Walter Dawson (1928 - 2014)

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Walter Dawson died peacefully in Juneau Alaska on December 11th, 2014. Walter was born in Seattle, Washington on January 7th, 1928 to Cora and Floyd Dawson. Walter was the seventh of fourteen siblings growing up in the family home in Puyallup Washington. In the middle 1940's Walter followed in his brother's footsteps and joined the U.S. Army. Walter spent a nine-year career in the Army serving his country in Japan and Korea. After an honorable discharge, Walter worked at the Boing plant in Seattle. Walter met Ruth Elaine Duval and fell in love. Walter and Ruth were married on June 7, 1958 in Petersburg, Alaska and they spent 56-happy years together as man and wife.
While Walter and Ruth made their first home in Kirkland, Washington, they quickly moved to Petersburg, Alaska where Ruth's parents Royal and Clara Duval lived. Ruth worked at Petersburg Public Schools as a teacher and Walter worked as longshoreman at Petersburg Fisheries for the next 30-years. Walter was the shop steward for ILWU for many years and was well respected and liked by his many peers.
Walter and Ruth bought a home in Petersburg next to the Wrangell Narrows and started a family adopting four children, Diane, Cora Rose, Daniel and Darrell. During Walter's life he was a member of the Lutheran Church, Assembly of God Church, Petersburg Chamber of Commerce, Veterans of Foreign Wars and many service organizations. After retirement Walter found fulfillment helping Ruth in her preschool. Walter became a grandparent to many of those children. Walter touched many lives in Petersburg leaving behind many friends and family who will miss him dearly.
After selling his home in Petersburg, Walter and Ruth moved to Juneau and eventually became residence at the Juneau Pioneers' Home where Walter enjoyed flirting with the nurses and caretakers. Walter also enjoyed watching football, stealing bananas and winning at bingo and board games. Walter was known for his daring daytime escapes via his electric wheel chair to Twin Lakes. Walter was loved by many in Juneau, he will be missed by many of his friends at the Pioneers' Home and his family.
Walter spent his life working hard but always with a smile on his face. Walter was always ready to give a kind word or hold a door open; he was a true gentleman in every sense of the word. Whatever free time Walter had he gave freely to others; he will always be remembered as a kind and gentle man.
Walter was proceeded in death by his daughter Cora Rose Dawson, his parents Cora and Floyd I. Dawson and many of his siblings. Walter leaves behind his loving wife Ruth Dawson, son Daniel Dawson and Daniel's wife Jo Dawson, son Darrell Dawson, and daughter Diane Bell and her husband Harlan Bell, and grandchildren, Elaine Dawson, Hannah Dawson, Justin Patrick, Brook Dawson, Ryan Dawson, Devon Bliss and Darian Bliss and Great Grand Daughter Aisha Kayle Bliss.
Services will be held for Walter at the Juneau Church of God at 8497 Thunder Mountain Road in Juneau on Tuesday December 23rd at 2:00 pm.
Published in The Juneau Empire on Dec. 22, 2014
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