Allan Frederick Rathbun

photp of Allan Frederick Rathbun

Allan Frederick Rathbun

Allan Frederick Rathbun died after a suffering a subdural hematoma from a fall on June 24, 2017 in Seattle, WA.  He is survived by Laurie, nee Tunnell, his wife of 48 years, daughter Alison, brother Mark Rowley and sister Doris Cooley, nephew Bobbie Cooley, nieces Vanessa Walker and Heidi Shepherd.  Preceded in death by sisters Helen Rowley, and Margaret French Bradshaw.

He was born July 4, 1938 and grew up on Vancouver, Washington.  As a young adult, he worked for the Forest Service cutting down trees, and at Alcoa Aluminum in Vancouver doing manual labor.  He attended Clark College in Vancouver and studied chemical engineering.  After his service with the National Guard where he studied and worked as a radar technician he went to work in Keyport in Dabob Bay doing in-water testing of torpedoes while in a submarine for the Navy.  Eventually he went to work for Boeing and one of his assignments was with the Minute Man site in Minot North Dakota.  From there he was a test engineer at John Fluke.  He studied and

photo of Allan at work

Allan at Work

received a BS in electrical engineering with a minor in computer science at the U of W in 1971.  He returned to Boeing working for Facilities and then the commercial airplane division and the Boeing 777 airplane doing avionics.  Taking advantage of Boeings support for education he studied and received an MBA from City College in 1991.  He retired from Boeing when the 777 was launched in 1995.   In retirement, he worked briefly for CompUSA.

He loved the out of doors, went camping and backpacking.  Planned and accomplished a 50-mile hike on Cascade Crest Trail as well as a hike over Anderson Pass in the Olympics.

He was a lifelong HO gauge model railroader and a member of the 4th division Pacific NW Region HO Modular group.  He also participated in the Trail and Rails program with Amtrak.

Allan pursued woodworking.  He completed our home from the frame-up.  Did the plumbing, wiring, sheetrock, flooring, and doors and trim, and installed the kitchen and bathrooms.

He repaired our cars, and rebuild engines.

He had a great sense of humor.  He loved “shaggy dog stories” remembering every detail, enjoyed puns quoting them at every opportunity, and usually had a joke to tell, fitting it into many conversations.  He was an avid reader, trivia junkie and loved explaining how things worked.

His memorial service will be held at Bellevue Presbyterian Church at 1pm on July 29th.  Donations may be made to BelPres memorial fund.

One Response to “Allan Frederick Rathbun”

  • Sterling Ellison says:

    Laurie, I am so sorry to hear that Alan has passed, Kathy just informed me. I hope the love of your family and friends and your cherished memories of Alan will give you the strength and comfort to deal with the loss of your life’s love.

    There was a lot I did not know about Alan. Reading the history you wrote gave me a better understanding of Alan. It also gave me a better appreciation of my uncle and the great examples his life set for others. I will, as I have think of him often.

    Sterling (Frank) Ellison
    (Son of his eldest sister–Margaret)

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