Donald Kauffman

Donald Edward Kauffman

March 8, 1920 — December 11, 2013

Donald Edward Kauffman, 93, of Friday Harbor, Wash. passed away of natural causes Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013 at the Life Care Center of San Juan Island following a brief hospitalization.

Don was born March 8, 1920 in Seattle, Wash. to Paul and Inga (Dybsetter) Kauffman. Don grew up in Seattle and graduated from Franklin High School in 1938.

After high school he attended the University of Washington, graduating in 1942 with a degree in zoology/fisheries. He entered the Army during WWII and served as a medical technician during the European Theater of Operations.

Following the war, he went to work as a biologist for Libby, McNeill & Libby, surveying shellfish and fish resources in Alaska, and for the Bureau of Fisheries surveying fish resources in the Philippines.

Don married Gertrude Katherine Aho in 1947 in Seattle, Wash. They were happily married for 58 years until her passing in January 2005.

In 1950, Don went to work for the Washington Department of Fisheries in Seattle, Wash. The family was relocated to Olympia, Wash. in 1963 and he retired in 1980 as the assistant director in charge of management and research.

Don and Kathy moved to the family home on San Juan Island in 1988, where they enjoyed the serenity of Mitchell Bay and the company of many special friends and neighbors. Don enjoyed woodworking and was an avid sports fisherman, hunter and gardener. He was a member of the San Juan Power Squadron for many years.

Don was preceded in death by his parents, Paul and Inga Kauffman; his sister, Grace Hoeppner; his wife, Kathy and his son, Paul Kauffman. Don is survived by his daughter, Connie (Neil) Patterson of Olympia, Wash.; his son, Bruce (Mary) Kauffman of Ocean Park, Wash.; his grandchildren, Kari, Evan, Loren, Aaron, Katie, Nicholas, and Carrie and his dog, Skipper.

This kind, gentle man will be greatly missed by family and friends. A memorial service is planned for the spring of 2014. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to: The San Juan Eagles c/o Vickie Thalacker, 41 Griffin View Lane, Friday Harbor, WA 98250, or San Juan Senior Services, P.O. Box 951, Friday Harbor, WA 98250, Wendy Stephens, Coordinator (phone: 360-378-2677 V/TDD; fax: 360-378-6100).

Arrangements are in the care of Evans Funeral Chapel and Crematory, Anacortes and the San Juan Islands. To share memories of Don, please sign the online guest register at

—Family of Donald Kauffman