Jan Dabrowski

Jan Dabrowski – 57 years young

11/27/1953 – 6/21/2011


Surviving is: wife Ellen, step-daughter Cassandra, son-in-law Alex and love-able grandson Bennett.

Poland –  Sister Danuta, brother-in-law Andrej, nephew Krzysztof.


Jan’s passion was woodworking. Professionally trained in a woodworking shop in Poland, where he became the Master Craftsman that was desired by many a wood shop in every city he lived.

As a young man learning his woodworking crafts, Jan said the Master craftsman tossed chisels and other tools at his head when he got out of line.  He truly loved working with wood, making furniture and cabinets. Always the perfectionist, he continually believed he could do better with the next handmade piece.


Avid fisherman as an adult as well as a child.  He spoke of his time in his homeland of Poland with his father out on the river in a small boat or on the riverside fishing when they both should have been working or in school.

Jan really loved this time with his father and learned the love of fishing.

This continued as an adult. He worked for the fishing fleet of Poland. While with the fishing fleet, he was able to travel the World.  He relished many places he visited, but the one place he knew where he would thrive was America.  On one of the fishing contracts, the boat stopped in San Fransisco, he knew this place was his future.


1980 he decided to leave his homeland Poland. He packed for his last fishing contact, knowing he would not be able to see his family for many years.

He kissed his mother and father good bye, set sail for America.

The closest port the fishing boat was stopping in was Canada.  He “jumped the boat” in Vancouver Canada, came across the border on his way to San Fransisco and was waylaid in Seattle.  That day was May 18, 1980 the day MT Saint Helens blew. This was his lucky day and ours. He met many new friends and his wife in Seattle.


We met in 1988 at a local Seattle bar Jan frequented.  We both knew the moment we met we were soul mates and we have been together since that day. Within 2 weeks we left Seattle for a cross country adventure. We landed in Savannah Georgia and were there a little over a year, but we both knew Seattle was our home.


We arrived back in Seattle and Jan got back to working on the fishing boats for a year or two.  He didn’t like being away from me or his many friends for such long time periods.

Then his health could not take the extreme weather conditions

He went back to his second passion, woodworking. He worked at a couple of Cabinet shops and one employer was a boat building fabricator.  Once the opportunity came and Jan being the independent person that he was, he started his own business. He loved ever aspect and the time he got to work his own business.

Unfortunately health issues required him to stop working and retire.

Luckily for Jan this meant he could go back to his first passion, fishing.

His most frequented fishing spot was the Puget Sound for Salmon or Halibut.

He did have a couple of rivers in the area that he like to fish. Many knew him by site or at least by his Aussie Hat that he loved to wear. He had many fishing buddies on the river. They all would swap secrets on what lure or color the Salmon were biting on that day or where the best spot was to catch.


Late on Tuesday night 6/21/11, Jan succumbed to his COPD and died in bed asleep.


I feel we all were blessed by him and his love.

He could steel your heart with a simple smile or a few kind words.

He will be truly missed by his family and friends.


The Puget Sound is where his ashes will be spread, so Jan can be once again with the fishes.


3 Responses to “Jan Dabrowski”

  • Carlye Olson says:

    I am so sorry to hear of Jan passing. I have spent many times talking with Ellen about Jan through the years that I feel I know him well. His loss will be felt even though we are many miles apart. My heart goes out to his family and friends.

  • Robin Readel says:

    Over the years of visiting with Ellen via the phone, I felt the enduring love Ellen had for Jan. I loved reading the begining of the love story between Ellen and Jan’s life together. You seemed idealy matched.
    Jan’s life was an incredible adventure, thank you for sharing his story with us.
    My heart felt condolences to Ellen and her family.

  • Paul Von Stubbe says:

    I knew Jan in the early eighties when his accent was pretty thick. We used to like to tell him Polish jokes. I remember a fun deer hunting trip we went on together.. Jan had a great heart and I’m sorry he’s gone.

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