Gene Woods Stivers of San Clemente, California, passed away peacefully at his home on February 18, 2023, surrounded by his loving family.
Gene was born on December 8, 1946 and spent his life in and around San Clemente. His childhood was spent surfing, fishing, gardening, and caring for countless animals. Gene loved the beach and would grow to become a tremendous waterman. He made his mark early on as a San Clemente lifeguard in the 1960’s and was awarded the title of the city’s first “Lifeguard of the Year”.
Heroism would become a common theme in Gene’s life. When the Dana Point Harbor was constructed, he joined the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, working Harbor Patrol. An intuitive emergency responder, he was involved in countless rescues and is credited with saving many lives.
His love of the sea and boats would finally lead him to a life of commercial fishing, mainly lobsters, operating out of the Dana Point Harbor for 55 years.
If you were lucky enough to be in his company, he would regale you with stories with a quick wit and a wry sense of humor of many adventures and memories of a life full to the brim.
Gene will forever be remembered as the life of the party, a local legend, and a courageous hero, with the most generous heart. There will never be another quite like him and he will be profoundly missed.
He is survived by three daughters: Gina, Maile, and Ellie Stivers; siblings Michael and Peter Wright, Nancy Byrne and their children; his late sister Susie’s children, David and Craig Louden; and cousin Patrice Rutledge among a large extended family and countless friends.
All friends are invited to a Celebration of Life gathering on March 23, 2023 at 2:30pm in the Dana Point Harbor near Jon’s Fish Market.
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