Cheney Free Press -

Elwin Clifford Gresham


Last updated 6/4/2020 at 7:01pm

Elwin Clifford Gresham

The Lord called Elwin Clifford Gresham to heaven on Thursday, May 21, 2020. Cliff Gresham was born in the deep woods of Sandpoint, Idaho on July 26, 1929. His parents were Clifford Bryan Gresham and Sarah Irene (Ludrick) Gresham. He had one older brother, Grant, who was killed in an accident that also injured Cliff at age nine. In reflecting on Cliff's life, he was a man who worked hard to better himself as illustrated in his military career, marriage, family life and in his church and community work.

In September 1947, Cliff joined the Air Force and was stationed at McCord AFB, in Tacoma. Later, in Germany he was part of the Berlin Airlift. The Air Force noticed Cliff's work ethic and leadership skills and he was selected for Officer's Training School in 1955.He earned his bachelor of science degree from the University of Omaha and his master's degree from University of Colorado. He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal.

Over his career he was stationed at 14 different bases and continued to advance on rank. In 1970, he did a tour in Da Nang, Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star. He retired as a Lt. Colonel having given 27 years of service to our country.

In 1950, Cliff met and married his wife to be Jean Davis, and they were looking forward to celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary this year. In 1952 their daughter Linda was born in Colorado Springs, Colo. Linda and John, reside in the Cheney area. Steve was born during their tour in Naples Italy in 1954. Steve and Blanca live in Boonville, Calif. Cathy was born in 1957 at March AFB, Calif. She and Rich reside in the Colfax, Wash. area. Their son Doug was born in Agana, Guam in 1961. He and Carol live in Seattle.

Cliff had six grandchildren, and was preceded in death by his granddaughter, Christina. Cliff was blessed with eight great-grandchildren. The family spent time camping in different parts of the United States depending on where they were stationed. Cliff enjoyed gardening, square dancing, genealogy, and woodworking.

The Gresham's have belonged to Emmanuel Lutheran Church since they moved to Cheney 43 years ago. Over the years, Cliff served on the church council in almost all of the positions.

He was also a member and president of the Cheney Kiwanis. One of his proudest achievements was as the Founding President of the Cheney Care Center Associated Fund Raising Drive. He, along with other leaders in town and employees of the Center, worked to build the new Cheney Care Center that exists today.

Life won't be quite the same for anyone who truly knew and loved Cliff. He certainly left his mark here on Earth!

In lieu of flowers please send donations to Emmanuel Lutheran Church, 639 Elm St., Cheney, WA 99004. Online guestbook at


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