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Boof McCrea was born in Spokane, Washington, on April 18, 1924. He grew up in Seattle and Chewelah, Washington.
Orphaned at age 9, he and his four siblings were embraced and raised by their aunt and uncle, Jim and Della Chalmers of Chewelah.
He graduated in 1943 from Jenkins High School, Chewelah. Shortly after that he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served during World War II.
After returning home, he married the love of his life, Jean Smith. His employment took them from Colville to Kalispell and then to Deer Lodge, Montana. It was in Deer Lodge that they raised their children, Randy and Cheryl, and made many lifelong friends.
In 1975, they pulled up roots and moved to Port Angeles, where Jean's brother lived. He was always quick to add that he happily left his snow shovel in Montana.
Boof loved the water and all its diverse activities. For a few years he owned a boat and enjoyed fishing. He knew which ships were in the harbor, their destination and cargo. He would track all of this on the Internet, and was considered the computer guru of the senior set.
Another aspect of the Peninsula that fascinated him was its history, and he was well-versed on the subject.
Boof was involved in his church, and was a leader of the infamous First Presbyterian "Chain Gang," a group of men who volunteer their time, talents and services to those in need.
But mostly he gave quietly to others, from his garden and kitchen to his talents as a perfectionist handyman, and, of course, his computer skills.
He treasured the fellowship of his coffee crew at the Fisherman's Wharf Cafe. As his friend said about him, "He was a man among men."
He cherished time with his grandchildren, Stephanie, Kelsie and Jordan. They can all tell tales of camping and beachcombing with Grandpa, and of course the walks on "Grandpa's Trail." They are now taking the next generation, Kaizer and Dylan, down the same trail.
On October 21, 2012, Boof was peacefully called home by his Lord. He will be greatly missed but never forgotten by those whose lives he touched.
There will be a celebration of Boof's life at 11 a.m. on Saturday, November 10, 2012, at First Presbyterian Church, 139 W. Eighth Street in Port Angeles.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made in his honor to the Port Angeles First Presbyterian Church or the Deer Lodge Rialto Community Theater.
Published in The Peninsula Daily News on Oct. 29, 2012