Robert Bruce Olafson

May 7, 1932April 8, 2013

Author and educator Robert Bruce Olafson, 80, died Monday, April 8 at Touchmark Estates in Spokane, Washington.

Bob was born May 7, 1932 to Alf Christian Olafson and Florence Loraine Junge in Dickinson, North Dakota. At age 7, his family moved to Tacoma, where Bob spent most of his youth. From1951 until his discharge in 1953, Bob served his country in the United States Navy. Bob went to Pacific Lutheran University and held a doctorate from the University of Washington.

Bob married Carolyn Sessions Olafson in 1967 and they lived for more than 40 years at Clear Lake near Spokane Washington. He had a long and distinguished career at Eastern Washington University where he served as a professor of English for more than 30 years. He taught and lectured in Mexico, Sweden, Japan and throughout the United States.

He is survived by his wife, Carolyn, stepson Stephen Matthews (Lorie), Brother Dick (Barbara), Niece Lynn, Nephew Mark and grandsons Brandon, Winston, Trevor and their wives.

Bob was known for his impish behavior, irrepressibly dry humor, and service to the community, as a professor, scoutmaster and as a volunteer leader at his church. He leaves a legacy of 2 novels, countless published papers, and hundreds of students. He is remembered as a beloved, friend, husband, father and grandfather.

A viewing for Bob will be held at 10:00 A.M. on Monday, April 15, 2103 at the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, West Stake Center, 10405 W. Melville Road, Cheney with the funeral service to follow at 11:00 A.M. Burial Dedicatory Services will be at the Washington State Veteran's Cemetery, Medical Lake with Military Honors.


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Robert Bruce Olafson

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Donna Potter Phillips

April 25, 2013

Carolyn, I was so sorry read the obits and learn of Bob's passing and your loss. I remember Bob on that day you hosted the Family History Center picnic..... all smiles and such a fun guy. So many will miss him and that smile. Would treat you to lunch anytime; please call me! Donna (Geiger Heights Ward)

April 15, 2013

I am glad to have known Dr. Olafson

Jean DeGeare

April 15, 2013

I am sure Bob will be missed by many relatives and friends. He was a very special person.

McFarland Family

April 15, 2013

We love Grandpa O. His family is in our thoughts and prayers!

McFarland Family

April 15, 2013

We love Grandpa O. His family is in our thoughts and prayers.

April 14, 2013

The Washington State Veterans Cemetery extend our deepest sympathies to the family of Robert B. Olafson for your loss, to honor his service to our country and our patriotic hero.

Judy Samples

April 14, 2013

Dana Parker sent me a copy of this site. Carolyn, I am so sorry for our loss and for you families' loss, too. My thouhts are with you.


April 12, 2013

I am sorry to hear of the passing of Robert he will be greatly missed. May you keep fond memories of him always. May the God of peace and comfort guide you in the days ahead.Psalms 68:19.