Thomas Wayne Doolittle (Wayne)

Thomas Wayne Doolittle (Wayne) passed away on Wednesday, June 22, 2022.

Thomas Wayne Doolittle (Wayne) passed away on Wednesday, June 22, 2022. He was 93 years of age.

Wayne was the third child born to Arthur Lincoln and Mabel Vivian (Lacefield) Doolittle on Feb. 8, 1929, at their home in Grass Creek, Washington during a snowstorm. He shared the same birthday with his twin great-granddaughters Rylie and Kylie Tinklepaugh.

Wayne was born during the depression and this set the trajectory of a life of working hard, overcoming everything that came his way, never giving up, and always having a sincere care for others. Wayne grew up in Grass Creek, attended Hoquiam Schools, and enjoyed living near the ocean.

Wayne had many interesting jobs during his life. He spent time in Alaska working for Walt Sperl on the mail boat called the Jacobi. This was a perilous job in the winter months delivering mail and supplies to various isolated communities along the rugged Alaska coast. A book titled “Wake of an Alaskan Mailboat” was written about this boat and its experiences. Later Wayne worked for Quigg Brothers on a tugboat shipping gravel from a quarry near Montesano to Hoquiam. During the Korean War Wayne was drafted and served in the United States Army as a Medic. Wayne sustained a serious back injury while in the service and struggled with it for the rest of his life, although he never ever let this stop him from his many adventures and entrepreneurial business ventures. While on furlough he made a trip to Kansas to see his sister Betty and her husband Cliff Brown and met the love of his life Fannie Elizabeth (Leake) Doolittle. They were married two years later and just recently celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary. They made their first home in San Francisco, California where Wayne was stationed while in the Army.

Wayne lived and worked in Grays Harbor all his life. He worked with Norval Lawty for many years both in Lake Quinault and Aberdeen. They formed a friendship and partnership that lasted the rest of their lives. He often referred to Norval as the brother he always wanted. Wayne also had a brief stint as a fuel delivery truck driver for Western Farmers delivering fuel to local farms and logging companies. Wayne managed Harbor McCulloch Sales for many years and sold scores of International trucks and vehicles as well as McCulloch chainsaws, and Goodyear tires. He was extremely hard working, engaging, and great at sales. He probably could have sold deep freezes to Eskimos.

One of Wayne’s ‘most enjoyable activities’ was fishing. Wayne and Norval were partners in an ocean-going boat called the “Playtime II”. In fact, he loved it so much that he missed his grandson Kyle’s Grandparents Day at school one time and when Kyle’s teacher asked him why his Grandpa wasn’t there, Kyle responded that his Grandpa had fish eggs for brains.

Growing up Karla and Mike were very fortunate to have two parents that modeled love, commitment, hard work and partnership. Wayne was so proud of his family. He said to his sister, Shirley, that he wasn’t going to be one of those silly old grandfathers. He said this just prior to the birth of his first granddaughter, Lisa. After Lisa’s arrival, he said, “I am one of those silly old grandpas.”

Karla and Larry moved back to Washington when Lisa and Tami were small, growing up next to their grandparents was very special for Lisa, Tami, and Kyle. Grandpa provided endless fun for them. Farm animals, go-kart racing, tote gotes, motorcycle rides, four wheelers, digging swimming pools, fishing, sleigh rides in the winter behind his tractor, the list goes on and on. Mike, being a lot like his father, was interested at a very young age in business too. Wayne helped Mike as a very young boy to start and run his own small tractor service business. It’s not surprising that Mike is a successful business owner today.

Wayne had another great love and stability in his life, and that was his faith. He never preached his faith, but he lived it. He and Fannie enjoyed their bible studies with many friends and attending the church that met in their home and the home of their lifelong friends, Bob and Ruth Smith. We have many sweet memories to take with us and appreciate his footprints left behind for others to follow.

Wayne passed away peacefully on June 22, 2022, and is survived by his wife of 70 years, Fannie Elizabeth Doolittle of Hoquiam, daughter Karla (Larry) Smith of Montesano; son Mike Doolittle of Ocean Shores. Grandchildren Lisa (Steve) Tinklepaugh of Mt. Vernon, Washington; Tamila (Gerry) Oppliger of Camas, Washington; Kyle (Emily) Smith of Farmington, Utah; Malia Doolittle of Corvallis, Oregon. Great-grandchildren Braedyn Tinklepaugh, Rylie Tinklepaugh, Kylie Tinklepaugh, Danilyn Oppliger, Andiee Smith and Hudson Smith.

Wayne is survived by one sister Shirley Doolittle. Wayne also had three other sisters which previously passed away, Juanita Sloan, Betty Brown, Charlotte Farquharson and of course, his parents, Art and Mabel Doolittle.

Wayne touched countless lives besides his large and widespread family. He will be greatly missed but our memories will live on.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. on Thursday, July 7, 2022, at Robert Gray Elementary School, 1516 North B Street, Aberdeen, WA 98520.

An urn committal with military honors will be at 2 p.m. on Thursday, July 28, 2022, at Tahoma National Cemetery.

Arrangements are by the Coleman Mortuary in Hoquiam.

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