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Henrik M. Sortun

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Henrik M. Sortun Obituary
Henrik M. Sortun

Henrik ("Rik") Martin Sortun, 73, passed away on November 3,

2015 at home with his wife and children at his side; Bob Dylan playing in the background.

Rik was the son of Doris and Henrik Olaf in Tacoma, Washington. He grew up in Kent, when Kent was still farmland, the oldest of 6 children, and milked a cow every day before school until he was 14. In high school, Rik was the captain of the basketball and football teams.

He played Husky football for four years, went to the Rose Bowl, and out of college played 6 seasons in the NFL as an offensive guard for the Saint Louis Cardinals. Rik left the game of football when the game no longer reflected his values and to focus on his civil rights and anti-war activism.

Rik returned to UW and received a masters in public administration. He was a proud member of International Socialists. Rik worked for the NLRB, where he continued to fight the good fight; serving as the national president of the NLRBU, representing the rights of the worker and negotiating numerous labor contracts. He testified before the Senate in Washington D.C. RIk was always on the side of the worker.

He was fiercely loyal to his family, had exquisite taste, cooked wonderful meals, loved to fish, woodwork, watch Formula One racing, appreciated anything that was finely crafted, and gave everything he did his all. He knew who he was, the difference between right and wrong, and fought the good fight till the end.

He had 2 sons, Eric Martin and Christopher Mark, with his former wife, and in 1989 Henrik married Elizabeth Kaye and had baby girl Ava Kaye. They lived in Ballard and Los Angeles.

Rik is preceded in death by his parents, son Chris, and brother Gary.

He is survived by his wife Liz; daughter Ava; son Eric; siblings Einar, Wayne, Sandy, and Chris; and extended family.

Your presence was huge, the hole you leave will be enormous. We love you so much.

Service and reception will be held 12/12/15 at 12pm in the Wisteria Hall at the Graham Visitor Center in the Washington Park Arboretum.
Published in The Seattle Times from Dec. 4 to Dec. 5, 2015
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