Lenora Hurlburt


image of Lenora Hurlburt

Lenora Hurlburt

Lenora was born in Auburn WA, the fourth of five children born to Leo Heyl and Eleanor Plaspohl. She graduated from Auburn High School in 1945 and spent some time working in a local ammunition manufacturing plant during WWII. She met Paul Hurlburt, her future husband, at the Spanish Castle Ballroom in Des Moines WA. They married one year later, July 3, 1948, and moved to Denver CO where their first two children were born before returning to Washington and settling into their North Seattle Home where they lived together for 65 years.

image of Lenora and Paul

Lenora and Paul

Lenora is preceded in death by her husband Paul, her parents, her brother Ed Heyl, and her sisters; Kay Kezele, Helen Henricksen and Jean Sample. She is survived by her son Ken Hurlburt, and her two daughters: Teresa George and Diane Maurer. She is a grandmother to eight: Jeff George, Dennis George, Gary George, Marie Wilson, Brad Hurlburt, Robert Hurlburt, Julie Mauer and Kyle Maurer. She also has six great grandchildren: Bayley George, Taylor George, Olivia George, Kaetlyn Wilson, McKenna Wilson, Brandon Wilson and Bret George.

A mass of Christian burial will be held from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM on December 17th  at Christ the King Catholic Church, 11701 Dayton Ave, with a reception following. She will be interned at Holyrood Cemetery in Shoreline WA.


Our home on Evanston Ave N consisted of three bedrooms and one bathroom, grouped together, the kitchen and dining area, and in the center was the main living room with a freestanding oil stove. The oil stove added character to our living space. If there was too much oil the flames would be too big and make rumbling noises. Too my young ears, it sounded like the roar of a bear and would send me clinging to my mother’s side. Early in the morning, or after bath time, three young kids would make pirouettes in front of the oil stove warming one side at a time. Paul and Lenora’s home improvement projects added baseboard heat and a bonus room with a second bathroom.

The property had a double lot which offered great opportunities for kickball and croquet with the kids in the neighborhood. Rope swings and tree houses added to the fun. On occasion Paul would start a burn pile with yard debris and leftover wood from a remodel project. This would bring the neighborhood kids around to roast hot dogs and marshmallows for smores. Soon their parents would gather to pitch horseshoes and drink beer. Years later, there would be cars parked on the lot with Ken and his friends working together to fix this and that.

Lenora was an industrious person who loved being a mother and grandmother. She never tired of making things from baking and cooking, to sewing, knitting, and quilting. A favorite childhood memory is of her baking bread. Our anticipation of a warm slice of fresh baked bread with butter melting on top, made us quite pesty with our question ‘is it done yet’. In addition to preparing meals, baking bread and other treats, Lenora canned green beans, peaches, cherries, applesauce and preserves of strawberry and blackberry jam. She loved a good hobby, there was: paint by number canvases, sewing of flamingo dancing dresses, knitting sweaters-hats-scarfs, latch hook rugs, embroidery, and of course quilting. She was also involved in church and school activities as well as Camp Fire Girls and Boy Scouts.

There was always bowling. Lenora bowled in leagues and tournaments for 50 years! In her later years she would travel to tournaments in Reno NV. She also liked to swim and would take the family to a small beach at Haller Lake, near our house, to swim and play in the water. Sometimes we would have a picnic dinner sitting by the beach. Bitter Lake was also close to our house which was the home of Playland, an amusement park, complete with roller coaster. We could hear people screaming as they rode the roller coaster. Ken liked to tease me that someone just fell off, I never did ride that thing.

Family trips usually involved camping, our favorite places included Lake Chelan and the Gray’s Harbor area for clam digging and playing in the surf. On occasion we took longer road trips to Denver CO to visit the Hurlburt family. One such trip occurred in June of 1962 in the family car, 1948 Buick convertible. Our first day on the road the rear axle broke while driving through mountain pass in Eastern Washington. This resulted in a miserable wait by the side of the road while Paul and Ken rode into the nearest town to fetch a tow truck. Followed by a long boring wait in a hot dusty town. We got underway and made it to Idaho before the car overheated and we spent another boring day in a hot dusty town while the radiator was replaced. While we were there, Lenora made a new friend who was on her way to Denver for the rodeo and needed a ride. Now there was six of us in that hot sweaty car, this was before air conditioning was common in cars. We made it to Wyoming (without further car trouble) and spent the night in a motel. The next morning the cabin door would not open, and Paul had to remove the hinge pins just to open the door. We made it into Denver and dropped off Lenora’s rodeo friend before arriving at our Grandparent’s home. After spending a week in Colorado visiting with family, we started home. We traveled through several windstorms and by the time we reached eastern Washington the convertible top was starting to tear. Paul patched the roof with duct tape, and we were back on the road again. This was the last leg of our journey, so we were driving into the late evening hours. We crossed the Cascade Mountains and it started to rain which caused the roof patch to come undone. The three of us, who were in the back seat, complained bitterly about the tear getting larger and the rain coming in. Paul and Lenora said nothing, we just drove on.

She had an adventuresome spirit, loved to host guests from out of town and being a tour guide. Planning outings to her favorite places near and far; the underground Seattle tour, Space Needle, Olympic Peninsula Rain Forest, or the Washington Coast for salmon fishing. When she and Paul retired, they traveled in their RV to Alaska, New York, and Arizona. Always visiting family and friends along the way. Even a few international trips; to Europe for their grandson’s wedding in Germany, and to Mexico to see the Marion Shrine at Guadalupe.

We are all grateful for her long life well lived and her love and devotion to her family.


Somewhere a journey begins at the end of
The worldly existence we know,
Somewhere a path stretches over the stars
And rivers of memories flow,
Somewhere a silence is heard far away and
The brightness of day fills the night,
Where the trials of life are resolved into peace
When a soul finds it’s way to the light.

2 Responses to “Lenora Hurlburt”

  • Sue Heyl-Worline says:

    I remember the trips to Grayland for clam digging with your family and Grandma & Grandpa Heyl. Along with lots of memories at your house with my sisters and our cousins.

  • Pat Guberlet says:

    I played pinochle with Lenora, Ken and Linda Siegars at Maple Leaf weekly. She was an amazing, competitive player (hurry up and bid..) just lots of fun times were had. Been missing her these last few years- may she rest in God’s arms.

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