Grace Irene Gilkey Dawson, former 30-year resident of Bellevue and 21-year resident of Woodinville, passed away peacefully on June 6, 2014, surrounded by family. She was born in Scio, Ore., at home on her family farm on November 26, 1917, to Leonard Ernest Gilkey and Edna Elizabeth Smith Gilkey. She dedicated most of her life to education, graduating Albany High School in 1936, and Oregon State College in Home Economics in 1940. She began her home economics teaching career in Dufur, Ore., before moving in 1950 to Sumner, Wash., to teach.
If you like excitement, consider Marie’s mother, Zieta, giving birth prematurely to a baby weighing 1 pound 12 ounces in the family’s farmhouse. The country doctor arrived in a snowstorm by horse and buggy to attend the birth. He advised nothing could be done to save such a small tot, tiredly saying he would return later in the morning. While Zieta was recovering her mother used a cigar box lined with a small blanket, then placed Marie on the open oven door of a wood burning stove for warmth during the remaining night.
When the doctor returned to find the baby alive, but immobile, he immediately indicated she should go to the nearest hospital about 20 miles away in Iowa City. The only available transportation was the caboose of the local train. Marie was covered and wrapped up in the box and carried by her father Louis Schnoebelen, accompanied by his mother and Maggie, a midwife. Marie, breathing but not moving, stayed several weeks in an “incubator” in the hospital with her mother often in attendance. A “wet nurse” provided milk which was fed to Marie in a type of an “eye dropper,” as her mother called it. After moving about a bit, she returned home to mother’s care.
She surprised everyone, developing into a healthy young woman, albeit small, a little under 5 feet, moving to the Northwest about 1942. She married Larry Bidlake, moving to Woodinville after his military service ended. They then lived on Lake Leota for 55 years as did Marie’s brother Orval Schnoebelen and his family, in fact nearly next door. After Larry passed in year 2000, Marie moved to the Olympic Peninsula in Sequim to be near her sister Joy. Four of her five brothers have passed, with one remaining, Jake in Vancouver, Washington. There are many nieces and nephews, some scattered across the U. S. and many in the Seattle suburbs. A large family with all in touch and connected! Marie and Larry thoroughly enjoyed their many years living on Lake Leota, considering it an idyllic place to live.
Oct. 9, 1928 — May 14, 2014 Phil was born in Elbow Lake, Minn. and was the son of Lawrence and Thelma Thompson and one of nine children. He is survived by sister Shirley Stann and brothers Dave Thompson and Larry Thompson. He was married to Mikell Thompson for 47 years and was the father of seven children. He was preceded in death by daughter Debbie. He is survived by Vickie, Stacy Carlson (Tim), Chris (Melaine), Kellee, Jaime, and Robbi Woods (Jeff). He was papa to 17 grandchildren: Sean, Alex and Rachel Gellatly; Erin Matteson and Scott Rockwell; Alix and Max Carlson; Savannah and Cody Thompson; Tyson and Taylor Thompson; Dylan and Hannah Undseth and Aidan Webber; and Ryenn, Reagan and Locker Woods. Phil was a retired naval veteran of the Korean War. He was a business owner of Northlake Concrete for 50 years. He spent many years playing weekly golf until his eyesight failed him. He loved to play poker with his brothers and friends. He loved fishing with the guys and took many fun trips to Lake Chelan. He and Mikell loved camping in their motorhome with all the children and grandkids. He and Mikell spent the past 25 years as snowbirds at their beloved Cancun, Mexico home. He loved Jesus, his family and had a special love for all his grandkids, who knew him as their Papa. He and Mikell lived at Crystal Lake Community for 47 years, where he served as an active member helping out whenever he could. Phil had a fabulous sense of humor and a servant’s heart and will be missed by all who knew and loved him. Remembrances can be made to Seattle Children’s Hospital or Evergreen Hospice.
E. Adeline Miller, 68-year resident of Woodinville, passed away at the home of her daughter Jenny Ingersoll on May 19, 2014. She was 98.
Born and raised in Seattle, Adeline spent her childhood studying dance, voice and drama. She was a graduate of Queen Anne High School. Adeline married George M. Fitz. They had four children. Adeline and her family moved to Woodinville in 1946.
Robert Eugene “Bob” Alfano, 74, of Woodinville, Wash., passed away at home on Tuesday, May 13, 2014.
He was the fifth of 10 children, born June 29, 1939 in Seattle, Wash., the son of the late Larry Louis and Hannah Bertha (Fontaine) Alfano.
He graduated from Seattle’s Franklin High School in 1957. He began a lifelong career in the grocery industry starting as a box boy at Albertson’s Foods in 1955. Bob worked through the ranks of the industry and went on to pursue his career with Jack Croco, the founder of QFC, as his mentor. He retired as vice president in charge of produce from QFC in May of 2000.
Bob married the love of his life, Linda L. Sariego, on August 27, 1960 in Seattle. He served in the Army National Guard as a reservist for six years in the 1960s, specializing in communications, and was honorably discharged as a sergeant. In 2005, Bob and Linda realized a lifelong dream by opening LaConner Fruit & Produce Market in LaConner, Wash., featuring fresh produce and a café within the market. They instituted “Spaghetti Night” on Wednesday evenings, donating a portion of the proceeds to the local Kiwanis club. Bob raised and showed Welsh ponies when his children were small. He also raised and raced standardbred harness horses.
He loved spending time with his family and was affectionately known as “Poppi” to his precious grandchildren. He was a big tease and had a great sense of humor. Bob is survived by his adoring wife, Linda, of 53 years; two loving children, Joyce Muszynski and husband David, and Tom Alfano and wife Rhonda; three grandchildren, Marisa and Leah Muszynski and Joe Alfano; a sister, Betty Flamiatos, and brothers, Jerry and Billy Alfano. He was preceded in death by two sisters, Gloria Spino and Carole Norby and four brothers, Donny, Sonny, Johnny and Jimmy Alfano.