Mystery helicopters most likely not the Easter bunny, United Nations



The whump whump of a helicopter heard thundering above Central Kitsap during the early hours of Easter morning was likely a King County Sheriff’s Office helicopter on its way to help rescue an injured hiker in Jefferson County.

Reports of the low-flying helicopter came in from Seabeck to Silverdale and Bremerton, where windows were rattled, sleep was disturbed, questions were raised and the possibility of a United Nations invasion was pondered (by me).

The King County helicopter was sent to The Brothers mountains – across Hood Canal from Seabeck – to hoist the hiker and take him to Harborview Medical Center, said Deputy BJ Myers, spokesman for the office. The office’s Facebook page was updated at 12:25 a.m. to say the helicopter, known as Guardian 2, was preparing to launch.

Myers said the helicopter is known as being noisy. One person in Silverdale said it sounded like it was going to land on their roof. A man in Seabeck commented it did two passes over his house, which he found “rude.”

“It’s a super loud helicopter,” Myers said. “I know exactly what they are talking about.”

There was a medical airlift from Bainbridge Island at about 4:30 a.m. following a car crash. Tom Struck of Airlift Northwest said the helicopter took off from Boeing Field, went directly to Bainbridge and then flew to Harborview Medical Center.

“There’s no reason for us to do anything but fly a straight line back and forth,” he said, noting that the medical airlift helicopters are relatively quiet and generally do not generate complaints except for during warm weather when people sleep with their windows open.

Struck offered an alternative theory, however.

“One other thing it could have been was the Easter bunny.”

Aggressive human jailed in row over hot dog

hot dog


One woman got punched in the head, twice, another got grabbed by the throat and had claw marks down her chest. Another went to jail.

The dog, however, emerged uninjured.

As the weather warms up and people leave pets in the car while they run errands, and other people keep an eye out for those pets lest they perish in the car, an incident last week over a dog left in an SUV shows how volatile and aggressive humans can be when it comes to dogs.

A Poulsbo woman who routinely patrols parking lots looking for dogs in distress applauded the women who removed the dog last Tuesday, as well as the Bremerton Police officer who said the dog removers acted “in good faith” and were not cited. However, she thinks lawmakers need to write a law making sure good Samaritans are protected.

Here is what happened:

A 52-year-old Port Orchard woman took her friend’s teenage daughters to a show at the movie theater on Fourth Street in Bremerton. She left her dog inside her car. She cracked the windows and left it a bowl of water.

Meanwhile, employees of a nearby business believed the unseasonably warm weather and direct sunlight was putting the dog in distress (A National Weather Service meteorologist said the high for the day was 61 degrees). They called police for a check on the dog, but nobody arrived. They tried breaking the window, to no avail.

One of the employees – the one who got choked – has skinny arms and she was able to reach into the SUV and unlock the door, releasing the dog.

When the 52-year-old Port Orchard woman returned from watching a movie, all hell broke loose. At first she thought the dog had been stolen, so she called 911. While on the phone, the employees approached her with the dog.

The employee said the Port Orchard woman was calm at first, but then attacked her. The Port Orchard woman said she felt threatened. During the punching, the other employee tried to intervene, the report said, but that’s when the suspect grabbed her by the throat. The two teenage girls were shocked by what they saw and refused to go with the woman.

The Port Orchard woman’s husband came and said he would take the dog, the teenage girls and the SUV. The woman was arrested for two counts of fourth-degree assault. When she inquired about the removal of her dog, the officer said, “It appeared that it was a good faith effort for the safety of the dog,” according to the report.

Last summer I wrote about Sandra Crump, who almost instinctively roves parking lots on hot days looking for dogs left in cars.

She knows how quickly those confrontations can escalate. She has never been punched or grabbed by the throat, but one time an “elderly gentleman” started swinging his cane at her, using “filthy and vile language.”

“He limped through parking lot after me, his wife was aghast,” she said, who has a sense of humor about herself, and has called her fixation on looking for overheated dogs a “curse.”

It can also lead to violent encounters. You never know who you might be upsetting, or what kind of frame of mind they might be in when you confront them.

“I guess they are embarrassed,” she said of those she has confronted. “People don’t want to be told don’t beat your kid. ‘It’s my kid.’ People don’t want to have others interfere with their property. But (a dog) has rights.”

Crump believes state lawmakers should clarify that a residents will not be subject to prosecution, although local law enforcement officials have said if one acts in good faith to save a life — dog or human or otherwise — they are unlikely to get in trouble for breaking a window or entering somebody else’s car.

Aside from legal protections, Crump said a new law would raise awareness and might help eliminate the practice of leaving dogs in cars entirely.

She said she was relieved to hear about the people who freed the dog last week, saying it made her feel less lonely.

“I’m not the only nutcase out there,” she said.

First person shooter: Scenario training helps cops prepare for high-pressure encounters

This guy is going 90 mph so I pull him over. He is irate, apparently at me, and although I have never seen him before in my life, he wants me to kill him. What I’m really afraid of is that he will try to kill me first.

He’s white, 30s, driving an SUV, and that’s all I really recall. I guess he said he intended to shoot me, but I don’t remember that. I don’t remember much, including how many bullets I fired into him before he slumped to the ground.

This is a drill, only a drill, on a training simulator a few weeks ago in the basement of the Bremerton Police Department. At this point, nobody associated Pasco with Ferguson or Staten Island.

Although questions about the use of force by police have been steadily in the center of the national consciousness since the shooting death of Michael Brown by a Missouri city police officer in August, the fatal shooting Tuesday of a rock-throwing man by police in the Tri-Cities has brought the discussion home again.

The scenario is projected on a wall. An officer at the controls can escalate or tone down the situation, the weapons on my “belt” are borrowed from Laser Tag, but for our purposes they are a Taser and a Glock.

The man who just led me on a 90 mph chase to a residential neighborhood is screaming at me, telling me to shoot him.

“C’mon!” he keeps screaming at me.

I keep telling him to calm down, just calm down and we can talk about it. He keeps screaming. He’s going back to the truck. What has he got in the truck? He’s not listening to me, he’s out of control. I reach for my Taser.

Showing the public the scenario training demonstrates to non-cops the preheated conflicts officers waltz into, however, Police Chief Steve Strachan said it isn’t meant to shock people into concluding the police are always right. They are human, Strachan said, they make mistakes and should be held accountable. The point of training is to reduce mistakes.

In the same way police work to understand the challenges of dealing with a diverse population, including the mentally ill, he said showing city officials, ministers and a reporter the exercises can expand the discussion. It can help the public understand how police train to secure the safety of others, themselves and choose the appropriate level of force under terrifying circumstances.

“It isn’t to say anything the police do is justified,” Strachan said. “Because it isn’t.”

It is, however, terrifying.

Bremerton City Councilwoman Leslie Daugs talked down a disturbed man holding a gun to his head, while training her gun on him.

“Oh my God, I’m sweating,” she said after the man put the gun down.

Even with unarmed people, situations can spin out of control. In addition to weapons, lethal and non-lethal, officers use their hands, but they are limited to their size, strength and speed. If they choose the wrong person to grapple with, their weapons can be used against them.

“Every time I’m in fight with a guy who is unarmed, there is still a gun in that fight,” said Officer Duke Roessel.

Currently, a fatal June shooting of Thomas Daniel Rogers, 36, by Port Orchard Police is under review by Prosecutor Tina Robinson. Police had gone to arrest Rogers on felony warrants from Oklahoma for sexually assaulting children. Rogers, who investigators said was armed with a kitchen knife, allegedly wounded one officer in the encounter. In an eerie coincidence, in October, Rogers’ brother, Jason Rogers, 35, was fatally shot by police in Oklahoma following up a domestic violence report. Jason Rogers allegedly pulled a gun on the officers, according to media reports.

Incidents involving force are usually inflammatory, one of the lesser reasons Strachan said he has never known a cop who wanted to use his or her gun. When the incidents are caught on video, the situation explodes. On top of the issue of police accountability and training, the deaths trigger frustrations people have with poverty and racism, Strachan said.

“I’m not justifying anything, I don’t know what happened,” Strachan said of the Pasco shooting. But when videos can be watched over and over, “People want an answer now, they want a statement that is strong now.”

He added, “It doesn’t feel good, but we have to take a step back.”

Back to my suicide by cop, who is a step away from the SUV and is saying something I can’t remember.

He’s going back to the vehicle, like he is going to show me. Whatever it is, I don’t want to see it.

Gun, I think. Gun. Oh, crap, he’s going for a gun.

I reach for my Taser. Good old trusty Taser. That should do the trick. A little non-lethal force. He’ll go down and we’ll both be fine.

“Taser failed!” I hear from behind me. Taser failed. It takes a second to sink in. Taser failed. I don’t really have a second to ponder the meaning of those words. My stomach drops. I don’t have time to think.

I’m still yelling at him to get away from the vehicle, to calm down, to just calm down.

He’s not listening. “OK,” I say out loud, as if to say, you asked for it.

Out comes the Glock. Both hands. Finger on the trigger. He’s got something in his hands. It’s the butt of a gun. It’s a shotgun. I’m focused on the barrel. He’s holding it like a gift he wants to give me. I’m waiting. What am I waiting for? The guy is smiling. He’s actually smiling. I can’t wait until I’m staring down the business end of that thing, I don’t want to do this.

He’s turning it on me. He’s still smiling.

I pull the trigger. I don’t know how many times. Maybe two? Maybe just once?

The guy crumpled. I killed him.

My scenario was pretty clear-cut. He was armed, and not with a rock. He was facing me and went for a gun, not his driver’s license. He moved slow enough that I had more time to react than I likely would have had in real life.

The lights come on. I’m shaking.

The great Puget Sound Energy swindle … explained


It’s not unusual for a business to get scammed, and it’s not extraordinary for a police officer to investigate and find, yup, they got scammed.

What isn’t typical is when a police officer rings up a confidence man and has a nice, straightforward chat about how the con works and ends with an apology from the swindler for an off-color comment he made to his vic and a wish that the officer “be safe and have a blessed day.”

Bremerton police were called Tuesday by a member of the family that owns the Mannette Mart and Deli, 2044 Wheaton Way, reporting that one of the family received a call from a person claiming to be an bill collector for Puget Sound Energy. The person said the store was in arrears $858 — which was not true — and in order to keep the power from being shut off they had to pay that day through a wire transfer service.

The family member paid $500 to before realizing they had been tricked. When the family member’s daughter called to demand the money back, the scammer said her voice was “sexy” and that “she should meet him in person so she could get her money back,” according to a police report.

When the police officer called, and identified himself and asked the confidence man if he was willing to answer a few questions, the man said, “Of course.”

Considering the person is a con artist, it’s hard to say if the answers he gave the officer were just more rubbish, but the glimpse it does give is plausible.

The thief said he works as part of a team that targets a particular area code, paying close attention to businesses, as they seem to pay more and more often. Although it may seem to a victim that the con artist has access to account information, no, the man said — and then laughed — it’s a matter of asking “subtle questions” which lead victims to unknowingly provide important information.

The man said he is in Jamaica and works with a small group, and the money they scam goes into a pot and is divided up. The scammers try to get at least $1,000 a vic, because if they get less than others “it causes problems.”

And although it sounded to the victim like they were speaking to multiple people, no, that’s just him disguising his voice. He said he lived in New York City for 19 years and is adept at “sounding professional.”

As he was wrapping up the Q and A, the officer mentioned that one of the people he spoke with was more upset at how the con man spoke to her.

The man “apologized and stated he was just having a little fun.”

The officer thanked the man and asked that he not call the victim back, and the con man agreed.

At the end of the conversation the man “told me to be safe and have a blessed day,” the officer wrote.


Top 10 frivolous lawsuits of 2014


To get people in the mood for Christmas, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce compiled a list of the “most ridiculous” lawsuits of 2014.

“Ridiculous,” of course, is in the eye of the beholder. The beholder in this case is a U.S. Chamber website that calls itself “Faces of Lawsuit of Abuse.”

This from the site:

“This list puts a light-hearted face on a serious problem: that as a country, we simply sue too much,” said Lisa A. Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform. “In fact, the collective toll that abusive lawsuits take on our society and our economy is no laughing matter. Lawsuits should be a last resort, not a first option.”

This lecture on abusing government resources of course comes from an organization that spent about $92 million lobbying the government in 2014.

Here is the list.

Call me ridiculous, but at least one of the “ridiculous” lawsuits is a little sympathetic.

One woman, who apparently likes sprouts, was unhappy when her Jimmy Johns brand food product did not include sprouts as advertised. So she sued.

Sure, it was probably not a good idea. But who hasn’t been lied to, snubbed, or otherwise dismissed when trying to give money to a company? Who hasn’t wanted to summon the full force of our courts to send a message to our food product providers that we want sprouts, darn it!

Proposal would make Supreme Court race partisan

State Rep. Sherry Appleton, D-Poulsbo, has signed onto a measure to make the race for state Supreme Court partisan, just like the Legislature and the governor’s office.

The main sponsor of the bill, prefiled Friday in advance of the Jan. 12 legislative session, is state Rep. Richard DeBolt, R-Chehalis, who is on the conservative side of the Democrat-controlled state House. Appleton is on the liberal side.

However, the Seattle Times reports, the bill’s sponsors may be making a statement with the proposal. Instead of really wanting the Supreme Court race to be partisan, they are sort of slapping at the justices. Or maybe think of it as shooting rubber bands. Or maybe it’s closer to writing unflattering things about them on a lavatory wall.

The Court has ruled that the state is failing its primary duty to educate kids, putting the Legislature on the hook to figure out how to fix/pay for the education system. It has also found the Legislature in contempt. Apparently, the Legislature is quaking in its boots.

Here is the revealing text from the measure, to give you an idea of where the sponsors are coming from:

“The legislature finds that because the supreme court has decided to act like the legislature and has thus violated the separation of powers, the supreme court should be considered partisan like the legislature.”

Anonymous Seahawk buys Kevlar vest for Mason Co. Sheriff’s dog

Dep Cotte & K9 Solo

A Kevlar vest for a Mason County Sheriff’s Office tracking dog was bought with money donated by an anonymous Seattle Seahawk, the office announced Thursday.

A 3-year-old German shepherd named Solo, who is regularly called to help track down dangerous suspects, will wear the “Storm Vest.” Solo’s handler is Deputy Justin Cotte.

The vest cost $2,300, and was donated by a group called “All K9s Go To Heaven.” The group solicits donations, then purchases and donates the equipment.

The office’s K-9 program is paid for by private donations, and the office would not be able to afford equipment like the vest, the statement said. The office has three dogs.

Police dogs often are first to encounter suspects, and often enough are injured and killed in the line of duty.

A Bremerton Police dog, Buddy, was shot and killed by a suspect in Lion’s Park in 2001.

The office also has an Education K9 Team, which includes a Great Dane named Jack who often sports toenails painted pink, meant to engage students in a discussion about bullying.

PDC to investigate allegation from prosecutor primary

The state election watchdog is going to investigate allegations of improper campaign spending during the summer’s contentious county prosecutor primary.

The spending in question was for $6,300 worth of advertisements which ran in the Kitsap Sun during the primary election. The money came from the union representing deputy prosecutors, which was supporting Prosecutor Russ Hauge’s unsuccessful reelection bid. A state Public Disclosure Commission spokeswoman said Wednesday the investigative process can take about three months. If violations are found to have occurred, the commission has the authority to fine those responsible – be it individuals or the Deputy Prosecutors Guild itself – up to $10,000.

Here is an account of the complaint from July.

Hauge made it through the primary as the top voter-getter – with Republican Tina Robinson taking second – but then lost in the Nov. 4 general election to Robinson by 1 percent of the vote. She will take over the office at the beginning of the year.

Robinson and the two other primary candidates, Democrat Bob Scales and independent Bruce Danielson, signed the complaint.

Hauge and former Guild President Chad Enright told the Sun at the time of the complaint that there was no cooperation between Hauge and the Guild.

However, the complaint alleges in part that because the ads allegedly used material copy and pasted from Hauge’s campaign site and linked back to the campaign site, they amount to some level of coordination, which would then make the $6,300 spent count as a direct campaign contributions. If that were the case, it would be counted under state contribution limits and would exceed them.

Scales said Wednesday he was frustrated that the process took so long, and may take longer still. He said the spending, which he believes was improper, did help Hauge and diluted his own advertising campaign. He also said that a complaint from Hauge’s campaign about Scales’ signs prompted an immediate response from the PDC, but the complaint he is a party to has taken months.

“Everything is after the fact,” Scales said. “It takes so long to do anything, what is the point?”

Scales believes the investigation will find improper coordination and despite the time that has passed, a fine would serve as a deterrent to other campaigns.

Lori Anderson, spokeswoman for the PDC, said when complaints are received they undergo a “triage” process, where they are evaluated to determine if some immediate action can be taken to settle the dispute. The complaint was handled the same as others, she said, and added the commission does not have additional employees to handle complaints during campaign season.

She said in this case, even if the material in the ad was replaced with other images, and the links were changed or removed, the underlying allegation of improper campaign spending would not have been resolved.

When it comes to murder, it’s all about who you know



Marc Chagall, Cain et Abel, 1960

For getting jobs, getting into college and getting murdered, it all depends on who you know. And despite what your parents told you about strangers, it isn’t strangers who pose you the most danger.

The four charged murders so far this year in Kitsap, and one as yet uncharged murder, shed a grim light on this fact. What may be unusual is how the deed is alledged to have been done.

For some, this might be unsurprising, especially those who work with victims of crime, and especially sexual assault victims, as sexual assaults by perfect strangers are rare when compared to the majority of these crimes. But for people who don’t spend their time slogging through the finer details of the human condition, they might be apt to think of murder as typically an impersonal, random act, something performed by an “other.”

But the truth is, when it comes to murder most foul, it usually isn’t strangers who pose the biggest threat.

Consider these facts about murder in Kitsap this year:

-Four of the suspected five murders so far this year are considered “domestic violence,” and the fifth suspect was a trusted neighbor.

-But what do you think when you hear domestic violence and murder? A woman being killed by a male intimate partner? In fact, three of the five victims were men, two were suspected of being killed by the female in an intimate relationship, the third is suspect of being killed by his adult daughter. Again, not surprising for many who work in the muck. We often hear how women are seen as sex objects by society, but not much about how men are seen as violence objects. As such, men are more likely than women to be victims of violence. This is not to minimize the violence suffered by women.

-That also isn’t to say men haven’t been accused of killing females, but not intimate partners. In those cases, the males are suspected of killing young girls. One an infant daughter by her father, one a 6-year-old girl by the neighbor boy.

-Although guns may be the easiest way to kill a person, not a single charged or suspected murder in Kitsap in 2014 was committed with a firearm. There were shootings, in fact the year wasn’t more than an hour old before a guy at a hotel party in Bremerton got shot. Good luck, bad marksmanship, quick responses from medics or easy access to helicopters to get the wounded out of Kitsap might take credit for the fact nobody has been murdered with a gun. * Yet. Knock on wood.

-In fact, when it comes to weapons, just a single case is alleged to involve a conventional weapon, and it was a knife, and that one hasn’t been charged.

Senior Deputy Prosecutor Kelly Montgomery said the cases so far this year don’t jibe with what many might assume makes up a murder, but the fact that the suspects had a relationship with the deceased is not that out of the ordinary.

“Every case has its own facts,” she said, but conceded the murder cases this year are a little strange. “We scratch our heads a little.”

“The lay person might think of murder as when a person is shot with a gun, or stabbed, and it is a stranger who is the suspect,” she said. But it doesn’t take a gun or a knife to kill somebody, and often enough, the suspect is a person who was in a position of trust, and that can shake our assumptions about those we are close to and who we see as the “other.” Murder is rare, but it doesn’t look far for its victims.

“That is something we don’t want to see as possible,” Montgomery said.

None of the murder cases from this year have made it to trial. Here they are:

Shelly Margaret Arndt, 45, is charged with first-degree murder and first-degree arson for the Feb. 23 death of Darcy Edward Veeder Jr. of Bremerton. Arndt, who has a previous arson conviction for setting a fire in 2011 in a home while Veeder slept, is scheduled to go to trial April 20. She had a second arson charge tacked onto the case from another fire she allegedly set in 2011, but that charge was dismissed last week.

Renee Roberta Nash, 59, is charged with second-degree murder for neglecting her elderly father, Harlan Haynes, 97, who was found in their squalid South Kitsap home March 12. An autopsy found Haynes died of malnutrition and dehydration, and had depended on his daughter for his care. Reports say Nash did not report Haynes’ death for two days. Nash is scheduled to go to trial Dec. 8.

Hector Francisco Saavedra Ruiz, 21, of Kingston, is charged with second-degree murder for the July 16 death of his infant daughter, Natalie. Doctors suspected the child had died from being shaken, and had a broken bone that was healing. Saavedra had taken the child to show her to coworkers, and was said to have smoked meth prior to taking the baby. His trial is also scheduled for Dec. 8.

Gabriel Zebediah Gaeta, 17, is charged with first-degree murder and first-degree rape of a child for the death of 6-year-old Jenise Wright, who was reported missing Aug. 3. The two were neighbors in the same East Bremerton mobile home park. Jenise was found to have died of blunt force trauma, and Gaeta’s DNA was found on an article of clothing belonging to the girl. He is expected to plead not guilty to the charges Oct. 31.

Alan Charpentier, 54, died from knife wounds after fleeing his East Bremerton house Aug. 31 in what his family believes was a murder-suicide attempt. As neighbors gave him aid, Charpentier identified his estranged wife, 55, as his attacker. An autopsy found he had been sprayed in the face with pepper spray before being stabbed, according to court documents. After the attack, the woman is believed to have spread fuel around their house and started a fire, leaving her with burns and smoke inhalation injuries. After having her condition upgraded last week, this week a spokeswoman for Harborview Medical Center in Seattle said the woman was back in the Intensive Care Unit.

 *There is one fatal shooting by police currently under review.

They called him Lee: The glorious life and strange death of Leon Shaw



The life of Leon Shaw, who died Sept. 14, was larger than most, and if there is a pantheon of glorious Kitsap residents, he deserves honorable mention. Maybe he isn’t in the category of Chief Seattle or Delilah, but maybe the pantheon needs to make some room. From mentoring a bull, to telling the future, to mastering ping pong, to wowing women so often his own sister lost track the number of marriages he had, Lee lived a full life to the fullest. And let us not overlook that sweet mustache. If he was your friend, he would give you the shirt off his back, and not just because he looked good without a shirt.

On Sunday there will be a memorial for this son of South Kitsap. Lee’s family and friends will gather at 3 p.m. at the Port Orchard Pavilion, 701 Bay Street. The service is open to the public.

Lee was born at Harrison Medical Center in Bremerton and was raised in Port Orchard. If he would have graduated from South Kitsap High School, he would have been class of 1979. He loved the song “Heart of Glass” by Blondie and used to practice John Travolta’s disco moves. He has a son, who is said to be a spitting image of his father, which is a blessing to the world.

His ability to tell the future came in sudden waves, said his sister Barb.

On one occasion he was riding in a car with their mother and had a vision of him getting dropped off and his mother continuing on and dying in a wreck. His face blanched and then he refused to get out of the car. He might have saved her life.

“Too bad he didn’t visualize his own death before, so he could have prevented it,” Barb said.

Lee’s death, or what is known of it, bizarre and untimely as it is, boggles the mind, and seems so unfair in light of his amazing life. Here is what we know: He met a woman online. They went on a date and had a few drinks, nothing wrong with that. They went to the house of a friend of Lee’s, a tattoo artist. The friend began tattooing the date’s chest. OK.

Well, then Lee’s date becomes “intimate” with his friend. Safe to assume this prompted a “What the hell?” moment from Lee. Reports say a conflict ensued, and that the date hit Lee, and Lee hit her back. They leave. Next thing anyone knows, Lee is dead, likely from being run over. The woman is behind the wheel of Lee’s truck, and has driven over an embankment and is seriously injured. OK then.

This all happened in Gig Harbor, where Lee had been staying with a friend, so it is the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office investigating. A spokesman for the department said Friday investigators are waiting on the results of blood tests.

For a press account, here is the Tacoma News Tribune’s version of events.

Lee’s obituary reads like a piece of folklore, the kind of obituary that should get its own genre. It is definitely the greatest obit I have ever read, and I’ve read a few. The photo, too, is epic. It shows a mountain of a man on the high seas, astraddle a gunwale, what might be a can o’beer in his hand, naked save for well-fitting dungarees presumably because he just gave a friend the shirt off his back. His bronze pecs glisten in the sun, the wind lifts back his wavy mane. He gives an easy smile, along with the peace sign. Damn. All the women wanted to date him, the men would have wanted to date him too if they had any sense.

Here is the obit, in its entirety. It is too well-written, too poetic, to try to summarize like a press release, or to just provide a link. Savor it.

Leon Robert Shaw

June 10, 1961 to Sept. 14, 2014

He was a guy that loved to make you laugh. He had a presence about him when he walked into a room. He stood nearly 6’4” and was handsomely well-built. You’d want this guy for a friend. He had a sweetness that grabbed at your heart strings. He was a very hard worker, he could master just about anything he tried in short order. His word was his bond. You knew you could count on him.

Though he never won any trophies for pool or Ping-Pong, he was one of the best. He liked being athletic to keep his muscles tone. At 10 years old, he had a lawn mowing route in the area of the Forest Park grocers. In South Kitsap High, he was the only boy in the soprano singing section. Then his voice went to bass and he grew four inches in three months.

He ran away from home at 15 and got a job at the golf course on Long Lake Road. He came back to finish his youth. He found work in construction.

He loved his dad teaching him to ride a motorbike, which he taught his sister Barb when she was 15. He loved to go fast and take risks. He had visions, and could predict the future at times, he believed this was due to him being 1/4 Nez Percé Indian. He loved nature and going camping. He was a dead shot with a rifle. All the farm animals loved him. He raised a bull that he could do anything with, while the neighbors sat on an old panel van in the field, as the bull thrashed his horns on the van. That same bull caught our chicken thieves. He had chickens jump on his arm at the snap of his fingers. And when he ran away, our Doberman was so sad he just slept on his dirty clothes.

At age 11, he built a two-story tree house 50 feet up an old maple. He and his brother hoisted up a queen size mattress. Our dad, Leon Sr., gave us a ferry rope to tie up and swing from.

Survivors include BFF, Keith Hoppe (53); his only child, son Jared Burbee (32); mom, Mildred White (76); half sister, Connie DeBoard (60); half sister, Faythe Neese (56); brother, David Shaw (52); sister, Barb Cress (51); stepbrother, Mark McCormick; stepbrother, Robbie Griffin; stepsister, Tracy Griffin.

May he rest in peace and fly with the eagles.

Obit published in the Kitsap Sun on Sept. 19, 2014