John Michael Gronholt, 66, passed from this life on October 2, 2013, at his Anacortes home. He had been enjoying the loving company of his family and friends during his final week.
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John was born on February 10, 1947 in Los Angeles, California, to John and Irma (Wernli) Gronholt. With a passion for the ocean, John enjoyed surfing the beaches of southern California during his youth.
He served in the Air Force during the Vietnam War, and in the course of his enlistment he visited locales across the United States as well as Japan and Korea. Upon returning to civilian life, John received his Bachelors from Cal State Fullerton, which was followed by a Masters from San Diego State University.
In 1979 he married Mary (Day) and they settled in Modesto, California where John worked for many years as a human resources manager while he and Mary raised their two children. He retired in 2006, and he and Mary relocated to their new home in Anacortes.
A lifelong athlete and lover of the outdoors, John's pastimes involved boating, kayaking, and long distance bike rides, which included a ride from Seattle to Washington, DC in 1998. Ever the adventurer, John vacationed in places as diverse as Thailand and South Africa during his final year.
In Anacortes, he was a member of the Flounder Bay Yacht Club, Christ Episcopal Church, the Anacortes Civil Service Commission, and past member of the Kiwanis Club.
He is survived by his wife, Mary; brother, Tom; and children, Jenny and Sean.
A memorial service was held at Christ Episcopal Church in Anacortes on Saturday, October 5, 2013.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: the Anacortes Parks Foundation, Guemes Channel Trail Project, P.O. Box 1902, Anacortes, WA 98221 or to the Christ Episcopal Church, Building Fund, 1216 7th, Street, Anacortes, WA 98221.
Arrangements are in the care of Evans Funeral Chapel and Crematory, Inc., Anacortes, WA and the San Juan Islands.
To share memories of John, please sign the online guest register at www.evanschapel.com.
Published in Skagit Valley Herald Publishing Company on Oct. 6, 2013