Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Feb. 27, 1935 - June 24, 2010
David Drivdahl passed into eternal rest on June 24, 2010, surrounded by his family. David was born Feb. 27, 1935, in Big Timber, Mont., to Emil and Margaret (Lamach) Drivdahl.
He graduated as valedictorian from Sweet Grass County High School in 1954. He continued his education at Montana State University in Bozeman, graduating in 1958 with a bachelor of science in mathematics. Upon receiving his degree, he enrolled in the U.S. Navy Officer Candidate School. He earned his commission as a naval officer on Dec. 5, 1958. During this time, the nuclear power program was expanding.
Adm. Hyman G. Rickover interviewed and accepted him for the position of teacher at the U.S. Naval Nuclear Power School, Mare Island Naval Shipyard in Vallejo, Calif.
Because he enjoyed these four years of teaching, he pursued a Ph.D. in mathematics at the University of Washington. His studies at UW were interrupted by a bicycle accident that required over a year of recovery time. He received a master of science in math from UW in March 1970.
For a family reunion, David wrote in his life summary, "Two years after returning to Seattle, the best thing that ever happened to me occurred. I met Marcella." He married Marcella Anne Smith on Dec. 7, 1968, in Mercer Island, Wash. His children, Kimberly Sue and Aaron David, were born in Seattle.
In 1971, David returned with his family to Big Timber to raise sheep on his grandfather's homestead. He developed farmer's lung caused by breathing hay mold. The family moved to Bremerton, Wash., for two
years to allow his lungs to heal, then, once again returned to Big Timber. After his children graduated from Sweet Grass County High School, David and Marcella relocated to Walla Walla in October 1989.
Service to his church was an important part of David's life. In Big Timber, this included the First Congregational Church and St. Mark's Episcopal. In Walla Walla, he was an active member of St. Paul's Episcopal and also enjoyed volunteering for the Christian Aid Center and Catholic Charities Volunteer Chore Service.
Immediate and extended family were extremely valued by David. He is survived by his wife, Marcella of Walla Walla; his son, Aaron (Lynn) Drivdahl; grandchildren, Peter, Joshua and Emma of Walla Walla; daughter, Kimberly (Brian) Jordan of Tucson, Ariz.; and granddaughters, Jacqlyn and Megan Jordan of Seattle. Survivors also include his sister, Teresa (Hallas) Ridgeway of Chaplin, Conn.; three brothers, Emil (Sharon) Drivdahl of Kent, Wash., John (Sylvia) Drivdahl of Denton, Mont., and Martin (Suzanne) Drivdahl of Helena, Mont.; brother-in-law, Jeff (Gloria) Smith of Bremerton, Wash.; three sisters-in-law, Kathy (Carl) Stritzel of Walla Walla, Sue (Paul) Brueggemeier of Spokane and Debra (Doug) Green of Silverdale, Wash.; and numerous nieces and nephews.
The funeral service will be held Wednesday, June 30 at 2 p.m. at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 323 Catherine St., Walla Walla. The graveside service and burial with military honors will follow at Mountain View Cemetery.
Friends may write memories and sign the online guestbook at www.mountainview-colonialdewitt.com