James W. Washburn

James W. (Jim) Washburn

Dad-ArmyJim was born to James O. and Susie M. (Martin) Washburn on September 17th 1930 at Providence Hospital in Seattle.  He passed from this world to his heavenly home on Aug. 6th 2013 in Swedish Hospital in Seattle. He was the oldest of three, grew up in the Lakeridge neighborhood of Seattle and graduated in 1948 from Renton High School.  Jim served in the Army during the Korean War, being discharged in 1954 with the rank of Corporal.  He worked a number of different jobs including septic cleaning, gas station entrepreneur, an upholsterer for his dad at Washburn’s Upholstery in Seattle for a time before eventually going to work as a machinist for Boeing. He was also a laundry truck delivery driver in the middle of his Boeing career. He retired from the mock-up department at Boeing in 1993.


Jim enjoyed many activities over the years; fishing, water skiing on Lake Washington, camping, traveling, visiting classic car museums, wood working, dining out, trivia & word games, channel surfing in the recliner and an occasional card game. On his camping adventures, some of his more frequented stops included Lopez Island, LaPush, Sun Lakes, Banks Lake, Baker Lake, Pot Holes, Westport, Shine Beach and Copalis Beach. Many memories were made here with friends and family, as well as times of solitude. His family remembers many times of sharing and enjoying a meal of fresh crab, clams or fish, after a time of first catching the little rascals. With his love of seafood, was a love for many foods, but one thing is true, he was the popcorn popping master! 


Jim was known to all as being a very kind man with a quiet demeanor.  In 1996, he made a confession of faith, acceptingDad-Cruise Jesus as Lord, and then was water baptized in the faith in 1997. His life took on deeper meaning and attended church at Brinnon Community Church regularly, for a few years.  Jim first married Ada Gustafson in 1950. To this union was born Bill, Jackie and Steve. Next he married Darlene (nee Warren) Grosso on April 13th 1962. She brought with her Gary, Cheryl and Keith to the family, and Jim and Darlene then had Mike and Kelly. At times it was quite a house full, and definitely never a dull moment. As the years rolled by and the ‘nest’ emptied, Jim and Darlene were able to spend more time together, enriching their love for each other. He faithfully spent the last few years tending to his wife’s declining health.


If moving was a sport, Jim Washburn would have been a star athlete. He lived in several places in Seattle, several in Renton, Kent, Brinnon, Issaquah, Maple Valley, Ft. Lewis, Korea, California, Arizona, and on the road. In the Maplewood Heights neighborhood in Renton alone, he lived in three houses and one mobile home! His last home was in Seattle overlooking Lake Union.


Jim lost his battle with cancer and the harsh side effects of treatment were too much for his body to take. He will be dearly missed by his family and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents James Orville “Poppy” and Susie Mae Washburn. He is survived by; sister  Betty J. (Ted) McJunkin, brother Jack O. (Jeanette) Washburn, wife Darlene L. Washburn of Seattle and former wife Ada Rosa of Renton. Eight children; son William J. (Nita) Washburn of Renton,  daughter  Jackie L. (Phillip) Halleen of Pheonix, AZ,  son Stephen P. (Mandy) Washburn of Seattle, son Gary G. (Tammy) Grosso of Renton, daughter Cheryl D. Smith of Stanwood, son Keith A. (Andressa) Grosso of Renton, son Michael J. (Leigh) Washburn of Carnation and daughter Kelly J. Ubeda of Issaquah. Eighteen grandchildren; Wes, John, Casey, Cassie, Tiffany, Mikeala, Nicole, Courtney, Samantha K., Tiani, Garrett, Joshua, Samantha W., Konnor, Elijah, Alexa, Daniela and Gabriela. Eight great grandchildren; Rocko, Reese, Riley, Zane, Macy, Logan, Kaitlyn and Jason Jr.


Dad-BrinnonA 30 minute graveside service with ‘Military Funeral Honors’ will first be held at Tahoma National Cemetery 18600 Southeast 240th Street  in Kent at 12:30pm on Monday, August 19th, 2013. Amemorial service celebrating and honoring Jim Washburn’s life will be held at 2pm on Monday, August 19th, 2013 at Cornerstone United Methodist Church 20730 SE 272nd St in Covington (Kent). 425-432-1792.

4 Responses to “James W. Washburn”

  • Betty McJunkin says:

    Jim was a dear
    “big” brother to me and I loved him very much. He and I used to fight like cats and dogs when we were kids, but as we both grew older and especially when we were both Christians, we became much closer and the bond was even stronger since we were a sister and brother in our Lord Jesus Christ. I will miss him but I am looking forward to a great reunion in the near future! When he was near death, I asked him if he knew that Jesus was with him and he whispered, “No doubt about it!” That brings me such peace. I thank God for Jim.

  • Jack O Washburn says:

    I will miss my “big” brother Jim very much. We did not get to see or talk to each other as much as we should have, but we always had a tremendous love for each other as “lil bro and big bro” The thing that I remember about Jim was his kindness, and faithfulness to his wife Darlene, never complaining, always trying to make the best of the situation. A good Man, who loved the Lord, we will all miss him dearly. Rest in peace with Jesus my “big bro”. I shall see you again….

  • Dutch Stultz says:

    Jim had to have a big heart, with a lot of Love, to have that many children. My prayers go out to all of you during this very difficult time.

    RIP JIM.

  • Jean and Pat Ruklic (2nd cousins) says:

    Remembering the days of our childhood with Betty while living in Breynmar. Please contact Jean (Sbaraglia) 805-687-8066 or Pat(Hargrove). Our sincerest sympathies to the family for your loss. We love Jim and think of the wonderful days of our youth. With love, Jean and Pat Ruklic.

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