Zena L. Cochran

Zena L. Cochran died peacefully on December 1, 2011 at Evergreen Hospital in Kirkland, WA. She was predeceased by her husband, Doyce E. Cochran, in 2000. Her brother Jim died in 1984. Zena is survived by her sister, Olympe “Babe” Toman, numerous nieces and nephews, and her goddaughter, Barbara Silverman.

Zena was born on July 24, 1915. She lived all her life in Washington State except for 28 years in Alaska. She graduated with honors from Renton High School in 1933 and from Metropolitan Business College of Seattle in 1934. She loved sports, especially tennis and skiing.

Zena dearly loved Alaska, and had many memorable experiences there. While working in Seattle in 1944, she was recruited as a civilian employee under the umbrella of the U.S. Air Force and assigned to Alaskan Air Command near Anchorage. After the war she moved to Anchorage. Shortly thereafter she was asked to join a small team of doctors and nurses to document a nutrition survey of Eskimo villages above the Arctic Circle. The survey was sponsored by the Territorial Department of Health and the New York Museum of Natural History. It was productive as it helped determine the cause of new medical problems amongst the Natives. On a trip to Seattle in November 1947 Zena was one of 17 survivors (9 were killed) in the first fatal airplane crash at the Seattle-Tacoma airport. In 1956, she met and married her beloved husband. They both survived the disastrous earthquake of 1964 which devastated so much of south-central Alaska.

In 1972 Doyce retired and they moved to Renton, WA to be close to Zena’s mother. Zena was an active member of the Renton High Old Timers Association and the Rose Turner Guild of Valley Medical Center.

Private interment next to her husband will be at Tahoma National Cemetery. A celebration of life to be held at Emerald Heights on Tuesday, December 13, 2011 at 10:00 am. 10901 176th Circle NE Redmond, WA 98052, 425-556-8100.

One Response to “Zena L. Cochran”

  • Ingrid Fuhriman says:

    Zena you are a beautiful lady. I was thinking of you at the Christmas Party the FBI former agents had the other day. Maybe you were there with us in spirit as you passed to the other side just before that event you attended for so many years. Always classy. Always warm and outgoing. Enjoy your eternal reward which no doubt will be great!

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