Peter J. Wangoe Sr. passed Sept. 22 after a short illness at age 92. A Danish-American with ties to both countries he had a passion for life, was a multi-linguist and graduate of Copenhagen Business College.
His airline career spanned both continents — starting in 1947 as station manager of CSA at Copenhagen-Kastrup Airport, Denmark. Interpreter for Pan Am at LaGuardia Airport, New York. Purser for non-scheduled “charter flights” assisting the Hungarian Airlift and the Korean Airlift — flying out of LaGuardia Airport, New York or Alameda Airport, California. The commercial side of MATS. Joined Pacific Airlines at Monterey Airport, California, in the ‘60s — which merged to Air West, Hughes Air West, Republic, Northwest and eventually Delta Airlines from which he retired.
He enlisted in the United States Air Force in the early ‘50s, and was assigned to Europe as an intelligence officer.
Peter and his wife Jenny were also vested in commercial businesses in California and Washington State.
The family moved to Friday Harbor in 1975 from Carmel-by-the-Sea, California when they purchased the Moore Motel and renamed it the Friday Harbor Motor Inn. Subsequently they purchased the San Juan Hotel and owned and operated both until the late ‘70s. He was a member of the Town of Friday Harbor Planning Committee under Mayor Jim Browne.
His passion was photography and travel of which he enjoyed both throughout the world! He was so proud of his “Best in Class” Ribbon for his portrait photo at the 2014 San Juan County Fair. His specialty was portrait photography and wife Jenny was his favorite model.
He met and married the love of his life, Jenny — a stewardess with American Airlines based in Dallas, Texas. He was a devoted and loving husband. They celebrated their 52nd Wedding Anniversary in September.
Peter J. Wangoe Sr. is survived by his wife Jenny of Friday Harbor, Washington; son Peter II of Grapevine, Texas; daughter Barbara of Haiku, Hawaii; son Richard of Big Sur, California; granddaughter Devon and her husband David; and great-grandson Corey, of Thun, Switzerland.
He was preceded in death by his parents Eigil and Sonja; and grandparents Sophus and Marie. The two men were prominent cinematographers in the Danish and German film industry during the Golden Age of Silent Film producing over 100 films.
A celebration of Life will take place at a future date.