Gary Paul Hartnett, 58, passed away peacefully July 30, 2013 at his home in Mount Vernon, Washington.

Gary was born November 5, 1954 in Marshfield, Wisconsin. He was the son of Glen and Marion Hartnett.

He graduated in 1972 from Columbus High School in Marshfield, Wisconsin, graduated in 1976 from Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and worked on his graduate degree in horticulture at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. While in college, he was affliated with the Delta Rho Upsilon Fraternity.

He married Kathleen Nicolaus on August 20, 1977 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. In 1979, they moved to the Skagit Valley. Gary had been employed as an operations manager at Skagit Gardens for over 32 years when he retired in 2011. During his career, Gary was a member of the Flower Growers of Puget Sound, the Washington Floriculture Association, a member of the 15th class of the Washington Agriculture and Forestry Education Foundation, and most recently, a member of the Master Gardener class of 2013. Gary was a member of Salem Lutheran Church in Mount Vernon, Washington.

Gary was an avid outdoorsman. He enjoyed hiking, camping, boating, canoeing, fishing, and crabbing. He was involved and dedicated to Boy Scouts, helping to establish Troop 100 and serving as Scoutmaster for many years. He also enjoyed watching his kids in all of their sporting events throughout their high school and college careers. Most recently, he enjoyed the role of being a Grandpa.

He was preceded in death by his father Glen Hartnett, brother Kevin Hartnett, brother-in-law Chuck Lemberg, and mother-in-law Ruth and father-in-law William Nicolaus.

Gary is survived by his wife of 36 years, Kathy; his son Joe (Sarah) Hartnett of Seattle; his daughter Erin (Jose) Matthews of Sparks, NV; his mother Marion Hartnett of Marshfield, WI; his brother Randy (Sherry Thistle) Hartnett of Champlin, MN; his sisters Cindy Lemberg of Cromwell, IN; Tammy (Steve) Cuthbertson of St. Paul, MN; and Laura (Dean) Weiner of Milwaukee, WI. He is survived by brothers-in-law David (Andrea) Nicolaus of Park Falls, WI; and Don (Amy) Nicolaus of Jackson, MI. He is also survived by his grandchildren Noah and Madelyn Matthews, along with numerous nieces and nephews.

The Hartnett Family would like to send a special thank you to the following: Dr. Jafari and the staff at the Skagit Valley Hospital Regional Cancer Care Center, Dr. Parvathaneni and the staff at the University of Washington Medical Center, and Dr. Nghiem and Dr. Bhatia as well as the staff at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. We are grateful and thankful for the wonderful care that was always given. You not only helped Gary, but you all helped us as well.

Those wishing to remember Gary through memorial can do so by contributing to Salem Lutheran Church Memorial Fund, 2529 North Laventure Rd., Mount Vernon, WA, 98273 or Skagit Valley Regional Cancer Care Center Memorial Fund, 307 S. 13th St., Mount Vernon, WA 98273.

A Celebration of Gary's life will be held Sunday, August 4, 2013, 1:30 pm at Salem Lutheran Church in Mount Vernon, Washington.

Please share your thoughts of Gary and sign the online guest register at

Arrangements are under the care of Hawthorne Funeral Home, Mount Vernon.

Funeral Home

Hawthorne Funeral Home and Memorial Park
1825 E. College Way  Mount Vernon, WA 98273