Phillip John Stange died at his home in Beaumont on Feb. 5.
He was 77.
Phil was born in Bell, Calif. on June 11, 1942.
His childhood was spent in Hemet and San Jacinto.
He and his twin brother Gary Stange enjoyed climbing, exploring and learning about the flora and fauna near the Ramona Bowl in Hemet.
As high school students, they both made the dangerous hike twice to whitewash the historic San Jacinto “S” — still faintly visible on North Mountain.
Phil graduated from San Jacinto High School in 1960 and soon after joined the Navy.
He was active military for seven years as an electronics technician, first class, and later a fire technician.
He was assigned to the WWII destroyer USS Shield and later the USS Prebble and USS Jouett.
Phil was one of a handful of experts trained the Navy’s experimental 3D radar technology and he continued to expand his knowledge at bases along the West Coast through the 60s.
He was stationed in Bremerton, Wash. and moved to several cities in California including Chula Vista, Glendale, Panorama City and Northridge.
Phil later was assigned to teach about radar systems and emerging computer technology at the Mare Island Naval Shipyard’s new school in Vallejo, Calif.
Phil met Sharon Lowry (Sherri Domenigoni of Hemet) while he was teaching at Mare Island and they were married in 1966.
Their son Brian was born in Bremerton, Wash. in 1967; and daughter Karla was born in Van Nuys in 1969.
The couple was married for 11 years and divorced in 1977.
After honorable discharge from the Navy in 1972, Phil purchased a house in Hemet through the G.I. bill.
His illustrious 31-year civilian career included working as an electrical engineering aide for Gilfillan in Los Angeles, which became ITT.
He later taught electronics and radar systems at the Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Base.
Phil’s career culminated in working for the Federal Aviation Administration at Edwards Air Force Base in Lancaster.
The highlight of his career was developing a new radar system called Re-host, which tracked aerial maneuvers and prevented crashes between sophisticated military planes that flew exercises underneath big commercial airliners.
Phil retired in 2003 and moved to Beaumont, where he enjoyed golfing, gardening, music, reading and telling jokes.
He is survived by his twin brother Gary Stange; children Brian Stange and Karla (Stange) Sluis; six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
A celebration of life will be held Saturday, Feb. 15 at 2 p.m. at Weaver Mortuary & Crematory in Beaumont.