Milton Madison Hinkle was truly one of a kind, who entertained those he met with his colorful stories and slogans such as “Am I right or Amarillo?” Born on Christmas Eve 1925 in Winters, Texas, he grew up working on the family farm with his beloved dog, Ring. He graduated from Godley High School and joined the United States Merchant Navy shortly after graduating from high school, until 1949. While in the United States Merchant Navy, he served as a firefighter on six Liberty ships and a Navy T-2 tanker carrying fuel. and supplies to American troops, in blackout conditions under threat from German submarines. The merchant navy transported it to Poland, Ireland, England, Japan, Hawaii, Germany and through the Panama Canal. As a United States Merchant Navy who served in World War II, he was finally granted American Veteran status in 1988 in recognition of his service to the United States during World War II.
After completing his service in the US Merchant Navy, Milton married Joyce Craven in 1949, a marriage that lasted 64 years, until Joyce passed away in 2014. Together they raised two children, “Boo” and “Burr Near Hobby Airport, where Milton worked as an aircraft mechanic, first for his brother’s aircraft maintenance business, before later starting his own business, Hinkle Maintenance. He has serviced Lockheed Jet Stars, Douglas DC-3 and Convair planes, including planes for Lyndon B. Johnson and Howard Hughes. According to those who worked with him, he could fix everything. After his retirement from aircraft maintenance, he enjoyed speeding through Houston in his white 1964 VW Beetle, exploring flea markets and eating at local restaurants.
Milton was cunning, mechanically inclined, writer, artist, and inventor. He wrote a novel about the adventures of a sailor on the high seas and kept a daily journal for 40 years. His family has a collection of his daily journals where he wrote about the events of daily life and major historical events. Even in his 90s, he could be found tinkering with his garage or modifying something in the house in an effort to make it better. Milton also loved westerns, especially Gunsmoke. He kept a box of M & M’s near his recliner, which he nibbled at while watching his favorite westerns. He enjoyed the company of his family and friends and looked forward to visits so that he could share his stories.
Milton was predeceased by his parents; his wife Joyce Craven; and a baby girl Rita Jo Hinkle. He leaves behind to cherish his loving memory, his children Milton “Burr” Keith Hinkle and his wife Deleslyn of Richmond, Texas and Theresa “Boo” Hinkle Huffman and her husband Tommy of Dayton, Texas; her grandchildren Travis Huffman of Pearland, Tracie Mazzu and her husband Sam of Houston, Jennifer Hinkle Meza and her husband Sam of Katy and Katelyn Hinkle of Cypress; her great-grandchildren Tyler Huffman of Baytown and Georgia Mazzu of Houston; her siblings Freida “Nick” Creel of Cullman, Alabama, Frances “Dude” Hernandez of San Angelo, Texas, and John “Mouse” Alton Hinkle of Cullman, Alabama; and a host of other loving relatives and friends.
Friends are invited to visit family at 10 a.m. on Saturday, October 2, 2021, in the Chapel of Sterling Funeral Home, 602 N. Main Street in Dayton. A memorial service celebrating Milton’s life will begin at 11 a.m., with Bro. Danny Biddy officiating. A private family burial will be held at Palms Memorial Park cemetery in Dayton.
Milton’s family would like to express their gratitude to every caregiver and medical staff at Swan Manor and Faith Community Hospice. Your kindness, patience and constant care for him have never gone unnoticed.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in Milton’s honor to the charity of your choice.
Condolences can be shared online with family by visiting http: //www.SterlingFuneralHome
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