Dale Thomas Wilson was born in 1929 in Aberdeen, South Dakota and died peacefully of pancreatic cancer February 4, 2017 in Rathdrum, Idaho.
After his family moved to Chehalis, Washington then to Seattle, Dale was a baseball catcher and all-city football guard for Ballard High School despite his small stature, showing his characteristic dogged determination.
Dale and Constance Louise Wright married in Anacortes December 1951, a few months before he graduated from Western Washington College of Education.
Dale was then drafted into the US Army, serving in the infantry during the Korean War as well as at regimental headquarters. Dale returned to Bellingham to teach 6th grade for a year before being hired by the 2,000 student Northshore School District in Bothell, where his primary goal at first was to coach. A teacher at heart, he taught grades six through eight and counseled at both Bothell Junior High (Anderson) and Kenmore Elementary. Dale added a Masters degree and was Principal at Kenmore Elementary from 1960 to 1970.
These were active years with his three young children, filled with camping, travelling and trips to the ocean. The family moved to Michigan the next two years while he completed a doctorate degree on a Mott fellowship. Returning to Bothell in 1972, Dale began 5 years as Principal of Kenmore Junior High. When the School District built a third Junior High in 1977, Dale enjoyed planning and opening it as the first Principal of Northshore Junior High. He retired in 1982, feeling acutely the loss of his wife Connie to cancer the previous year as well as the loss of his hearing. Nevertheless, Dale continued to enjoy decades-long friendships, especially with fellow educators.
Eventually he split the years between Sun City, Arizona and Twin Lakes, Idaho (near his older brother Les), where he golfed, bowled, and played tennis regularly into his 86th year. Dale is remembered as a truly good human being with a playful sense of humor. He loved the outdoors and he loved people, especially the underdog.
He was predeceased by his wife, Connie (d. 1981) and his middle child, Mark (d.2009). He is survived by children Kathi, Boise, Idaho and Rob (Gretchen), Highwood, Montana; grandchildren Brad and Marina Goll and Peter (Molly) Wilson; and four great-grandchildren in Montana; as well as by his brothers Les and Laurence.
He touched the lives of many who will feel his loss acutely. A memorial gathering for friends is hoped to be offered this July at McMenamin’s Anderson School in Bothell.
At Dale’s suggestion, his ashes will then be scattered by family members in the Foss Lakes, where he loved to hike and fish as a teen, and where he later nurtured his own family’s love for the beauty of the creation.