OBITUARY

Paul Peter George

March 28, 1930August 6, 2018
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Paul Peter George age 88 passed away August 6, 2018 at Virginia Mason Memorial Hospital, Paul was born on March 28, 1930 in Glendive Montana to Peter George his Greek immigrant father, and Helen (Seeberger) George, the fourth of 12 children of Nicholas and Katherine Seeberger who homesteaded near Glen Ullin, ND in 1902. The family moved to Tacoma in 1941 where he attended Visitation Catholic School and graduated from Bellarmine High School. Paul was an outstanding athlete. In 1947 as quarterback, Paul led the Bellarmine football team to their first Tacoma City League Football championship. Attending St. Martin's College on a football scholarship, Paul graduated with a degree in journalism and English in the spring of 1952 and was drafted that summer into the army, He proudly completed two years of Korean War theatre military service, including 14 months in Okinawa.

In 1956, Paul married Janet Marie Poirier the love of his life at St. Leo's Church in Tacoma. They moved to Moses Lake where Paul was a reporter for the Columbia Basin Daily Herald. Moving to Yakima in 1957, he joined the staff of the Yakima Herald, working there for fourteen years, the last eight as the sports editor. His bi-weekly column, "George's Journal" was enjoyed by many sports fans.

In 1971, Paul was hired by the Yakima Valley Turf Club, Inc. as general manager of Yakima Meadows, a position held for 13 years. Following a stint as Marketing Director for Portland Meadows, in 1985 he became the Director of Communications for United Tote, Inc., a Billings Montana firm supplying computerized wagering systems to the pari-mutual industry. Retiring in 1996 Paul moved back to Yakima becoming simulcast director for Yakima Meadows, then owned and operated by the Central Washington Fair Association.

Elected to the Yakima City Council in 2001, Paul served as deputy mayor from 2002-03, then as mayor in 2004-05, where he led the effort to fund and staff the Sports Commission, seeing it launch the first Hot Shots basketball tournament. He played a pivotal role in securing state funding to rebuild Yakima's downtown and restore the Historic Front Street District. Paul enjoyed his time on the Council as a progressive thinker working tirelessly for the community that he dearly loved.

Paul was appointed to the Washington State Horse Racing Commission by Governor Gregoire in 2006, and was reappointed for additional term by Governor Jay Inslee. He retired from the Commission in 2016. Working on many civic projects, he was on the committee that established the Visitors and Convention Bureau, becoming chairman of the board of directors, and the advisory board that broke ground on the Convention Center. Paul served three years as president of the Monday Morning Quarterbacks Club, two years as president of the Yakima Newspaper Guild, as director of the RepubCo Credit Union and was twice elected chair of the Yakima County Democratic Committee.

Paul and Janet raised three children; Mark, Paulette and Kathleen. He dearly loved his entire extended family, enjoying family outings and events. His friendly welcoming nature and wit was infectious to all he encountered. Meeting Paul made you an instant friend!

Paul is preceded in death by his loving wife Janet, his parents Peter and Helen, siblings William George, James George and Katherine Dupille. He is survived by son Mark and wife Jan George of Yakima, daughters Paulette (George) Marley of Lynnwood and Kathleen (Rick) Speedy of Junction City, OR, grandsons Stefan George and Brandon George of Seattle and Brett Speedy of Junction City, OR. Numerous nieces and nephews will also miss Uncle Paul.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Yakima on Monday, August 13, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. with a reception immediately following in the Parish Hall. A private inurnment at Calvary Cemetery will be take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please send memorials to Cottage in the Meadow, the Harman Center, or a charity of your choice.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may shared at www.keithandkeith.com.

  • FAMILY

  • Paul is preceded in death by his loving wife Janet, his parents Peter and Helen, siblings William George, James George and Katherine Dupille.

    He is survived by son Mark and wife Jan George of Yakima, daughters Paulette (George) Marley of Lynnwood and Kathleen (Rick) Speedy of Junction City, OR, grandsons Stefan George and Brandon George of Seattle and Brett Speedy of Junction City, OR. Numerous nieces and nephews will also miss Uncle Paul.
  • PALLBEARERS

  • Stefan George, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Brandon George, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Brett Speedy, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Michael Dupille, Honourary Bearer
  • George Marley, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Chris George, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Nick George, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Ken Evans, Honorary Pallbearer
  • DONATIONS

  • In lieu of flowers, please send memorials to Cottage in the Meadow, the Harman Center, or a charity of your choice.

Services

PREVIOUS SERVICES:

  • Mass of Christian Burial Monday, August 13, 2018

OTHER SERVICES:

  • Private Inurnment
REMEMBERING

Paul Peter George

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Ron DeHart

August 20, 2018

Paul George was a straight shooter and a fair and honest man. He hired me as a weekend sports reporter — my first journalism job — in late 1963 while I was attending classes at Yakima Valley College. He encouraged and coached me for some time, as my career moved on into the mid 1960s during my Univ. Of Wash/Seattle P-I days. He was a commited humanitarian, and cared a great deal about equal rights and justice for all. I loved his jokes and all his horse stories, which were well known both in the newsroom and throughout the Herald’s readership area in the Yakima Valley.

Susan Soto Palmer

August 15, 2018

Dear Paul:

I was not able to attend your services on Monday, but you, your family, friends and loved ones are in my heart. It was a privilege to meet you and work with you throughout my years here. It was a pleasure to strategize with you during your 2014 campaign and listen to many great words of wisdom on improving our community and the work that needed to be continued. You were a great friend, mentor and supporter. Your love for our community was always so strong, even though we were not able to see each other often this last year. Our last talk in July was all about strategizing for this year's election and your recommendations in moving forward. I will miss you very much! Rest in peace, power and love, Paul!

Kristine Dupille

August 13, 2018

I'm so sorry that I can't be with you on Monday. Uncle Paul welcomed me into the family with a bright smile, big hug & open heart. He never failed to put a smile on my face. My heart hurts but I know that he's kicking it with Kay, Jim & Bill. I send you all my love & healing thoughts.

FROM THE FAMILY
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