball. He was voted All League at Watsonville High School for basketball. He served honorably in the United States Navy stationed at Long Beach, California. He was a fireman and served on a minesweeper the USS Yarnell. In November 1959, in Carson City, Nevada, he married Carole Jean Bettencourt. They started a family in Watsonville, California and he eventually moved the family to Union City, California to pursue his career with PG&E.
Lester “Al” worked with PG&E for 34 years. He worked on various projects in areas such as Needles, Bakersfield, Fresno, Monterey, Moss Landing, and finally Union City, where he retired in 1993. During his career with PG&E, he was a painter, an inspector, a working foreman, and an Area Manager within the General Construction Department. After retiring from PG&E, he and Carole moved to Manteca to be closer to his children and grandchildren. His adventurous spirit took him RVing with a large group of family and friends. He was an active member of the SIR’s and an avid golfer. If he wasn’t RVing, taking a long walk/run around the neighborhood, or golfing and entertaining the rest of the foursome! he would be supporting his grandchildren in their many activities—baseball games, hockey games, softball. You name it, if there was a family activity, Les was there to cheer on, to add humor, and most of all to give his total love and support.
His smile and his wit charmed everyone who had the privilege to meet him, including the doctors and nurses who cared for him.
As his body began to fail his humor and his positive attitude always prevailed.
Lester leaves behind his wife of 56 years Carole (Bettencourt) Fort; his sons; Ronald Fort of Manteca and Mark Fort (JaNell Cockrell) of Tracy; his daughter Cathy (Fort) Currigan (Conan) of Manteca. He leaves six wonderful grandchildren that he was so proud of—Kristy Fort, Ashley Fort, Alison Fort, Kaylah Fort, Wesley Currigan, Zachary Currigan; and many nieces and nephews that adore him.
He is survived by brothers Wayne Fort (Jane) of Watsonville and Gary Fort (Debbie) of Watsonville; his sister Helen (Fort) Bixler of Watsonville; his sister-in-law Betty (Christian) Fort of Watsonville and by his brother-in-law Ken Bettencourt (Kathy) of Manteca.
Lester was preceded in death by his father, Thurman Fort, his mother Lillian (Beasley) Fort, and brother Albert Fort.
A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, March 12th 2:00 p.m. VFW / Moffat Community Center, 580 Moffat Blvd, Manteca.
Manteca (Calif.) Bulletin
Wednesday, January 27, 2016