John Ralph Brink Sr. passed away on August 15th, 2013 after a long, hard battle with lung and heart disease.
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John was born to John and Sadie (Nymeyer) Brink on Dec. 18th, 1934 in the Lyman area. He grew up working on the family farm. His father became very ill so John left school at age 13 and took a job as a milk truck driver to help support his family. In 1954 he joined the Army and served as a Colonel's chauffeur in Germany.
John had strong work ethic and tried his hand at a few different jobs. Aside from farming and driving the milk truck, he also worked in the woods and in fiberglass boat building. In the late 50's he discovered he had a true talent for construction, enjoying particular success as a drywall hanger until he was injured on a job site in Alaska in 1972. He then moved on to sales and construction management again enjoying great success until his retirement in 1994.
On August 15th, 1957 he and his bride, Twyla Seely were married. They had five children: Deniece, Lori, Rhonda, Penny and John Jr. (J.R.).
John loved the outdoors. He loved camping and fishing and hunting pheasant in Eastern Washington. He also enjoyed picking the morel mushrooms that grew in the woods behind his property. On camping trips he was famous for his French toast cooked over the campfire.
John was a strong supporter of education and the schools in the Burlington-Edison school district. Because of his construction knowledge, he was asked to serve on the Citizens Advisory Committee advising the district on facility upgrades, repairs and the construction of new schools. He served for several years and was a familiar face and voice to the district officials and members of the school board. He and Twyla also started the Brink Family Scholarship to benefit students entering trade or technical school.
John was preceded in death by his father John, his mother Sadie, and his brothers Jack and Arend.
John is survived by his wife of 56 years, Twyla, and their five children, Deniece & Ben Ballenger of Burlington, Lori Burd of Burlington, Rhonda & Harlan Brown of Burlington, Penny & Dennis Roodzant of Mount Vernon, and J.R. & Christie Brink of Burlington. He is also survived by his sister Darlene Wilson of Mount Vernon and his grandchildren Michelle, David, Rebecca, Anthony, Mary, Emily, Erik, Sadie and Chloe.
John will be remembered by his family as a loving husband, father and brother. He will be remembered by everyone as loyal, caring and honest and as a man who always tried to give better than he received.
Memorials can be made to the Burlington Edison Education Alumni Foundation in honor of The John and Twyla Brink Family Scholarship fund. Checks to be payable to: B-EEAF, P.O. Box 350, Burlington, WA. 98233.
A Celebration of Life will be held for John at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, August 24th, at the Burlington Lutheran Church, 134 E. Victoria Ave., Burlington.
Published in Skagit Valley Herald Publishing Company on Aug. 21, 2013