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Phyllis Harmon posted a condolence
Tuesday, March 14, 2023
Dear Van -- I remember that summer in 1967 when our neighbor introduced me to you, the good-looking man who lived in the apartment below me. I was 18 and renting my very first apartment as an emancipated adult. Do you remember taking over my life? When you first came to my home, you told me to make my bed every day and lent me an alarm clock so I would never be late for work. I remember the baseball game you took me to--the first I had ever attended. Do you remember the trip to the small airfield to watch sky-diver parachutes being packed--a sport you enjoyed and the one you gave up for me? You told me to stand clear of the Cessna propeller as it might spin into action and you didn't want to see me splattered across the field. Then there were our trips to the coast to walk the beaches and learn about each other. We had only known each other for three months when you asked me to marry you. I did so with an open heart and a willingness to share your life. That was where our journeys together began. Our years of adventures, traveling, first with General Telephone up and down the west coast while you worked as a COE installer, and then living in Alaska, Canada, Texas, California, and Oregon made life interesting and fun-filled. Those early years resounded with your voice in song as you moved about our days. You had a beautiful baritone voice. Your wit and humor kept me laughing and on my toes. I remember Coos Bay and buying that 1968 Volkswagen Square Back right out of the show window. That car took us up the Alcan and most of the way back out. Do you remember the trailer we rented in the backyard of the union rep’s house in Anchorage? Remember Lake Louise and the 20-lb Turbot we caught ice fishing? Do you remember cutting up that side of Cariboo in the trailer’s bathroom? Remember that 200-lb flounder, freshly caught and quartered right there in front of us in Hoonah? How about all the salmon caught in the streams by the local Tlingits and given to us? Do you remember being adopted into the Whale Clan? We had a few settled years raising Kelley, owning that house in Aloha (both of us working to pay for it), and grad school. Those were intense years. I will never forget the house remodel and the tile man who couldn’t lay tiles in a straight line unless he was half drunk. Do you remember selling the house and all that entailed? You and your buddies raising the house using car jacks to put bricks under the pilings to get them out of the dirt so the house would pass inspection? Then there were our years as snowbirds, first living in a tent and then the camper. We learned a lot about living on the road, solar panels, and the Arizona desert. Moving back to Oregon put an end to our long adventures as we settled into our sedentary years. Working for Providence -- me as a full-time employee and you as a volunteer added another layer to our time together. We had 55 years of learning, loving, and bumping into each other as we journeyed together through this thing called life. It ends here today. From this moment forward, I continue on without you at my side. Your guidance, the lessons learned, and the memories we built together will stay with me for the rest of my days. So long my friend. Rest in peace. Your loving wife
Leanna Lindquist posted a condolence
Friday, February 10, 2023
Van and I were email pals. Every morning he emailed me a selection of memes, mostly political in nature. I looked forward to reading them when I turned my computer on in the morning. He loved his country, respected those who fought for it, and had no tolerance for those who disrespected it. RIP Van and thank you for your service. You are missed.
Kaitlyn Maryanski posted a condolence
Friday, February 10, 2023
I unfortunately never gained the opportunity to meet my grandfather, but I pray he and his daughter, my mother, had the most special and beautiful of reunions. Sending all of my love and hugs to you, Phyllis. Xo
The family of Van Allen Harmon uploaded a photo
Friday, February 3, 2023