Ross Atkinson (1950 - 2018)

Obituary
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    - Tim and Kathy O'Brien
  • "So sad to hear of the passing of Ross. What a wonderful..."
    - KIRAN LANFRANCHII
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    - Roz

Ross David Atkinson passed away July 1, 2018 after a brutal battle with skin cancer. Ross fought hard and was still walking to a nearby bluff above the Americas River to watch baby eagles learn to fly just 2 weeks before his death. Born to Donald and Edith Atkinson in Manhattan, Kansas in 1950, Ross was an Army brat and a Scout who learned early on to love the natural world in all its infinite variety. Growing up, Ross lived in Kansas, France, Mississippi, Texas, Germany and Georgia.He graduated from Hardaway High in Columbus in 1968. An avid reader and lifelong learner, Ross earned his bachelors degree in Geology at Auburn where he and his Alph Phi Omega brothers took care of the War Eagle mascot and hiked the Appalachian Trail. Later adventures included a stint as an Army Second Lieutenant, a masters in Hard Rock Geology at the South Dakota School of Mines, and a masters in Hydrology at the University of Nevada. Ross started his career as a modern day prospector hunting gold and other minerals for Homestake Mines and later Kerr McGhee. His profession required trekking the great outdoors looking for the right rock formations and Ross enjoyed the work. He found the first deposit of Borax to be discovered in over 60 years. Later, as a hydrologist, Ross worked for the State of California finding aquifers and monitoring the clean up of any that had been contaminated. Always kind and calm, Ross loved his friends and family, long hikes, good dogs, history, big trees, books, rain, and rocks and enjoyed fishing the seas off of Sitka, the Florida coast, and the rivers and streams of Canada. Ross will be missed by many and is survived by his brothers Steve and Don, their wives Cheri and Edie, sisters Patti and Debbie, their husbands Ted and Marion and nieces and nephews: Matt, Melinda, Travis, Melissa, Joe, Mercy, Maribel, Stephen, Melody, Chad, Lauren, Miles and Evie and his faithful dog, Kate.
Published in The Sacramento Bee from July 13 to July 14, 2018