Nov. 25, 1926 ~ May 4, 2008-
Courtney W. Backstrom of Vancouver, WA, passed away on May 4, 2008 at the age of 81. He was born in Kulm, ND on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25, 1926 to Victor and Tina Backstrom.
Courtney served with the U.S. Air Force during the Korean conflict as a crew chief on fighter jets.
He retired from the Vancouver Fire Department in 1976.
Courtney bravely battled a multitude of health issues for some time, always keeping his sense of humor-that twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face.
He took great pride in his family and their accomplishments. They came first with him. He was truly the light in our lives. With him in a room, everything seemed brighter. Anyone who met him always remembered him. He knew no strangers.
His love of sports was legendary, reading the sports section every morning right to the last day and a dedicated spectator at his children's and grandchildren's sporting events.
Courtney was an avid fisherman who could be depended on to catch the 1st, the most and often the biggest fish.
He enjoyed traveling, visiting Canada, Mexico and many areas of the U.S. including Alaska and Hawaii.
Courtney is survived by his wife, Louise, married 59 years, 8 months and 1 day; daughter, Lori Blocker of Portland, OR; sons, Bruce Backstrom of Portland, OR, Guy (Becky) Backstrom of Sammamish, WA; grandchildren, Adam Elliott of Portland, OR, Hayley (Tyler) Drimmel of Honolulu, HI, Reid and Keiley Backstrom of Sammamish, WA; brothers, Melvin Beckstrom of Vancouver, WA, Willard Backstrom of Vancouver, WA; sisters, Grace Bradford of Vancouver, WA and Dorene Rightenour of Vancouver, WA.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Victor and Tina Backstom; sisters, Esther Scoggin and Lucile Bjerke; and granddaughter, Brianne Blocker.
There will be a private committal with military honors at Willamette National Cemetery.
Memorial service to be at Hamilton-Mylan Funeral Home, 302 W. 11th St., Vancouver, WA, Sat., May 10, 2008 at 1:30 p.m.
Remembrances to Children's Hospital and Regional Center, PO Box 5371, Seattle, WA 98105.
Published in The Columbian on May 8, 2008