Bruner, Howard Dean

HOWARD DEAN BRUNER Dean passed away December 21, 2015. Dean was born December 25, 1946 in Elma Washington to Alice and Dean Bruner. Dean was the oldest of three boys. After residing in the states of Washington and Oregon for a short period of time, the family made its way to California to seek employment with Pacific Lumber Company, and they resided at Holmes Flat. This is where Dean spent his first few years of school, building his roots in Humboldt County. The family eventually moved to Stafford where his favorite childhood memories were made. Dean enjoyed swimming and hunting, where he was very successful bringing home dinner for the family. As a teenager living in Pepperwood, Dean got his first real job at the local gas station, earning himself enough money to purchase his first car, which he was very proud of. Dean’s time in Pepperwood came to an abrupt halt with the 1964 flood. Dean and his father were busy helping the neighbors secure their belongings risking everything the family owned. After graduating high school, as a young adult Dean worked at Fortuna Veneer and spent the summer working for CDF fighting fires in the Garberville area. Eventually joining the National Guard to serve his Country. In 1969, Dean lost his youngest brother Mark to the Vietnam War. Dean relocated to the state of Washington as he worked in several mills in the Lake Quinalt area. Dean was tired of taking orders from people so he joined his cousin thinning trees. He soon after started his company Shack Bolts. Dean’s hard work ethic and drive guided him throughout the Western United States as he became the second biggest tree planter in the western states: “and I’m not talking by weight, Ha Ha”. He was managing crews in Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon and California. This became the perfect job for Dean because he loved hiring his friends and especially driving from state to state. Dean’s love for Humboldt County brought him back to Holmes Flat where he bought property with the love of his life Cathy Cacci. The plan was to build their dream house together. Unfortunately prior to the completion Cathy lost her life as she battled cancer. Dean went on to complete the house and his two sons Darren and Doug came to reside with him. Dean enjoyed summer barbeques and winter trips to Cabo San Lucas. Dean also enjoyed fishing, gambling and taking long drives, but his most favorite thing was spending time with his grandson Waylon. The family would like to give a special thanks to the staff at UCSF dialysis and Dean’s caregivers along with friends Linda and Josafena. Services will be held at Goble Funeral Home in Fortuna, Saturday January 9, 2016 at 11 :00 am. The family would like to invite everyone to celebrate his life following the services at Rio Dell Fireman’s Hall. Please sign the guestbook at under obituaries.

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