SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Ellis A. Roakes of San Diego, Calif., died April 6.

He was born in Auburn, June 17, 1924, the son of Merritt and Lillian (Pitman) Roakes, he graduated from Edward Little High School. He served in the Army during World War II in India, Burma and China as part of the 97th Infantry.

In 1949, he married Jacqueline Eaton. They were married for five years and had one child. He later married Amelia Vasquez Briggs. They were married for 13 years. She died in 1990.

He earned an aircraft mechanic certificate from Roosevelt Aviation School on Long Island. He, his wife and baby daughter camped their way to California in 1952 to pursue a career in aviation. In his 35 years with Convair/General Dynamics, he rose from a machinist in tool and die to become an aeronautical engineer, working on the Lunar Landing Module, the DC-10, the space shuttle, the Tomahawk and several fighter jets.

He was very active at Holy Trinity Church, until 1977, teaching catechism. From 1977, he was active at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church. He was an officer in the Legion of Mary and a long-time member of the Third Order of Franciscans. His faith spread joy to all.

He is survived by a daughter, Janice (Roakes) Hubbell of Solvang, Calif.; and his brother, Robert Roakes and his wife, Natalie, of Oxford.

He was predeceased by his sister, Beverly Roakes Holman.

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