Soldotna resident Claude Eugene "Bigfoot" Bradford died at Central Peninsula General Hospital on Friday, May 4, 2001, after a battle with cancer. He was 55.
A memorial service is planned for Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Soldotna High School Auditorium. Pastor Robert Reasner will officiate. Veterans of Foreign Wars honors will be rendered and Mr. Bradford's friends and family are invited and encouraged to share personal stories and experiences during the memorial service.
Mr. Bradford was born on July 28, 1945, in Paducah, Texas. He was a Vietnam War veteran and was honorably discharged from the Army in November 1972. He lived in Soldotna since moving to Alaska in 1971. He worked for Alaska Communications Systems as a telephone installer.
Mr. Bradford was an active member and former president of the Peninsula Sled Dog and Racing Association and was a lifetime member of the Elks, Am Vets and the VFW. He enjoyed dog mushing, hunting, fishing, gardening and was a "grand master" of garage sale-ing.
"Claude will be remembered for his king-size heart of gold, sunshine smile and boundless sense of humor. He genuinely expressed great love for his family and friends and touched the lives of countless people with his generous spirit and willingness to lend a helping hand," his family said.
"We have all been wonderfully blessed to know and love such a man as Claude. We will miss him every day and hold him in our hearts forever."
Mr. Bradford is survived by his wife, Cary; mother, Minnie Sneed; brother, Clyde; sisters Debbie, Geneva and Kathy; children Jason Bradford, Stacie Mraz, Oty Anderson, Jackie and Jayson Kempf, Margaret Girves, James Moore, Roland and Kathryn James, Lisa Clark and Chelline Larsen; 16 grandchildren; and many extended family members in the Kenai Peninsula area and Oregon.
Arrangements were made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel.
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