YOKOSUKA, Japan —
Former U.S. Navy Officer Heather Chae (Courtney) Moburg, age 30, a native of Atascocita and Spring, Texas, passed away of possibly post-childbirth complications Thursday, Aug. 15, in Yokosuka, Japan. Her husband, Andy, who is still in the U.S. Navy, and their 2-1/2-month-old baby boy, Ryan, are currently still in Yokosuka.
Heather was the daughter of Tulsa area native and Tahlequah, Okla. resident Gary D. Courtney and Spring resident Younae (Choi) Courtney Baltzley, a native of Seoul, South Korea. She also has many friends in the Keys-Lake Tenkiller area near Tahlequah, where she, as a young girl of 11 to 16, visited her father during summers, went cave exploring, sailing, and canoeing, flew a Cessna, and earned her SCUBA certification in Cookson.
Heather’s husband, Andy, is the son of Dean Moburg. He lives in Lansing, Kan., with his wife, Janelle, and their children: Zach-ary, Samantha and McKenzie Moburg. Andy’s Mother, Rayma Moburg, lives in Kansas City, Mo. His brother, Jason, and his wife, Becky live in Kansas City, Mo., with their children: Emma Moburg, Charlie Moburg, Kenton Unruh and Cooper Unruh. Andy’s grandfather, Charles Rusher, also lives in Kansas City, Mo.
In addition to her parents, husband, and baby son, she is survived by her brother, Whittaker Courtney, of Spring, and two half-sisters, Kimberly (Courtney) Taylor, of Tulsa, and Kara (Courtney) Ward, of Skiatook, Okla.
Other members of her family include: a maternal aunt, Soonju Childress, of Broken Arrow; a maternal uncle Dr. Soon Sop Choi, D.D.S., of Los Angeles; her grandfather, Chil Bong Choi, of Seoul; and a paternal aunt, Judy (Courtney) Brown, of Broken Arrow.
On her arts side, at ages 6 and 7, Heather took piano and ballet lessons, near her home by Lake Houston. She was known to frequently amaze passersby at Humble’s Deerbrook Mall, by sitting down at a piano by the entrance to the Sherman Clay store, and playing her father’s favorite song, “Danny Boy,” when her feet wouldn’t yet reach the pedals.
Heather was raised as an outdoor, adventurous person. She served as a Girl Scout camp counselor, as a teenager. In 1998, at age 15, and again the next year, Heather helped her father and brother organize and carry out two-week backpacking trips off the middle of the old steam train route between Durango and Silverton, Colo., into the 14,000-foot peaks of the San Juan Mountains.
Heather attended Klein High School in Spring, Texas, graduating in 2001. While a student there, she served as an editor of the school newspaper, and played clarinet in marching band. After 11th grade, she was honored to work a summer as one of only four students recommended to participate, with pay, in the Genome scientific project, to map the human body through DNA. During high school, Heather also received an award for over 1,000 hours as a “Candy Striper” volunteer, at Northwest Medical Center, where she was born.
After graduating in 2005, with honors, from the University of Texas in Austin, she received her officer’s commission as an Ensign in the U.S. Navy. Her military service included two years as the combat information officer of a guided missile cruiser and two years as the navigator of a destroyer, in the North Pacific, while based in Yokosuka, Japan. Heather was also a graduate of the U.S. Navy Surface Warfare Officers School, in Newport, R.I.
Resigning her commission in the U.S. Navy and returning to the states at San Diego in 2010, she set out on her intentional plan to obtain an advanced degree and to marry and have a family.
In May 2010, she married her sweetheart, whom she had met in Japan, Andrew Moburg, in a wedding on the beach at Coronado Island. Andy was model manager over all the Navy search and rescue teams instructors. Heather received her master’s degree from San Diego State University, in 2012.
Immediately after receiving her graduate degree, her husband Andy was transferred back to Japan, to begin training for a new career in the Navy, as a harbormaster.
Services, to be held stateside in Spring, north of Houston, are to be announced, pending the completion of the Navy NCIS standard investigation of her death, where she died at home alone while caring for their baby.
Heather was loved and respected by all who knew her, and her wit, intellect, grace, dignity, compassion, adventurous spirit, and strength will be sorely missed by her family and friends, around the globe. In her brief 30 years, she accomplished a lot, with her careful planning and hard work.
Any inquiries should be directed via e-mail to her father, at firstname.lastname@example.org.