Eric John Ekblad, age 67, passed away June 7, 2013 at Mira Vista Nursing Facility in Mount Vernon, WA.
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He was born May 10, 1946 in New York to Stig and Doris (Ragger) Ekblad.
Eric joined the US Navy in 1966 and was stationed at NAS Whidbey Island in Oak Harbor as a Petty Officer AZ2 through 1969.
He worked for Puget Power as a meter reader in Skagit County for three years; a journeyman carpenter for thirteen years and studied at SVC Whidbey Island Branch in Graphic Arts.
Eric was first married to Joyce Ebel of Anacortes, WA from 1969 to 1979 and they lived in La Conner, WA. His second marriage was to Betty (Gilbert) Ekblad of Vancouver, BC on April 30, 1982 and they lived in Anacortes, WA until moving to Sedro-Woolley, WA.
Growing up on Long Island, New York during the 50's and 60's, Eric absorbed the jazz and blues influence and knew the lyrics of many rock and roll songs. During his youth he spent a lot of time at airports with his father who worked for SAS and they traveled to Europe occasionally. A childhood fascination with a pencil and paper which never left his side, and during the 80s, Eric illustrated local wildlife subjects; acrylics, inks and pencils were the medium.
Over the years Eric enjoyed target shooting, steelhead fishing, bird hunting, making great pots of homemade Italian spaghetti and spending time with his black labs, Otis and Jake. His recent passions included collecting slag lamps and antique postcards and pictures of his mystical location, Chuckanut Drive and Deception Pass.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Betty Ekblad of Sedro-Woolley; brother and sister-in-law, Bill and Kathy Burton; niece, Heather Burton; nephew, Jeffrey Burton all of Surrey, B.C.; aunt, Helen Ekblad and cousin, Linda Ekblad both of Florida; long-time friends, David Jensen of La Conner, Ben Benjamin of Oak Harbor, Tom Wait of Bow, and Gary Hopwood of Rochester, NY.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Stig and Doris Edblad; uncle, Alex Ekblad; and mother-in-law, Emily Gilbert.
Memorial contributions are suggested to the
A memorial service will be held at 1:00 pm on Saturday, June 29, 2013 at the First Evangelical Lutheran Church, 2015 E. Blackburn Road, Mount Vernon, with Pastor Suzanne Paulus officiating.
Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Lemley Chapel. Please share your memories of Eric and sign the online guestbook at www.lemleychapel.com.
1008 Third Street
Sedro Woolley, WA 98284
Published in Skagit Valley Herald Publishing Company on June 21, 2013