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John M. Carlson ’53

John spent much of his childhood on his parents’ thoroughbred horse-breeding farm on the Machias River in Snohomish, Washington. After graduating from Everett High School, he attended Reed, later receiving his degree from Western Washington University. He volunteered in the Army and worked on Air Force communications in the mid-’50s. John worked for both DuBois Chemicals and the Boeing Company before changing paths and pursuing a career as a real estate agent in the Seattle area.

His faith was important to him, and John was active in his church; loved people, sailing, and seagulls; and was well known for big hugs and a great sense of humor. He worked hard to be whatever people needed whenever they needed it. He helped promote the Paul Harris Society, committed to the eradication of polio around the world, and with his wife, Jan, ministered to scores of young people. After 30 years in Olympia, the couple moved to Gig Harbor to be nearer to family. His wife and his children Merrilee Lyle, Deanna Clark, and Dave Carlson survive him.

Appeared in Reed magazine: December 2016

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