Family and friends of Harold Mortz joined in a surprise birthday party on Nov. 1, 2015, at the Adventist Community Services Center in Salem, Ore., to honor his 90th birthday. Family members came from Illinois, California and Washington. His daughters and grandson from Salem, Ore., and his son from California were there too.
He was born Oct. 31, 1925. Harold served in the U.S. Army during World War II, after which he lived in southern California, earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pacific Bible Seminary and later a master's degree in education from Cal State in Los Angeles. He pastored several churches and taught middle school. He retired in 1991 from Firestone Tire Company in South Gate, Calif., after 32 years.
He and his second wife moved to Grants Pass, Ore. He became a member of the Rogue River (Ore.) Church in 1998 while living in Grants Pass. He was active in the church and became an elder in 2000. He volunteered tutoring students in the GED program at Rogue Community College.
After his wife died, he moved to Salem in 2006 to live with Sylvia Vogel and Linda Mortz, his daughters. He joined the Salem Central Church by transfer of membership. He was elected an elder in 2007 and taught a Sabbath School class for several years. He also tutored students at Livingston Adventist Academy.
Harold has endeared himself to the Salem Central Church family by his friendliness and his ready smile. He attends church services regularly and other church activities when transportation is available.