July 14, 1939 | Sunnyside, Wa.
Herbert Boone Chittick
Maude Ellen (George) Chittick
Carlene Freda (Gorman) Chittick: (4.18.1962 | Las Cruces, NM)
Sharla Louise Chittick (3.8.1966)
Denny Jeff Chittick (1.10.1968)
Shawna Kay Chittick (5.22.1970)
Quilene Marie Chittick (5.5.1974)
Earliest Linked Ancestor:
Father | Hugh Chittick (b1829)
Mother | Richard George (b1700)
Ireland -> United States
Direct, son of Herbert Boone Chittick
Eldon was born on July 14, 1939 in Sunnyside, Washington to Herbert Boone and Maude Ellen (George) Chittick.
At age 6, due to WW II, he moved to the Oregon coast to Portland, Marshfield, and Bandon, while his dad was in the Coast Guard, then to Coulee Damn, and on to Yakima, Washington. Eldon started school there, finishing the 1st through 3rd grades, before the family relocated to Toppenish, Wash., where he completed the 4th through 6th grades.
A change of careers for his father led to a move to Manchester, Wash., where he lived until he left the area at age 20 to go to University at New Mexico State. University. in Las Cruces, New. Mex.
During his years in Manchester, he pursued both music
and athletics as extra cirricular activities. His
musical prowess led him to playing the bari sax in
the stage/dance band, while his athletic skills led
to a nomination for all-state as a third baseman in
his successful senior year, leading the South Kitsap
High School team with a .456 batting average.
His focus academically was math/science, which became his major at Olympic College in Bremerton, Wash. However, after a year of Engineering classes, and continued involvement in music (including stage, pep, marching,
and concert bands, plus a touring saxophone quartet), Eldon chose to change directions, became involved in
student/campus politics, and was elected A.S.B. President for his Sophomore year, 1958-59.
With a reduced academic load, he also chose to play baseball for the Olympic College team, and enjoyed a successful
season playing second and third bases. He continued his involvement in the music program, as well, including a few money-making, small combo dance jobs on weekends.
After completing the second year of college, Eldon
was unsure what he wanted to do about the future,
took a job as warehouse manager at Parks Furniture store in Port Orchard as a day job. Then three nights a week, he also worked pumping gas at Pritchard's
Shell gas station, while continuing to live at home.
He had developed a wanderlust , so set out to save his money and began planning an adventure to Europe. He
was briefly approached to play semi-pro baseball that first summer, but, after a couple games, decided that his goals did not include the effort (and perhaps the talent) it would take to make a career out of baseball. He contacted an old friend from college and persuaded him to join the adventure.
After about 9 months, Eldon and friend took off across the U.S. by thumb, catching rides as far as Chicago, then a train to Philly for his friend to borrow some money from an uncle. From there to New York by train to jump a Norweigen lumber freighter for an 11(eleven) day crossing of the Atlantic to Oslo. Another train took them to Copenhagen, Denmark, to participate in his older brother's wedding, (which had been inserted into Eldon's itinerary long after his travel plans had been set). Then they were off to Western Europe for the remainder of their 3 month adventure to include 16 countries, at $1.50 each per day to live on. They arrived home with 25 cents between them.
By this time, Eldon realized the need for education
to get ahead, so he contacted some of his college
friends, borrowed $50.00 from his parents, and caught
a ride to Las Cruces, N.Mex. to enroll at N.M.S.U., where he was offered a music scholarship. A "blind luck" opportunity, because the school needed a large
marching band to perform at half-time for the university's nationally ranked football team who were on t.v. regularly. Some favorable references from Olympic opened the door, and his wanderlust made it sound made-to-order.
Picking a major was a challenge, but he'd taken a
psychology course that he'd enjoyed, and "the
rest".as they say."is history". Five
years later, a "chili pepper "bride beside
him, and many musical experiences behind him, including
playing behind Mel Torme', The Four Freshman, and
other names of the 50's and 60's, he emerged with
a Master's Degree in Psychology.
He and Carlene accepted an offer to take a job with a consulting firm in Canada (more wanderlust), called Lamond, Dewhurst and Assoc. But first, they took an extended vacation to Europe in which they covered many of the same countries (and more) that Eldon had previously, but this time in the comfort of a rented car.
They also were fortunate to be able to use the home of a U.S. Army couple stationed in Germany, who were special friends in college, as a home-base from which they could venture out in all directions for days at a time. Many fond memories still remain of that trip, prior to the initiation of his career and the life changing advent of the start of their family.
The Canadian experience included 3 years in Edmonton,
Alberta, and 3 years in Vancouver, B.C. Among the
special experiences during those 6 years were the
births of their first three children, Sharla, Denny
and Shawna. To this day, the kids enjoy dual citizenship.
During two of those years, Eldon taught a night class
at the U. of Alberta, consulted at a Home for Recovering
Alcoholics called the Jellenik House, and worked toward
hopefully completing his PhD. in Psychology. That
was not to be, however.
The flat economy in Canada and Eldon's dad's death from cancer in 1970, led him and the family to decide to relocate, taking a job as Chief Psychologist at the Gateway Community Mental Health Center in Pocatello, Idaho. They resided in Blackfoot, where their 4th child, Quilene, was born.
After 4½ years and climbing the ladder to
Director of the clinic, Eldon realized that his concerns
about working under the frustrating bureaucracies
state and federal governments had proven to be well founded. He resigned and with two Professional associates, started Interfaith Family Counseling
This company grew to include a state-wide network of 5 offices at it's peak. With the encroachment of the health insurance industry, however, which Eldon describes as ".a slithering reptile that devours the people it is licensed to protect", by the time he retired, IFCS had just two offices remaining in Coeur d'Alene and Boise. After launching the practice in Southern Idaho for 2 years, Eldon and the family relocated to CdA for the remaining 22 years before retirement, where they still reside today.
The joy of parenting and marriage for him, he described,
was the endless activity of coaching, playing, and
helping organizations involved with sports, supporting
a wide variety of other activities such as music,
education, modeling, scouting, boating
and animal raising.
Eldon was also active in the community on several boards, including Big Brothers, Compassionate Friends, and Adoptions in Idaho. During the kids growing up years, he was active in the local Methodist church as a choir member and committee member in various capacities.
He and Carlene co-chaired the high school senior's all-night graduation parties on three occasions and chaired one of the committees on the other . Then, the pinnacle was the marriage of his kids , to which he states proudly ."now I have four sons and four daughters", and then the "icing on the cake", the birth of his grandkids.
In retirement, the adventures continue today, with
trips to foreign countries, snowmobiling, white water
rafting, salt water kayaking, and helping grandkids
develop their talents in sports, music, academics, etc. Currently, plans are afoot to purchase a 5th wheel trailer to add to the comfort of traveling around the country. Eldon claims that ."It doesn't get much better than this !". As far as retirement is concerned, he tells everyone that ."this is the best job I've ever had.