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Vernon Lowell Vandervort

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Vernon Lowell Vandervort Obituary
Vernon Lowell Vandervort

November 30, 1916 ~ July 28, 2013

Vernon was known and loved for his faith, humility, integrity, and caring heart. Born on a farm in Terril, IA to Oda and Walter Vandervort, he had three sisters; Ruth, Irma and Edith, and one brother; Gerald. He attended Olivet College in IL and Buena Vista College in IA before traveling to the West Coast at age 19. In San Francisco, he worked in construction and attended churches where he sang in choirs and quartets. In 1939, he married Crystal Prater. They had two sons, Dennis and Donald. A difficult divorce followed, and in 1953 Vernon traveled to Portland, OR where he met Frances Clark, his loving wife of 58 years. They moved to Seattle and their son David was born in 1958.

Vernon owned and managed the Crawford Garage Door Company, which introduced "roll-up" garage doors to thousands of Seattle homes. In 1968, he became a real estate broker, a career that he continued into his 90's. He was an active member at University Presbyterian Church for more than 50 years, serving as an elder and deacon, and was a member of the Skymasters group. He was also an active Kiwanian, serving as President of the North Central Kiwanis Club which for many years led a summer camp for children with disabilities at Camp Casey.

Vernon loved singing, playing the piano, gardening, sports, and travel. He wrote poems for family Christmas greetings for over 20 years. Through their church, Vernon and Frances became second parents to a Vietnamese family - Tai and Cam Chi Nguyen and their children Bob and Mimi.

Vernon is survived by sons Don (Bobbi) and David (Nancy) and their families, including five grandchildren-Gabriel, Christian, Emily, Colin, Catie-& one great grandchild, Nicholas.

A memorial service will be held at University Presbyterian Church, August 20 at 1 pm. Gifts in honor of Vernon can be made to UPC's Side by Side Ministry.
Published in The Seattle Times on Aug. 11, 2013
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