Sailor, traveler, fisherman, friend, entrepreneur, and most of all, loving|
husband. Born in Seattle and raised on the water, as a great-grandson of Thea
Foss should be, Gary's first real job at 16 was on a tugboat. He worked on
Foss tugs from Texas to Panama to Alaska and many of the ports in between.
After dropping out of the UW for a short stint in the Coast Guard, he drove
a Land Rover full of college students from England across Europe, Turkey,
Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. Then back to the UW for a BA,
followed by Dartmouth's Amos Tuck School of Business for an MBA.
Gary started his first business in 1976, a concrete pumping company. In 1978
he met the love of his life, Kerri. That was also the year he was in a crew of
8 friends who set the Victoria to Maui sailboat race record on "Merlin", which
stood for 20 plus years. Gary and Kerri soon after sold the pumping company
and took off for a three year honeymoon sailing their 38 foot boat, "Always
Ready", from France to Denmark, across the French canals with a winter stop
in Paris, and everywhere in the Mediterranean. Later he and his employees
built up Pacific Torque, a diesel engine, torque converter and transmission
rebuilder, into one of the largest in its industry. It was sold and he retired in
2007. Gary was most proud of hiring kids just out of high school and watching
them become skilled technicians, with solid middle-class jobs.
Retirement was worldwide traveling, sailing and fishing with friends. He loved
time with his family, nieces and nephews and friends – nothing else was
as important. Gary is survived by his wife Kerri, brother Phil Wood and
family (wife Judy Mahoney, Dominic, Anna Justine, Lucy); in-laws Jim
and Rosa Kimmerly (Matthew); in-laws Darrell and Brita Kimmerly (Amry,
Gabriella) and mother-in-law Phyllis Lyman.
In lieu of flowers, please consider saving a life through a donation of blood
at your local blood bank or by making a donation in honor of Gary to the Puget
Sound Blood Center, 921 Terry, Seattle, WA 98104-1256 or online at
A celebration of Gary's life will be held
on October 22, 2012,
4:00 pm at the Seattle Yacht Club,
1807 East Hamlin Street, Seattle.
Published in The Seattle Times from Sept. 29 to Oct. 28, 2012