Update: 35th/Dawson accident turns fatal; victim made history

According to two sources, including a comment on the original accident coverage, the man hit by a car last night after chasing his dog onto 35th near Dawson has died. The King County Medical Examiner identifies him as 39-year-old Gregory Hampel, who lived near the accident scene. The commenter on last night’s report, identified only as “a friend,” says:

He was a great man, a great father and a good friend. He will be missed by all.

As a father, in fact, it has been pointed out to us, Mr. Hampel helped make legal history; he and his partner won a case involving adoption rights for same-sex couples. Here’s one of many online references we have found so far; a newer article says a federal appeals court upheld the ruling almost exactly a year ago. Meantime, he is the third person hit and killed by a car in West Seattle in the past year (we mentioned the other 2 in Sunday night’s coverage). ADDED 12:55 AM: This short Times article says Mr. Hampel worked as a teacher at Tacoma’s Seabury School, which sent e-mail about the crash to the school community, calling him “a bright light in our community.”

49 Replies to "Update: 35th/Dawson accident turns fatal; victim made history"

  • Shell Marr August 11, 2008 (10:21 pm)

    That is so sad… our thoughts & prayers go out to Gregory’s family and friends.

  • miws August 11, 2008 (10:33 pm)

    Condolences to family and friends….



  • C.A. August 11, 2008 (10:41 pm)

    How very sad, indeed. My sincere condolences to the family and friends he left behind.

  • JT August 11, 2008 (10:54 pm)

    So very sorry to hear this. Friends and family are definitely in our thoughts.

  • flowerpetal August 11, 2008 (11:22 pm)

    I’m stunned. Greg and his partner are exceptional men and parents. My heart is breaking for his partner, daughter and family. A huge loss.

  • Roger August 11, 2008 (11:33 pm)

    I am very saddened to learn of his passing. My condolences go out to Gary’s partner, family and friends.

  • mellaw6565 August 11, 2008 (11:48 pm)

    How very sad! Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.

  • rockergrrrl August 12, 2008 (12:50 am)

    How awful for the driver as well !! Sad story all the way around…

  • homedk August 12, 2008 (12:52 am)

    We are so sorry to hear this & send our condolences to his family & friends.

  • Art & Esther Garcia Cuellar August 12, 2008 (6:01 am)

    It breaks our hearts…
    Our love to the family.
    Sorry for the driver.

    If someone could please contact Ed for us, his dog is being watched next door and is being well taken for.

    Love, Art & Esther

  • Robby August 12, 2008 (6:33 am)

    He was a good man with a heart as big as the world. he was a good father and a loving partner, he will sorely be missed. My love goes to you Ed and V,


  • Pia Goettfert August 12, 2008 (6:47 am)

    My heart is lost without him here!!
    Love, your cousin Pia

  • Aim August 12, 2008 (8:29 am)

    This is such sad news. Our love to the family and friends left behind.

    Aim and soclwrkrinmotn.

  • Zenguy August 12, 2008 (8:34 am)

    Hard to believe someone who worked so hard to have a family has now been taken away from them. My heart goes out to everyone involved.

  • Todd, Teresa, Kesley & Kent August 12, 2008 (8:53 am)

    Dear Ed & Vivien,
    Our hearts go out to the both of you. Our words fall short but our thoughts and prayers are lifted for you.
    Todd, Teresa, Kelsey & Kent

  • yeah August 12, 2008 (10:31 am)

    The best parent ever. A marvelous teacher. A fantastic friend.
    A great cook. Mother Teresa meets Martha Stuart with the looks of a movie star.
    So many people will miss Gregory.

    The Gutierrez-Rose Family

  • Krista August 12, 2008 (11:09 am)

    Our thhoughts and all of our prayers are with you Ed & Vivian.
    We can’t even imagine the pain you must feel. He was a great life and will be greatly missed.

    love Krista & Renee

  • Thomas, Janette, Denise and Rica August 12, 2008 (12:04 pm)

    It’s so hard to believe what happened. We’re very sad. And would like to say, thank you for the time, we had together in Germany.
    Our thoughts goes to Ed, Vivian and his family.
    With love
    Thomas, Janette, Denise and Rica

  • Denise&Family August 12, 2008 (12:21 pm)

    We can’t believe it!! We miss you sooo much!!!
    Love Denise & Family

  • flowerpetal August 12, 2008 (12:37 pm)

    To Art and Esther’s comment above re: the family dog. I understand that Ed now knows that the dog is being well cared for. Thanks so much.

  • Bonnie August 12, 2008 (1:04 pm)

    So sad…I’m so sorry for the family’s loss….

  • Tonya August 12, 2008 (2:19 pm)

    What a horrible thing, my prayers go out as well to all his family and friends.
    I can tell from reading these comments that Gregory was a very special person and a very loved person.

  • linda c August 12, 2008 (2:30 pm)

    What a sweet spirit has left this world. I strain to believe it.
    I worked with Gregory years ago. He was special to all the kids he came in contact with. They so appreciated him, as did I. Thank goodness he got to touch a lot of lives during his — the world is better for it.
    Let us all be reminded to LOVE our lives.

  • Bo Seeger August 12, 2008 (3:47 pm)

    You are both in my thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

  • AJ August 12, 2008 (7:43 pm)

    :( Very sad. Rest in peace.

  • yonat and maya August 12, 2008 (7:54 pm)

    we are so sad by this tragic news. we send our love to all those who loved him so deeply…we only wish we could have known him better.

  • Neighbors on 36th August 12, 2008 (8:42 pm)

    We are so very sorry for your loss, just devastated that your partner is gone from you. Our deepest sympathies go out to you.

  • sassy August 12, 2008 (8:56 pm)

    I’m deeply sorry for your loss. He obviously had a big heart, and love for all.

  • joe, peter and AJ August 12, 2008 (9:07 pm)

    oh Ed,
    We sit here shaking our heads, trying to understand, crying and remembering sweet Gregory. Our love to you and Viv.

  • Gökhan August 13, 2008 (2:40 am)

    This feels like a bad dream we can’t wake up from….we will miss you, my condolence to Ed and Vivian

  • Pia August 13, 2008 (4:54 am)

    i can´t believe and understand it all!! In my heart is a large hole! my thoughts are only with you Ed and Vivian! ´Greg i miss you soooo much and i love you!! Rest in Peace! Pia!!

  • a friend August 13, 2008 (5:41 am)

    The world has lost a light that touched many. May he always be remembered and those who knew this man remember his many kindnesses and honor his life by continuing to spread this kindness to those around us.

  • WSB August 13, 2008 (10:44 am)

    Thank you all for posting tributes. If anyone has information on a memorial – either an event, or even any organization to which memorial donations might be sent – please let us know:
    We would like to post a followup as it is clear Mr. Hampel touched many lives. We are watching the usual obituary listing sources in hopes of seeing this information when it’s available, but also thought we would mention that here. Thank you.
    -Tracy (WSB editor)

  • Jeremy Huley August 13, 2008 (9:27 pm)

    I’m stunned. Our Best..
    Jeremy and Katrina

  • Frann and John August 14, 2008 (8:36 am)

    Ed and Vivian ~ we are truly saddened and feel your loss. Gregory will always be a part of Magnolia Beach and Indian Point on Vashon. Gregory always had hug and a bright smile, which he shared whenever we ran into your close-knit family. Please accept our condolences.

  • Reaching Out August 14, 2008 (8:41 am)

    I am close with the driver involved in Gregory’s tragic accident. She too is extremely devastated by this. She would like to reach out to help Gregory’s family, friends and loved ones in any way possible. Please post if there is something she can do. My thoughts go out to his loved ones and to her too at this horrible time.

  • Eric August 14, 2008 (9:10 am)

    Gregory’s Memorial Service:
    Thursday August 14
    University Lutheran Church
    1604 NE 50th

    viewing 10-noon
    service following

  • WSB August 14, 2008 (10:08 am)

    “Reaching Out” – we posted information on two memorial funds earlier this morning:

  • east coast August 14, 2008 (6:29 pm)

    May God rest Gregory and protect you, Ed and Vivian. We’ve seen the two of you as a loving and devoted couple and family. Prayers are with you …..

  • nancy martin August 14, 2008 (6:47 pm)

    Finding out the news too late to attend a memorial service–stunned and broken hearted for ed, who wore the love he had with gregory like a warm snug robe—my love to you, ed and your sweet girl vivian

  • Susan August 15, 2008 (10:34 am)

    I sit here and I can’t think of words that truly express what I feel. It is too hard to accept. My time with Gregory was always so wonderful and uplifting. He was an exceptional man. The Gutierrez-Rose Family summed it up perfectly. My heart goes out to Vivian and Ed and the driver. Ed, Viv…I love you and am here for you.

  • Stew August 15, 2008 (1:01 pm)

    My heart goes out to Ed and Vivian. Sending lots of love.

  • Linda (Cullinane) Phillips August 15, 2008 (11:57 pm)

    Ed and Vivian,
    We are saddened by your tragic loss. Gregory was a wonderful person. You taught us all so much about love and family by your example. Magnolia Beach was blessed by your friendship.Prayers of peace for you all.
    Linda, Lynnae, Jen, and D.J.

  • Harvey Pillersdorf August 16, 2008 (7:47 am)

    Dear Good Ed and Vivian, Through Peter, Joe and Aliza I have come to know more and more of your joyful, fine and valiant family over the years. I feel the shock of Gregory’s having been torn away from you and all of us. May your grieving flow and your healing be well supported. Love, Harvey in Ann Arbor

  • a friend August 16, 2008 (2:37 pm)

    I had only known Gregory a year but I am just beginning to understand the impact he has had on my life. His ability to touch the lives of children was magical. His humor, empathy, support and professionalism in his teaching were, to use his favorite adjective, Fabulous. I’m not sure how just yet, but we’ll carry on without him and honor his memory in the best way we can.
    My sincere condolences to Ed, Vivian, Gregory’s family and friends and the driver. You are all in my thoughts.

  • Brooke August 18, 2008 (10:27 pm)

    Ed, I am so very sorry to hear of your tragic loss. Much love to you and Viv. You are very much in my thoughts.

  • Lisa, Larry and Rachel August 20, 2008 (8:34 pm)

    Dear Ed and Vivian,

    Gregory was special, a good Daddy and my friend.
    Mommy talks … Chit Chat and talking about parenting, teaching, children and other silly
    things. Our shared passion was teaching and
    children and the topic of most our whimsical conversations. I will miss him forever. I was going to connect with the three of you before I headed back to Phoenix and have the girls see each other, but since I am moving back to Vashon .. .put it off. I should have listened to that gentle nudging, but life got in the way and I put it off.

    Oh gosh Ed, words cannot express our deep sympathy. Please know we share your loss.
    Know that we love you and will be holding
    you and Vivian up in our prayers. Rachel sends
    Vivian kisses and hugs. Rachel says to tell Vivian that her daddy is an angel in heaven looking over her. You are strong Ed (papa bear) and you have so much love to carry you and Vivian. They say the good die young. Keep your faith and know Gregory is in the wings watching
    over you guys.

    Love Lisa, Larry, Rachel and Lauren…

  • Lisa Miller September 8, 2008 (2:14 pm)

    What a terrible tragedy and unfathomable experience. Ed, my heart reaches out in empathy to you and your beautiful Vivian. I wish I had had the chance to know him too…I have no doubt that he was just as wonderful a man as you. It has been my gift to have had the opportunity to get to know you a bit, and I wish you comfort, peace and the continuance of support from the amazing people you have in your life. Gregory is in good hands – please be assured of that. One day at a time, my friend – and often times minute by minute. Take good care. ~ Lisa

  • Dano Beal September 23, 2008 (12:32 am)

    To Gregory’s much loved family- You don’t know me, but Gregory and I became friends a few years ago, as he began his journey into teaching. He was scheduled to do his student teaching with me at Lafayette in West Seattle…. We had a great deal in common, and Gregory’s professor connected us, trusting it would be a good match. B oth of us were looking forward to his student teaching experience… As it turned out, he had to this elsewhere, but we stayed in friendly contact… running into one another on the Vashon ferry, or about town from time to time. He always spoke of the joy that his partner and daughter….. his family…. brought him. He shared stories and pictures. A lovely, gentle man with a big laugh and a smile that never failed to fold you into the wonderful day he always seemed to be having.
    I am so sorry for your loss…. I consider our brief friendship to have been special, bright, and growing…. I am so saddened by this news, and so sorry to hear of this tragedy so late….. Please know that I am thankful for all his family did to make him so very happy….. he shared this so willingly with those who were lucky enough to cross his path on any given day.
    Peace and Courage,

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