Igor Michael Gladstone Sr.

dad10Igor Michael Gladstone Sr. died of natural causes at age 87 on Feb. 6th, in his home in Woodinville, WA, surrounded by his loving family.

Igor was born on the 1st of December, 1928 in Algiers to Galena Voinov, an Imperial Russian noblewoman and Michael Alexander Glazachev, a distinguished naval engineering officer, both of whom had fled Sevastopol during the Russian Revolution. He was raised in colonial French North Africa, knife-fighting in the streets and studying in French schools. Igor spoke Russian at home and Arabic in the community. Igor received his Baccalaureate degree in 1947.

Igor immigrated to Seattle the same year and became a United States citizen in 1952. His focus and determination allowed him to study full time while also working at the Olympic Hotel as a waiter to help support his family.  Igor received his Master’s degree in Educational Statistics from the University of Washington, and then married Lydia Homenco, the love of his life, on July 18, 1954 at the St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral on Capitol Hill.

During his 40-year career with the Seattle School District, Igor specialized in foreign languages. He taught French, Russian, Spanish, and German to thousands of students at Roosevelt High School and Nathan Hale High School. Igor was always proud of his family’s Russian heritage and especially enjoyed teaching Russian literature. Igor advanced to the position of Department Head of Foreign Languages, and then, before his retirement, to District Language Specialist to the Superintendent.

Igor’s interests and activities widely ranged, reflecting his inextinguishable energy and drive. He wrote many scholarly papers and lectured across Igor Moscow 1961the country and abroad.  Igor published a two-volume memoir, The Algerian Odyssey and The American Odyssey.  Igor designed and built several houses, including two in Woodinville, Washington and one in Roseburg, Oregon.  His farm in Woodinville consistently pulls a profit from beef, and his land in Roseburg grows timber. Igor belonged to the Writers’ Group in Roseburg, Oregon, as he relished being a part of the community.  Many mornings throughout his life, Igor was up well before dawn, making fresh coffee and his famous Algerian breakfasts for the family as he prepared for the rigorous day of teaching, building, or chopping wood. In Igor’s later years, he crafted fine wine from the grapes he and Lydia grew. Igor enjoyed his life from their wisteria covered veranda as he made plans for improving everyone’s lives. Visits from family and friends were celebratory, joyous occasions because Igor loved us all. He worked tirelessly to show us just how much he cared. Until the very end, he could never be contained.


Igor is survived by Lydia Gladstone, his wife of 62 years; children Igor Jr., Sylvia, Peggy, and Gaylyn; grandchildren Anna, Laura, Alexandra, Arist, Cole, and Stefanie; nieces Dorothy, Valerie, and Lisa, and nephew Greg.   Igor is preceded in death by his mother Galina Voinov and his father Michael Glazachev, sister Alichka (Sotnik), brothers Michael and Valentin, and nephew Robert Sotnik. A Celebration of Life is planned at his home in May. Please write your remembrances of Igor here.

Thank you for making his life rich with love and laughter.


10 Responses to “Igor Michael Gladstone Sr.”

  • Peggy says:

    Daddy, thank you for teaching us so many life lessons. The love I have for my life is a reflection of the love you had for us, your family, and the love you had for our country. See you in Heaven!

  • Lorellen Nausner says:

    Dear Family of Igor Gladstone, Sr. :

    My condolences and sympathy at your loss.

    “Monsieur Gladstone,” as I knew him in the mid-1970’s, was my French teacher at Nathan Hale High School. He was the first person I met, who knew more than two languages, and knew them well. He insisted on excellence and attention to proper language use. Under his guidance my French skills developed beyond mere childish rote responses into fluency, capable of expressing more complex ideas at an adult level.

    Influenced by him, as a role model and teacher, I finished my BA degree in International Relations just one class short of a minor in French. I spent my junior year in Vienna, Austria, without having previously studied German. However, my language learning skills enabled me to become bilingual, as an adult, living in Vienna for more than 12 years. With my husband, I raised two bilingual, multicultural children, proud of their diverse heritage (US, Austrian, Swedish, Russian, Romanian).

    Returning to Seattle, I completed my Masters in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA-TESOL) at the University of Washington. I have taught English with immigrant and refugee students through North Seattle Community College for almost 15 years.

    I owe a broader worldview and confidence with cross-cultural communication to my education that was formed by Igor Gladstone. His influence continues to benefit my students from around the world – in each class I teach. It is an honor to reflect on how his life shaped me. Thank you for sharing him with so many students over the years. The impact of his life continues into the future.


    Lorellen (Palmer) Nausner

    Nathan Hale High School graduate
    Juris Doctor, Loyola University of Chicago
    MA-TESOL, University of Washington
    Pastor, Peace Church Seattle


  • Patti Robertson says:

    Sylvia and family, I am so sorry that you have lost a beloved father. Learning about him and his life his death is also a loss to the world. What an exciting, interesting and fulfilling life he must have lived! I hope you and your family can find comfort that not only did he enrich your lives but those of his communities.
    Hugs and prayers,

  • Geoff Ingle says:

    I had Mr. Gladstone for beginning Russian at Roosevelt High School in 1961-62. I sank without a trace, though it was not Mr. G’s fault. He was a fine teacher; I was a mediocre student. He took the time to advise me about Russian literature, about which translations embrace, which to avoid. Through him I developed an ongoing interest in Russian history and poetry, as well as literature. Though our contact was brief, his influence has been life-long. I thank him for that, and thank his family for sharing him with us.

  • Lynn (Alexander) Smith says:

    I was privileged to have Mr. Gladstone for three years of Russian Language study at Roosevelt High School in l961-1963. My father and grandparents were born in Russia and fled the country during the Russian Revolution and I have always been very proud of this side of my heritage. I was not aware of the vastness of his life experience and am certainly humbled and awed by how far reaching and impactful it was. Over the years, even though there had been no further contact with him, I found myself remembering and mentioning him with fondness to friends and family. I feel only gratitude for the brief time he shared part of himself in the classroom with his love for the Russian culture and language. He also encouraged me to become a part of the Russian Folk Dancing group and use my singing talent to sing Russian songs that were performed at Roosevelt and other High Schools. He will always have a special place in my heart and memory.

  • Judy (Tidwell) Bethea says:

    Mr. Gladstone was my second year Spanish teacher at Roosevelt High School in 1957. I wasn’t doing well and he told me I might not pass the class. I challenged myself to translate the entire book “Anaconda” that we were using in class to show him I was worthy of a passing grade (which he gave me). My enduring memory of him is the flowered brocade vests he wore to class.

    May his memory be eternal!

  • Lisa Glazatcheff (Brodie) says:

    My wonderful Uncle Igor left every family member with 2 books and inscribed with “Know your roots”, Igor. Every time I open it, it brings back many memories of listening to Aunt Alichka tell the family stories that Uncle Igor vividly captured and forever memorialized in these books.
    He was an amazing man with an amazing family who loved and lived life to the fullest.

    Igor is now able to reminisce with MeMe, Pepe, Alichka, Victor and Val.

    You are not gone, you are now home with GOD.

  • Cristina Zahajko says:

    Dear Gladstone family:

    Our deepest condolences for the death of this unique man.

    We are reading The Algerian Odyssey which we got through Amazon.com…is there a way of buying the 2nd part The American Odyssey?

    Your suggestion will be greatly appreciated.


    C. Zahajko

  • Carol Folsom says:

    So many wonderful memories come to me, as I remember such nice times with you, Lydia and Igor, and your lovely family. I first became acquainted with Igor when he and my hubby, Lee, were teaching at Roosevelt High. We developed such a nice friendship.
    Then when my youngest daughter became interested in your horse, Ginger, we made frequent visits to your home. Becky rode her, with Sylvia’s instruction, while I became acquainted with you. I experienced the wonderful friendship I enjoyed with you two. Igor always treated me as if I were family. When the time came for Ginger to move to our home,also in Woodinville, Igor, along with Becky and Sylvia (I believe) walked her all the way, which was quite a distance.
    I treasure the many memories I have. A friendship that lasted a long time. My thoughts are with you at this time.

  • Michaline Olijnyk (Mickey) says:

    So very sorry Lydia that you have lost your husband. I hope, you are doing well during these trying times with Covid.
    Do you remember me from SMVA in Sloatsburg? I’d love to catch up. Sisters are trying to sell the Villa. They have closed the school in 1978(?). They are dealing with huge expenses. We had a reunion in 2003 and I was there from Tempe, Arizona.
    God Bless you Love, Mickey

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