march 7, 1933 to march 13, 2018
Gordon Walgren, a lifelong Bremerton resident, died at home on March 13. He celebrated his 85th birthday the week before with friends and family. For more than half a century he remained a powerful political force in Kitsap County, providing advice and counsel to many policy makers and hosting fundraisers for candidates for public office after leaving the Washington State Senate as its Majority Leader in the early 1980's. Gordon's story is laid out in his 2013 book "Close to the Flame." A line from a Sinatra song, "Regrets, I've had a few, but then again, too few to mention" – spoke to Gordon. He also liked the saying, "Living well is the best revenge."
Gordon Lee Walgren was born on March 7, 1933, to Bremerton school teachers, Jess and Grace Walgren. He attended Bremerton public schools, graduating from Bremerton High School in 1951. His love of plants and animals were fostered by several summers working in the Mount Rainier, Olympic, and Yellowstone National Parks. Gordon earned his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Washington. He was also a Washington Huskies football supporter for more than fifty years and loved going to the games, not only at home, but traveled to games as well. After serving as Law Clerk to Justice Matt Hill at the Washington State Supreme Court, he returned to Kitsap County where he was elected County Prosecutor at age 25. After serving one term he established his private practice law firm which grew to become one of the largest in Kitsap County and where he has served as "Of Counsel" to what is now Ryan, Montgomery & Armstrong in Silverdale. His law firm served as the basis for many municipal, district and superior court judges over the past 45 years.
Among his many activities, Gordon attained the highest 32nd degree as a Scottish Rite Mason and was awarded an honorary 33rd degree for exceptional service. He enjoyed traveling to all parts of the world, fine wines and cigars, good Scotch, cooking, and caring for the plants and animals at his home. On a personal note, his great niece and nephews loved having him swim with them at the summer home on the canal every summer.
Gordon's wife of 54 years, Sue, predeceased him two years ago. He is survived by his daughters, Kathy (husband Jeff) and Tracey (husband Jerry), grandchildren Katrin, Erik, Chris and Meredith and his brother Bill (wife Sandy) and their sons JC and Tom.
Gordon loved animals and all outdoors, in lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made in his honor to the Kitsap Humane Society, www.kitsap-humane.org
or Great Peninsula Conservancy at 423 Pacific Ave #401 Bremerton WA 98337.
There will be a celebration of life on April 8 from 1 to 4 at the Kitsap Golf and Country Club. An online memorial can be seen at www.lewischapel.com