West Seattle Blog... » Obituaries http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Fri, 29 May 2015 05:14:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 Celebration of life Saturday for Peggy McCormack, 1930-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/05/celebration-of-life-saturday-for-peggy-mccormack-1930-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/05/celebration-of-life-saturday-for-peggy-mccormack-1930-2015/#comments Wed, 27 May 2015 16:00:09 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=311525 A celebration-of-life memorial service is planned this Saturday (May 30th) for Peggy McCormack, who you might have known as a preschool teacher, or a church organist – just two of the many aspects of her life, detailed by her family in this remembrance:

Margaret Anne (“Peggy”) Kemp McCormack, 84, passed away peacefully at home on April 11, 2015. Peggy was the elder of two girls born to Charles William & Irene Carrick Kemp. Her early years were spent in both Spirit Lake, ID, and in Clarkston, and her adolescence on the west coast in Washington. After college graduation, she married Clarence (“Larry”) McCormack in 1952 and spent a happy life with him in West Seattle, where he taught science at Madison Junior High School and ultimately predeceased her in 2007.

Peggy was a gifted musician. She and her sister were singing on their grandfather’s radio show in Lewiston, Idaho, by the time they were not quite two and three years old. At that age, they had no idea that they were “performing”, but soon they had mastered a number of instruments, and continued to perform throughout their school years whenever and wherever they were asked. Peggy played piano, French horn and clarinet, but usually accompanied her sister, a flautist. Both girls entered and won contests regularly throughout the Pacific Northwest. They came from a very musical family, and Peggy always shrugged and said, ‘That’s just how it was. We didn’t think anything about it.’

However, by the time she went to college, Peggy was studying the organ. She had played her first church service at the age of 8 when her mother, the regular church pianist, was too ill to get to church, and apparently Peggy had a grand time that day. By the time she graduated from college, she was playing concerts or recitals almost every week. As soon as she and Larry settled in Seattle, she began playing for a number of different churches.

When her daughter was about 5 years old, Peggy agreed to be the organist at Tibbetts Methodist Church, where she played for the grand opening of the new sanctuary and then continued as the organist for around twenty years. Subsequently, she played both organ and piano for Highland Park United Methodist Church, and later for Highline UMC. Music and playing in praise of the Lord’s creation and His love were an integral part of who she was. Any time she was stressed, distressed, ill, or otherwise indisposed, her first need was to play music, and her family always knew she was on the road to recovery as soon as she sat down at the piano.

One of her other dear joys in music was directing a handbell choir that flourished for something between 25 and 30 years. Eventually they became known as the “Highlanders” and traveled quite a bit to perform and attend workshops, as well as frequent performances in their home church (Highland Park UMC) both for services and high holidays.

Peg also always sought both to learn new things and to teach others in ways that were creative, experiential, and personally meaningful to them. She always described herself as having been born with what she called an intense “need to know” (which included almost everything in very diverse areas of study and skill). This resulted in numerous certifications and awards, as well as degrees from Centralia College and Washington State (WSC) and a master’s degree from the University of Washington. (However, if she were to read this life summary, Peggy would hasten to add that she was ALWAYS a Washington State Cougar at heart!)

She had some interesting niches of study and skill ~ for example, she chose to learn parliamentary law, and became a National Registered Parliamentarian. The knowledge and skills required for this certification are meticulous, demanding, and unforgiving. Being Peggy, she passed on her first attempt, but she always maintained that the test she had to write to earn those credentials was harder than any test she took in her master’s program.

Another niche was her decades of research into the Methodist Episcopal Church, South in the Pacific Northwest. She ultimately acquired a reputation as the expert in this area of history. Her grandfather had been a Methodist minister and, as he was dear to her, his personal history was the impetus for years and years of ardent inquiry and study in Washington, Oregon, Montana, and beyond.

Professionally, Peggy spent most of her career as an instructor in Early Childhood Education and working with the Parent Cooperative Preschools in West Seattle and beyond. She started at Seattle Central Community College Campus, and moved to the South Seattle campus when it opened, along with only two other members of the Home & Family Life Department from the Central Campus. She taught several topics in Early Childhood Education, and also always worked with the preschools as a parent and adult educator, supporting each preschool from “behind the scenes”. Working with students, children, teachers, parents and families was a great joy to her throughout her career. One of her saddened friends recently told Peg’s daughter that, “Hundreds of kids in West Seattle were the beneficiaries of Peggy’s teaching.”

As a church historian, she became a member of the General United Methodist Church Historical Society and both the Pacific Northwest and the Conference General Commission on Archives and History of the United Methodist Church. She loved what she was doing: from research to sharing to learning and then teaching. She and her daughter faithfully attended national conventions year after year while she was able to travel.

She was a Camp Fire leader when her daughter was young; spent decades researching family genealogy; and always, she was a musician. She and a dear friend directed several musicals for children telling biblical stories during a number of different years, and on behalf of Camp Fire, they also found time to direct Christmas caroling at Southcenter Mall for many years.

Before retirement, Peg was presented with a Lifelong Learning Award by the Seattle Community College District. This award was bestowed with the idea that she could go “anywhere in the world she chose” to “study any topic she could imagine”, and Peggy was thrilled. She promptly arranged to go to Drew University in New Jersey where she was able to continue research into one of her “passions” already mentioned here: the history of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in the Pacific Northwest. When the “locals” in New Jersey heard that she could have gone anywhere in the world, they were rather loudly horrified, and several people assured her that she had come to “the armpit of the world.” However, Peggy had a great time, and came home with several more boxes of research to be added to the archive of material on this topic that she had already accumulated.

Peg continued to pursue multiple diverse areas of study and skill with humor and delight for as long as she was able, and always, whatever she did was in service to her Lord. After a series of mishaps, fractures, and surgeries, for the past two and a half years she was mostly at home with her daughter, where her health steadily declined as she gradually faded away due to the ravages of dementia co-occurring with a number of other health concerns.

Peg is survived by her daughter, Katharine E. McCormack of Seattle; son, Bruce A. McCormack (Julie) of Seattle; niece, Irene Arnold Kozumplik (Bob) of Frederic, Wisconsin; nephew, D. Scott Arnold of Frederic, Wisconsin; and numerous extended family members. She is preceded in death by her husband of 54 years, her sister Patricia Irene Kemp Sevey, and niece Julie Anne Arnold. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Highline United Methodist Church Music Department or to the PNW Conference of the United Methodist Church (Archives & History), PO Box 13650; Des Moines, WA 98198.

A MEMORIAL CELEBRATION OF LIFE WILL BE HELD ON SATURDAY, MAY 30th, at 1:00 P.M. at Highline United Methodist Church at 13015 1st Ave S. in Burien; (206) 241-5520.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial service next Friday for Margaret A. Skube, 1954-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/05/memorial-service-next-friday-for-margaret-a-skube-1954-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/05/memorial-service-next-friday-for-margaret-a-skube-1954-2015/#comments Sun, 10 May 2015 23:00:54 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=309870 Family and friends will gather Friday (May 15th) to remember Margaret Skube, who died in February at age 60. Here’s the remembrance they’re sharing with the community:

Margaret Ann Skube passed away on February 27th, 2015, surrounded by her family.

She was born in West Seattle on October 10, 1954 to Galina and Noel (Cam) Skube. She attended Alki Elementary and Madison Junior High, and graduated from West Seattle High School with the class of 1972.

After working as a cook on cargo ships to Alaska with Western Pioneer for many years, she moved to Stanwood, WA, where she raised her daughter Calley.

Calley and her husband, Lane, blessed Margaret by giving her three beautiful grandchildren, Adalynn, Fionnegan, and Gillian. They were the light of her life.

Margaret will be remembered for her love of life, willingness to try just about anything, and for living her life at 100% in all she did. Margaret loved to garden, cook, swim, and to play games. She loved to travel, meet people, and to learn new things. She lived her life just the way she wanted to and always hoped for a better day. She certainly had her own sense of style, and always brought a change of clothes, since “anything could happen.” She was a fun-loving, positive, and hopeful woman.

Besides her daughter’s family, she leaves behind her dad, Cam, her niece Elle, and nephew Seth. She was preceded in death by her mother Galina and her brother Peter. She will be deeply missed by her many friends and her beloved Beaver Damn Campout girlfriends.

Her celebration of life will be Friday afternoon, May 15, 2015 from 11:00 – 2:00 at the Lakewood Seward Park Community Club, 4916 S. Angeline St.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Services planned May 15th for James D. Finnie, 1946-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/services-planned-may-15th-for-james-d-finnie-1946-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/services-planned-may-15th-for-james-d-finnie-1946-2015/#comments Sun, 19 Apr 2015 21:21:13 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=307587 A memorial service and celebration of life are planned May 15th for James D. Finnie, 68, whose family is sharing this remembrance:

The family of Jim Finnie is sad to announce his passing on March 30, 2015, after a long journey with early-onset Alzheimer’s. Jim was born in West Seattle on April 19, 1946, to Walt and Millie Finnie, the youngest of their five children.

After graduation from West Seattle High School in 1964, Jim married Marge in 1965 while they were attending Western Washington State College, only to have the military decide they needed him a short time later. He served in the US Army from 1966-69, most of that time in Germany, where he and Marge enjoyed many adventures together.

In 1975, Jim began his career as a Seattle firefighter, and always felt fortunate to be paid to do something he loved so much. The majority of his career was served at local Station 32.

Outside of work, Jim had many interests and skills- woodworking, golf, competitive shooting, and countless hours out on the Sound, with a fishing pole in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other (his idea of heaven!). He had a top-notch “Mr Fix-It” ability that led us all to believe there was nothing he couldn’t do. To all that he did, he brought his quirky sense of humor, and a smile, to those around him.

He was a loving and supportive husband and father, which led him to spend many years working with the Boy Scouts and driving the Kennedy High School band bus to assorted parades and retreats. He was enormously proud of his children.

He leaves behind his beloved wife Marge, and children Dave (Christy) Finnie and Krista (David) Hume. Six grandchildren: Alexa, Jessica, Sienna, Elijah, Rebecca, and Joshua. Predeceased by his parents and sister, Delores, and survived by brothers Bob (Durlyn) and Walt (Sharon) and sister Linda (Norm) Nelson.

Services to be held May 15, 1:00 pm, at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, followed by a celebration of life at the West Seattle Golf Course clubhouse, 2:30 pm. Suggested memorials to Medic One or West Seattle High School Alumni Association Scholarship fund.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial on Wednesday for Barbara Cough Shea, 1930-2015: ‘Her generous spirit and love of fun live on’ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-on-wednesday-for-barbara-cough-shea-1930-2015-her-generous-spirit-and-love-of-fun-live-on/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-on-wednesday-for-barbara-cough-shea-1930-2015-her-generous-spirit-and-love-of-fun-live-on/#comments Mon, 13 Apr 2015 02:39:12 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=306908 Barbara Cough Shea, who lived for more than 35 years in West Seattle, will be remembered at a funeral Mass on Wednesday (April 15). Here’s the remembrance her family is sharing, telling the story of the many chapters of her life:

Barbara was born April 23, 1930, in Norridgewock, Maine, to Bernard Ezra “Bun” Cough and Helen Norton Cough. She grew up in Bar Harbor on Mount Desert Island, Maine, the second oldest and fast friend of her three siblings, Sonny, Janis and Jimmy. Her entrepreneurial and ever-scheming father had the family moving frequently around the town and pitching in on various family ventures. Her mother Helen was always there for her children.

Barbara graduated Bar Harbor High School and went on to attend college in Boston, where she reveled in the excitement and freedom of the city. Back in Bar Harbor during a break from school, she caught the attention of a college boy on vacation from studies in Miami. Barbara’s father was quite impressed to learn the “boy” was Bob Greive, a Washington state senator and law student. Barbara’s father arranged for her to transfer to school in Miami to encourage the romance. Bob and Barbara were married in Miami, just weeks before her 20th birthday. He was 29.

Following his law school graduation, Barbara and Bob settled in West Seattle, where they raised their six children. Barbara and the children were fixtures in the back pew of Holy Rosary Church during Sunday Mass while Bob ushered. She earned a reputation for her grace and elegance even as she wrangled squirming toddlers. She kept up appearances at daily Mass when slacks were taboo, hiding her pant legs by rolling them up above the hem of her long coat. She was a member of the Holy Rosary School Mothers Club for 18 years.

A tireless politician’s wife through her entire marriage, she played hostess, managed direct mail operations for many election campaigns, and moved the family every two years to Olympia for the legislative session.

Barbara loved being a mother. She was an intelligent, independent thinker who treated each child as an individual. Her children learned from her insatiable intellectual curiosity, generous spirit, moral strength and playful nature. And each inherited a version of Barbara’s distinctive guffaw.

Creative and industrious, Barbara developed and printed photos of her children in her own darkroom, sewed matching Easter dresses for her three girls, knit sweaters by machine for friends and family, and with her boys became an early and lifelong Apple computer loyalist. An accomplished quilter, she later combined her love of sewing and computers by embracing machine embroidery.

With her children grown, Barbara remarried, to Charles Law, a retired West Seattle attorney. They lived in Tacoma and enjoyed travel and many adventures in the short time they had together. Charlie died suddenly after just two years.

Barbara continued to attend St. Theresa’s Church in Tacoma where her friendship with David Shea blossomed. They married in 1994. They lived in Normandy Park briefly, then made their home in Des Moines. They traveled together in Europe, Canada and Mexico, across the U.S., and made the drive to Mesa, Arizona, every fall. In Mesa, they enjoyed a lively circle of friends. Barbara took and taught computer classes several times a week.

She continued with her love of travel and history, taking river trips from France to Turkey to Russia with her sister Janis and daughter Kathleen. An avid reader, Barbara was never without a book. She made microloans to women entrepreneurs in Africa, one of the many ways she lived her own brand of feminism. Barbara never completely lost her Maine accent and remained ever proud of her identity as a Cough.

She died April 9, 2015, unable to recover after major surgery. She will always be remembered for her ability to develop deep connections with new acquaintances and her many lifelong friends. Her generous spirit and love of fun live on in us all.

Barbara is survived by her husband of 21 years, David W. Shea. She was preceded in death by her husbands R.R. “Bob” Greive and Charles Law, and her siblings Bernard K. “Sonny” Cough, James Preston “Jimmy” Cough and Janis Cough Robbins. She also is survived by her daughter Bernadette Greive Lucas and her husband Leo Lucas of Hollywood, California; daughter Mary Greive Isar and her husband Andrew Isar, Gig Harbor; daughter Kathleen Greive Deakins and her husband Garald Deakins, Des Moines; son Raymond Peter Greive and his wife Nancy White Greive, Bellevue; son James Joseph “J.J.” Greive and his wife Suzanne Greive, Burien; son Thomas John Greive and his wife Diana Greive, Seattle; and grandchildren Gabriel Long, Kristin Long, Matthew Long, Brian John Deakins, Rae Anne Deakins, Paul Greive, Joseph Greive, and Marie Haley Greive.

A funeral Mass for Barbara will be celebrated Wednesday, April 15, 11 a.m., at St. Philomena Church in Des Moines. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Barbara’s memory may be made to Catholic Community Services and Catholic Relief Services.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Mass, reception next Thursday for Jack Meduna, 1946-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/mass-reception-next-thursday-for-jack-meduna-1946-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/mass-reception-next-thursday-for-jack-meduna-1946-2015/#comments Sat, 11 Apr 2015 00:17:13 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=306782 Jack Meduna will be remembered with a Mass at Holy Family and reception at Forest Lawn next Thursday. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

Jack Meduna, 68, of West Seattle, passed away April 2nd after fighting Lung Cancer for almost a year.

He was born in Seattle on December 18th, 1946. At a young age he attended Briscoe Boarding School for boys, then went on to graduate from O’Dea. He began pre-med at the UW but was drafted to Vietnam. Upon his return, he worked on a fishing boat in Alaska until finding his calling as a Seattle Police Officer. For 34 years, Jack absolutely loved his career with SPD and was also a Hostage Negotiator. He loved interacting with the public and all his fellow officers.

In 1986 Jack married for the second time and found the love of his life, Virgie.

They spent 23 years together, often traveling the Oregon Coast and eventually all over Europe before she passed 7 years ago. Jack is survived by his daughters Jill Casillas (husband Shane), Cami Aksdal (husband Todd) and son Clay Johnson (wife Amanda), and by his four grandchildren, Sydney Jaksich, Corbin Jaksich, Georgia Lee Aksdal, and Michael Aksdal and his sisters Vinette Tichi (husband Dennis), Roxanne Roten (partner Scott).

A mass will be held in his honor on Thursday, April 16th at 2 pm at Holy Family Church (9622 20th Ave. SW) followed by a graveside burial at Forest Lawn (6701 30th Ave. SW) with a reception to follow, also at Forest Lawn.

In honor of Jack and his love for pigs, please consider a donation to a place that meant a lot to him – Pigs Peace Sanctuary.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial this Saturday for Michael R. Shomaker, 1958-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-this-saturday-for-michael-r-shomaker-1958-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-this-saturday-for-michael-r-shomaker-1958-2015/#comments Thu, 02 Apr 2015 03:15:57 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305878 Services are planned this Saturday (April 4th) for Michael R. Shomaker. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

Michael Robert Shomaker
January 25, 1958 ~ March 28, 2015

Beloved husband of Michelle, son of Bob and Myrna Shomaker, father of Kyle, Cody, and Sophie Shomaker, brother of Beth Torgeson (Ron) and David Shomaker (Kathy), passed away after a valiant battle with myelofibrosis (blood cancer). Eagle Scout, Sea Scout, Control Systems Engineer, smart, funny, very caring, talented up the kazoo.

There was nothing he couldn’t fix or make better.

Services Saturday 4/4 at Forest Lawn Funeral Home, West Seattle. Viewing 12:00 pm, Chapel Service 1:00 pm, graveside following.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial for Don Smathers this Wednesday in The Junction http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-for-don-smathers-this-wednesday-in-the-junction/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-for-don-smathers-this-wednesday-in-the-junction/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 16:34:14 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305562 We promised to let you know when we heard about memorial plans for Don Smathers, whose death at age 65 was reported here one week ago. We now know the gathering will be at 5 pm this Wednesday (April 1st) at Junction Plaza Park.

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RIP, ‘familiar friend in The Junction,’ Don Smathers; memorial April 1st http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/rip-familiar-friend-in-the-junction-don-smathers/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/rip-familiar-friend-in-the-junction-don-smathers/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 00:31:28 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=304869

(WSB photo, July 2012)
Sad news about someone we’ll miss seeing around The Junction. Even if you didn’t know his name, you’ve probably seen Don Smathers, shown at center in our photo from 2012, when Southwest Precinct officers helped him with one of the tasks he’s handled over the years – putting up the flags for the 4th of July. We got word today from Susan Melrose at the West Seattle Junction Association that Don has died:

Don Smathers has been a familiar friend in The Junction for many years. This morning he passed away peacefully in his home in the Campbell Building, where he had lived for 25 years. We will have a memorial in Don’s honor, but for now, we can take a moment to remember this kind soul.

We’ll let you know when that is scheduled.

ADDED SUNDAY: 5 pm Wednesday, April 1st, in Junction Plaza Park (42nd/Alaska).

APRIL 1, 12:52 PM UPDATE: Because of weather uncertainty, this will be at Easy Street Records (California/Alaska) instead.

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Memorial service Friday for Jeffrey A. Hays, 1949-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-service-friday-for-jeffrey-a-hays-1949-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-service-friday-for-jeffrey-a-hays-1949-2015/#comments Sun, 22 Mar 2015 18:25:06 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=304673

Long-time West Seattle resident Jeff Hays will be remembered and celebrated at a service this Friday. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing today:

Beloved husband, friend, and partner of 45 years, Jeffrey Allen Hays passed away suddenly on March 20, 2015. You know the answer to the Great Secret now, My Love. Go in Peace, taking my heart with you.

Born October 20, 1949, in Albuquerque, Jeff is survived by his wife, Janet, a West Seattle native; his brother and sister-in-law, Jonathan and Jenny Hays of Henderson, Nevada; five nieces, two nephews, two grandnieces, two grandnephews, and friends too numerous to count – we all love and miss you, Jeff.

Memorial Service takes place on Friday, March 27, 2015, from 1-4 p.m. at Forest Lawn Cemetery and Funeral Home, 6701 30th Avenue SW. All are welcome who knew and appreciated this wry, suave, romantic gentleman. He could dance, too!

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial on Monday for Roger Osman Loken, 1920-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-on-monday-for-roger-osman-loken-1920-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-on-monday-for-roger-osman-loken-1920-2015/#comments Sat, 21 Mar 2015 18:34:18 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=304584 Memorial services are planned on Monday for Roger O. Loken, a U.S. Army veteran whose long and storied life also included careers in teaching and real estate. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

It is with deep sadness that we announce our dad, Roger Osman Loken, passed away on March 15, 2015 at the age of 94. He was born on November 26, 1920, in Seattle to Gilbert and Maud Loken. He grew up in Ballard, where he met his wife of 69 years at a dancing school. He graduated from Ballard High School in 1939 and shortly thereafter enlisted in the Army at the age of 18, serving as a First Lieutenant in WWII in the Army Signal Corps in North Africa and Italy.

In 1948 Roger graduated from the University of WA with a BS in Zoology and earned his degree in teaching. He was awarded a full scholarship to Oregon State University, earning a Masters Degree in Biology in 1962; he learned to write and speak German in order to research his thesis on tardigrades.

His teaching career began in 1949 at Kettle Falls High School, where he taught science and was Principal until 1954. For over 60 years, his beloved Kettle Falls students kept in touch with him through annual reunions and correspondence. After leaving Kettle Falls, he returned to his native Seattle, where he taught science at Denny Middle School from 1954-1957. He finished his teaching career at West Seattle High School from 1957-1967 where he taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

Early in his career he was active in the Lions Club, School Associations, and was a long-time member of Holy Rosary Church. Always interested in new pursuits, Roger got his real-estate license after retiring from teaching and enjoyed selling commercial real estate well into his 80s.

His childhood was spent in Ballard, one of 6 kids, where he discovered his life-long passion for photography, developing his photographs in his own darkroom. At age 19, he became a licensed ham radio operator and went on the air as W7HPQ and rarely missed an opportunity to go on the air well into his 90s. He was instrumental in relaying radio messages during the Great Alaska Earthquake of 1964.

Roger could build his own radios, loved to work on anything electrical, often repairing TVs for friends and family alike. He was intrigued by the computer age, building his own circuit boards and experimenting with color photography in his basement before it became commercial. He remained interested to his final days in any new technology that was happening. He built a house for his family in Kettle Falls, WA, and loved to work in his wood shop and hang out in his basement working on his projects whether it was building something or looking through his microscopes at new worlds.

He led an active, fun-filled life, taking trips to Europe and Hawaii with his wife, going on camping trips to the ocean with his family, surf fishing in the ocean waves, playing tennis and croquet, swimming, and beating everyone at gin rummy and poker.

Roger was the last surviving of his six siblings. He is survived by Marie, his wife of 69 years; his 6 children: David Loken of Everett, WA, Joan Perryman of New Mexico, Catherine Hunter of Des Moines, WA, Robert Loken of Seattle, Roberta Jackowski of Seattle, and Karen Coffey of Oregon, 10 grandchildren, 5 great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his grandson Mac Branom.

Funeral Services will be held at 9:30 am on March 23rd at Mount St. Vincent Chapel in West Seattle. Graveside service will be at Holyrood Catholic Cemetery at 2 pm. Arrangements entrusted to Emmick Family Funeral Services of West Seattle. Please share your memories of Roger on the online guestbook at www.emmickfunerals.com.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Services Thursday in memory of Dr. J. Robert Long, 1923-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/services-thursday-in-memory-of-dr-j-robert-long-1923-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/services-thursday-in-memory-of-dr-j-robert-long-1923-2015/#comments Mon, 09 Mar 2015 01:34:38 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=303259 Family and friends will gather in West Seattle on Thursday to remember Dr. J. Robert Long. Here is the remembrance his family is sharing:

Beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather Dr. J. Robert Long, born May 19, 1923, peacefully passed away in Seattle March 6, 2015.

He obtained his Doctorate of Education from the University of Washington. He was a life-long educator/administrator at West Seattle High School, Seattle University, University of Washington, and Shoreline Community College. He was dedicated to always being available to serve students.

He was a World War II Veteran, serving in the South Pacific. As a 1st Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps, he led the meteorology unit in Okinawa.

He is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Mercedes Long; his four children: Kathie Salonen (Bob), Bob Long, Sherrie Williams (John); and Kristie Farnworth (Steve). He is also survived by 8 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.

He will be deeply missed by all who knew him for his positive outlook. He always had a smile on his face and a joke on his lips. Above all else his primary dedication was to his family.

Services will be held at Forest Lawn Funeral Home on Thursday, March 12, 2015 at 2 pm, 6701 30th Ave. SW. Graveside services to follow. Reception to follow at Boulevard Park Place, 2825 S 125th St.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial, reception this Sunday for Bob Dowding, 1947-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-reception-this-sunday-for-bob-dowding-1947-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-reception-this-sunday-for-bob-dowding-1947-2015/#comments Fri, 06 Mar 2015 21:14:45 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=302989 A bittersweet week for the Seattle Lutheran High School community – cheering its basketball team in the state tournament, while mourning longtime athletic director and teacher Bob Dowding. The service and reception to celebrate his life are set for this Sunday afternoon. Here’s the remembrance his loved ones are sharing with the community:

Robert (Bob) Earl Dowding went to his Heavenly home on February 24, 2015, after valiantly battling cancer.

He was born in Lincoln, Nebraska, March 31, 1947, to Gerald and Eva (Rockenbach) Dowding. He attended country schools through 6th grade, after which he attended Palmyra, Nebraska, public schools. He graduated from Palmyra High School where he was active in football, basketball, track, chorus and class plays. Bob attended Sunday School and was confirmed at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Eagle, Nebraska. He attended Concordia Teachers’ College, Seward, Nebraska, where he majored in secondary education and played football.

After graduating from college, Bob taught 24 years in Southern California, 21 of those years at Orange Lutheran High School, Orange, California. He was one of the original five founding staff members. He served as Athletic Director/teacher and in the beginning set up and coached all-new sports programs. Bob then worked for 20 years at Seattle Lutheran High School as Athletic Director/teacher.

In both California [CIF] and Washington [WIAA] , he served on various boards and held different offices at the state, district, and league level. Bob was also selected as Athletic Director of the year at different levels numerous times.

Bob married Marie Ann Vernon July 3, 1970. They had two children, Kent and Mandy. Summers were spent on road trips to the midwest to visit grandparents and other relatives, finding a new route each time. The family spent many hours attending sports events of the children. Bob enjoyed sports, especially his Nebraska Corn Huskers. He would tell people Nebraska was God’s country. And who could forget his Nebraska fight song for his phone ringtone! He continued to remain the farm boy of his youth.

Although Bob was a coach and Athletic Director, he was an educator first and foremost. Bob was a man of Christian character who was looked up to and loved by many. His actions and examples will be a legacy to all the lives he has ever touched. He shared the love of Jesus and instilled in students Christian values.

After the love of his Savior was the love for his family. He was a loving, protective, fun-filled husband, father and grandfather. The role he was proudest of was that of being a grandfather to his three grandsons.

Bob was preceded in death by his mother, Eva, and father, Gerald: he is survived by his wife, Marie: son Kent (Alex), daughter Mandy (Ben): three grandsons; Isaiah, Nick and Thomas: Brothers Donald (Kathy), Ronald (Arlene), Dennis,: Sister Dianne (Jeff): two nephews, five nieces, thirteen grand nieces and nephews.

(Grandson Isaiah is a member of the SLHS team playing in the tournament in Spokane.) Sunday’s services are set for 3 pm at Hope Lutheran Church, 4456 42nd SW, with a reception to follow in the Seattle Lutheran gymnasium, 4100 SW Genesee. The family suggests donations to Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, “in memory of Robert Dowding,” and/or donations to The Bob Dowding Fund at SLHS.

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Remembering Frederick W. Burns, 1947-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/02/remembering-frederick-w-burns-1947-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/02/remembering-frederick-w-burns-1947-2015/#comments Thu, 19 Feb 2015 00:01:44 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=301428 A celebration of life for Frederick W. Burns is planned for March 1st. His family shares this remembrance:

Frederick Wycliffe Burns passed away suddenly February 8, 2015 at Swedish Hospital surrounded by family. Born February 27, 1947, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Fred was a lifelong Seattle resident and Husky fan. He graduated from the University of Washington School of International Business and worked in the municipal bond business for more than three decades.

Fred was passionate, charismatic, and had a huge heart. He was dearly loved by many, including Shari, the love of his life; his daughter and son-in-law Catherine and Olivier Humbert, grandchildren Camille and Theo, his parents Donald and Elaine Burns, and his predeceased brothers Billy and Don Burns.

In lieu of flowers, please contribute in his memory to West Seattle Helpline or West Seattle Food Bank.

A celebration of life will be held on Sunday March 1, 2015, 4-6 pm, at Salty’s on Alki.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial on February 19th for Jimmy D. Picinich Jr., 1971-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/02/memorial-on-february-19th-for-jimmy-d-picinich-jr-1971-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/02/memorial-on-february-19th-for-jimmy-d-picinich-jr-1971-2015/#comments Sat, 07 Feb 2015 15:21:00 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=300399 Services for Jimmy D. Picinich Jr., 43, are planned February 19th at Holy Rosary Church. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

Jimmy D. Picinich Jr., born April 30, 1971, passed away at home on January 30th.

Jimmy attended Holy Rosary, John F. Kennedy Catholic High School, and Shoreline Community College.

After completing his education, Jimmy began his career as a Seattle Longshoreman, a proud member of ILWU Local 19 for 25 years.

Jimmy leaves behind his wife Kelli, daughter Taylor, his loving parents Jim and Janet Picinich, sister Krista, brother-in-law Colin, nephew Jimmy, and niece Addison.

Services will be held at West Seattle Holy Rosary Church on Thursday, February 19th, at 10:30 am; reception to follow in Lanigan Gymnasium at Holy Rosary School.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Former ArtsWest artistic director Christopher Zinovitch dies at 43 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/former-artswest-artistic-director-christopher-zinovitch-dies-at-43/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/former-artswest-artistic-director-christopher-zinovitch-dies-at-43/#comments Thu, 29 Jan 2015 20:47:39 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=299568

(April 2013 WSB photo by Nick Adams)
A Facebook post by ArtsWest Playhouse and Gallery (WSB sponsor) confirms what we had just heard from a reader via e-mail: Former ArtsWest artistic director Christopher Zinovitch has died at just 43 years old. According to ArtsWest, “a short battle with cancer” took Mr. Zinovitch’s life. He left AW in summer 2013, after a year and a half as artistic director, following a decade in other roles with the organization, which remembers him today by saying that “during that time, we were blessed with an incredible body of work that he brought to our stage, his unrelenting passion for hard work and theater, and for the many lives he touched as he nurtured new artists.” Mr. Zinovitch had most recently been working as artistic director of Dakota Stage Ltd. in Bismarck, North Dakota. No memorial information yet but we’ll add it if/when we get it.

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