Warren Houck, pilot and Realtor, dies at 80
Warren P. Houck of Menlo Park, Calif., passed away July 5. He was 80. Born and raised in Seattle, Wash., Houck was an accomplished magician by age 14 and was named the first-place winner of the 1939 Pacific Coast Association of Magicians’ competition by Harry Houdini’s wife.
Upon graduation in 1943 from Roosevelt High School in Seattle, Houck, like many of his graduating class, joined the military; forty-three members of his graduating class died in World War II. Houck became an Air Force fighter pilot and, on one occasion after the war, he had a dogfight with the German fighter ace Erich Hartmann, considered the most decorated fighter pilot of all time. Houck won the fight and upon landing, Hartmann said to Warren, “You flew as though you and the plane were one.” In 1949, as a U.S Air Force public relations officer in Denver, Houck had to hire models for photo shoots. It was during this assignment that he met his wife of 54 years, Maurine J. Houck, who died in 2004.
After living in San Francisco, Japan, Germany and Alaska, Houck, his wife and their three children moved to Menlo Park, where Houck received a masters degree in business from Pepperdine University and began a new career as a real estate broker. Houck’s hobbies and interests included tennis, skiing and flying. Before her death, he and his wife traveled extensively.
Houck is survived by his three children, Michael, Kasey and Elizabeth; four grandchildren, Christian, John Michael, Henry and Arden; sister Patricia Holvick; and his nieces and nephews, Valerie, Christine, Debbie, Dave, Jim, John and Dan. Today, Houck’s ashes will be joined with his wife’s in a private ceremony in the mountains surrounding Vail. A U.S Air Force honor guard from Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs will attend the ceremony.