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Gayle Norman Pinkney
A memorial service was held Friday at the Willow Glen Funeral Home in San Jose for Gayle Norman Pinkney, 76, of San Jose.He died unexpectedly on Feb. 11, 2011 at Kaiser Permanente Hospital at Santa Teresa.

Born June 6, 1934 in El Centro, Gayle was the youngest of four children of Silas and Ruby Pinkney. In 1946, the family moved to Turlock where he attended Lowell Elementary and Turlock High School where he played football and enjoyed swimming and diving. During his service in the U.S. Navy he was stationed in Guam where he served on a tugboat, was a lifeguard, and played football on the base team. Gayle returned to Turlock and attended Modesto Junior College, playing center on the football team. He transferred to San Jose State University, returning home in the summers to manage the community pool in Hughson and coach the Hughson swim team. At San Jose State he competed as a member of the dive team. His last semester of college brought him back to Turlock as a member of the first graduating class at Stanislaus State. For two years he served as the city of Turlock's recreation director. After moving to San Jose Gayle earned his teaching credential at San Jose State, then taught in the Alum Rock School District for 34 years, both at Cassell Elementary and Pala middle schools. Mr. Pinkney served as head coach of the Eastside Swim Club until it combined with West Coast Aquatics. In retirement, Mr. Pinkney volunteered as a swim coach at the Creekside Cabana Club.

He leaves behind his wife of 49 years, Patricia Pinkney of San Jose; three children, Leslie Schafer, Brian Pinkney and Michael Pinkney; his brother, Dale Pinkney of Turlock; his sister, Virginia Ocken of Turlock; and six grandchildren.

Remembrances may be sent to the Gayle Pinkney Scholarship, Creekside Swim Team, 5640 Scenic Meadow, San Jose CA 95135.

-Ceres Courier/ February 23, 2011