Ronald Eugene Paulson, aged 83, passed away quietly on February 19, 2021. He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Lenore, two children, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. He will be laid to rest at the Eastern Shore Veterans Cemetery in Hurlock, Maryland. A memorial service will be scheduled at a later date.
The only child of Gene and Beulah Paulson, Ron was born and grew up in St. Charles, Illinois. After graduating from St. Charles High School in 1955, he joined the Navy as a payroll specialist (a role exceeded in popularity among his fellow sailors only by the mess cook), and was first deployed on the destroyer USS Gurke. Despite being at sea, he maintained his relationship with his high-school sweetheart, Lenore Engstrom, whom he married in 1959.
Ron and Lee met in 1952 as members of a local accordion band, and dated throughout high school. While Ron was serving at sea, Lee worked at Mooseheart outside Chicago, and in 1959 the newlyweds moved to San Diego, where their first child, David, was born.
After a brief stay in the Pacific Northwest, Ron deployed to Tachikawa AFB in Japan, where daughter Lauren was born. Assignments in central California and Florida led the Navy Chief and his family to a Seabee unit in Washington DC. After retiring from military service, he began his second career with the US Foreign Service at the Department of State, working in diplomatic security, and ultimately retiring in 2000.
An avid woodworker, Ron was a long-time member of the Capital Area Woodturners, and made many toys, games, furniture, and art pieces, which he insisted on giving away to friends and family. He also provided sage advice to countless strangers, who never remained strangers for long after encountering Ron in a checkout line at the pharmacy or grocery or bank. An excellent athlete, Ron remained active in retirement, playing softball on many recreational senior teams. Ron distributed tens of thousands of neighborhood newsletters for the Springfield Civic Association, and schlepped thousands of pounds of accordions for the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society in his antique Volvo with the “TERMIT” license plate.
Combining a quick wit and a jolly personality, Ron – known simply as “P” to everyone who loved him -- was hard-working, honest, generously unselfish, loving, considerate, and devoted. A life-long fan of the Kingston Trio, the Mills Brothers, and the Big Bopper, we’ll always imagine P nodding along to “Chantilly Lace” or “Across the Alley from the Alamo” with the “Seabee in the Sky”.