Doris Jean Strong
December 23, 1927 – March 14, 2020
Doris Jean (Coonrod) Strong, age 92, died peacefully in her daughter’s home Saturday afternoon March 14, 2020 after a sudden illness leading to congestive heart failure. * Her daughter Deb, son-in-law Myke and beloved dog Abby were byher side while listening to her all-time favorite, Andy Williams.
Doris is preceded in death by her husband Robert Alan (Bob) Strong; parents Edgar and Beatrice Coonrod; Children Jan Arnett, Bob M. Strong, Barb Curtiss; Son-in-law Danny Arnett; siblings Sherry Hamilton, Bev Wicker; Great Grandchildren Baby Arnett and Baby Aaron Dykstra
Doris (Geeg,GG,Gigi) was loved by and will be greatly missed by those that she leaves behind: Daughter Deb (Myke) Murphy of MN and Son-in-law Keith Curtiss of WA Grandchildren: Chad (Rachel) Humphrey of TX; Heidi (Chad) Gray of CA; Jason (Candace) Strong, Ryan (Dacia) Strong, Jonathan Strong all of WA; Patti (Adam) Dykstra of WI; Kristi (Anthony Brown) Murphy of MN;Kelli Arnett of AR Great Grandchildren: Gage Humphrey, Dillon & Makenna Gray, Ryse & Noel Strong, Connor & Brayden Strong, Nora Dykstra, Saralunn & Nathan Peacock and Dannyel Peglar And many nieces, nephews and friends around the country.
Doris was born in Seattle, WA December 23, 1927 to Edgar and Beatrice (McCleary) Coonrod. After graduation from West Seattle High School in 1945, she became a Camp Fire leader where she metBob through one of her Camp Fire girls. In 1948, they were married in West Seattle and started their family. In 1955, with 3 young kids, Sears transferred Bob to Oak Harbor, WA where they completed and raised their family of 4. Bob later began his careerwith the Navy Resale System (NRS) at the Navy base on Whidbey Island, WA. They lived in Oak Harbor for 15 Years. Doris and Bob spent the next 23 years with the NRS in Naples, Italy; Washington DC; and Mare Island (Benicia), CA before retiring in Auburn, WAin 1993.
While raising their kids, Doris and Bob made many lifelong friends, enjoyed sledding, dancing, playing cards, Sunday drives on the island, hosting Christmas parties, Sunday dinners, visitingfamily in Seattle, family vacations, camping and many other activities.
In Oak Harbor Doris continued as a Camp Fire Leader and Organizer for many years. She also worked as a bookkeeper for the Oak Harbor Pharmacy. She belonged to the Women’s Civic Club and wasalso on a bowling league.
While living in Italy, Doris volunteered at the Navy Hospital pharmacy and enjoyed exploring Naples, the rest of Italy and Europe with Bob, Deb and friends.
Once back in the states in 1973, Doris worked once again as a bookkeeper for the local utility company and then a large Drug Store chain in the DC area and finally for Kaiser Steel in Napa,CA. When she retired early, she began a successful career selling Avon in CA and WA until her move to Minnesota, at the age of 89! She was part of their 25+ years club. She also started a sewing business which included making wedding dresses and teachingchildren.
With Bob by her side, they enjoyed a wonderful life together with many miles traveled and many friends made. In retirement, they enjoyed reconnecting with family and friends, making new onesand traveling. They bought their largest home in Auburn as they needed the space for all the visitors that they had! After Bob died in 2011, Doris sold the house and moved into a beautiful new apartment complex just up the hill. In 2016, after losing 3 ofher 4 kids in three years, she then moved to Minnesota to be with Deb and her family. As she did with Bob during their life together, Doris successfully reinvented her life with each move and made many new friends.
Doris loved technology and often said she was born a generation too early. She had a computer, tablet, smart phone, Kindle, Fitbit, Alexa, smart outlets, Bluetooth hearing aids! Incredibleand very unusual for being 92! It all allowed her to remain connected to all the young people in her life and those spread around the country.
Doris was an amazing knitter, seamstress, gardener, cook and artist. She loved dogs and to swim, be outside, travel, play cards and games and spend time with her familyand friends. She loved and did all these things her entire life! She was currently contributing knitting items for the Bundles of Love charity. She also shared a love for her Seattle Seahawks with her 3 grandsons and the rest of Seattle! During their timein CA, after many visits to the Napa Valley and Sonoma wine country, Doris acquired a love for wine which she shared with her daughters.
Doris was not ready to go, she had things she still wanted to do. She was very fortunate to be able to live a COMPLETELY independent life until this winter. Very few are as lucky as she was.And we were all so very lucky to have her for so long. Her family and friends meant the world to her. She would want you all to know that she treasured all her memories with you and loved you all.
For all the loss that she endured, Doris had an amazing sense of resilience, zest for life and sense of humor. She was a loving, devoted wife, caring and loving big sister, a totally amazingMom, Grandma, Great Grandma, Aunt, Great Aunt and a faithful forever friend. May she continue to live deep within our hearts as a constant inspiration to us all.
And I, Deb, thank you all for being there for her until the end. I have lost my lifelong best friend. She was truly one of the biggest blessings in my life. I will miss her dearly.
When circumstances allow, a Celebration of Life will be held for Doris at St. Therese of Woodbury, MN where she lived. After that, we will have a Celebration of Lifein Auburn, WA. Doris’ interment will be at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, WA with her husband, Bob. I will update with those dates as I know them.
*Doris’ illness was not related to the current COVID-19 Pandemic.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Doris’ name are suggested to:
American Heart Assoc https://www2.heart.org/
American Diabetes Assoc https://www.diabetes.org/donate/donate-in-honor
American Cancer Society https://donate3.cancer.org/
Doris Jean Strong
March 18, 2020
For Deb Murphy and all the family of Doris we extend to you our sympathy and love. We got to know Doris and her best friend Abbey here at St. Therese. We shared many happy times together, visiting on the patio, chatting in the bistro, happy hour, playing cards and her 90th birthday. God Bless you Doris and may you rest in peace. Our love and prayers to all the family.