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Chuck Hanke

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Chuck HANKE Charles Josef Hanke passed away on March 6, 2011. Born a Tlingit/German/Irishman in Bellingham, WA on November 19, 1939 to Fred and Sophie Hanke, Chuck developed a love of nature and cars at a young age. As a pre-teen, he trekked off alone along the coastline below Chuckanut Drive to spend his weekends camping and fishing. At 12, Chuck owned his first car; the first of well over 1000 that he owned in his lifetime. His destiny as a Longshoreman was determined early when, at age 9, he gave himself a tattoo: an anchor on his forearm which was enormous on his child-sized body but tiny on his 6'6' adult frame. Chuck lived a unique life, especially as a parent. In 1969, he married Valerie Curran and lovingly acquired her 3 children Erin, Tasha and Gregg. Together they had Garth. After his 1st marriage ended in divorce, Chuck married ReeAnne Halonen in 1985 and from her gained yet 3 more children: Vince, Mance and Angela. Together, they created a welcoming, fun home (warmly known as 73rd & Chaos) which was a safehaven for many, full of good music (especially Blues), good food and humor. Chuck regaled us with hilarious stories of his adventurous life, especially working on the waterfront; bringing all who were interested down to the piers to enjoy the view as he tied up freighters. Chuck approached life with a creative eye and the motto 'Normal? Any jerk can be normal!' He generously shared his love and exceptional sense of humor, once joking at work 'I left a legacy that will last a lunchtime.' Predeceased by his parents, wife ReeAnne, brother Fred Hanke, and granddaughters Vanessa Downing and Samantha Sterkel-Webb. Survived by his 7 kids and their children, his sisters Millie, Karla and Rose and a brother Jack, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. A celebratory memorial will be held on April 10 at 1:00pm at Daybreak Star: 3801 West Government Way, Seattle 98199. Special thanks to the ILWU Local 19 and to the excellent staff at Foss Home.
Published in The Seattle Times from Apr. 2 to Apr. 3, 2011
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