Mark W. Thompson

Feature

Mark W. Thompson, 88, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Jan. 22, 2021. Mark was born Feb. 10, 1932, in Sumas, Washington, to John and Beatta Thompson. Mark spent his childhood on his family’s farm, where his favorite chore was making popcorn for his five older siblings, a tradition he later carried on with his grandchildren. He graduated from Nooksack Valley High School in 1949 and went on to attend the University of Washington, where he was a proud member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity.

During college, Mark met Joene Valdason on a date that Joene got Mark’s friend to arrange in exchange for a pair of hand-knit argyle socks. Thrilled to never have a dull moment in conversation, Mark asked her on a second date. They married a few years later and celebrated their 65th anniversary last April. Mark graduated from UW in 1953 and enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He retired as a lieutenant after 10 years of service and went into the nursing home business, starting in Hoquiam, Washington, and later expanding in several states.

Mark and Joene raised their four children in Aberdeen, Washington, where Mark was involved in Rotary, the YMCA and the Episcopal church in Hoquiam. He and his family spent their summers on Hood Canal, where he and Joene later retired.

Mark cherished his time on Hood Canal; teaching the kids to water ski, driving his tractor and listening to his Johnny Cash CD on the deck. A lifelong UW fan, Mark spent football seasons at Husky Stadium, enjoying tailgates with friends, family and even strangers. Mark and Joene looked forward to winters on Maui, sipping mai-tais and playing cards. Mark enjoyed taking road trips with Joene, entertaining friends and family at Hood Canal and making loved ones laugh with his signature Donald Duck impression. Mark’s humility, patience and unconditional love won him our “what-a-guy what-a-guy award.”

Mark is survived by his wife, Joene; their four children: Jeff (Mebie), Julie Colgan (Rick), Jayme Morrison (Kevin) and Jade Gussel (Gary); 10 grandchildren: Mark (Alexandra), Mallory (Malcolm), Marshall (Shannon), Jace, Mykelle, Avery, Claire, Griffin, Markie and Chandler; two great-grandchildren: Bergen and Julia; and his sister, Alice Blohm.

At this time, only a small family service will be held. Donations can be made to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation: Text PFFTribute769 to 71777