Gary Roger Letsinger, 85, former resident of Kent, Wash., passed away Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021, at his niece’s home in Kelso, Wash.
Gary was born May 12, 1936, in Longview, Wash., to Harold and Elsie Letsinger. Gary attended local schools, and graduated from Kelso High School in 1954. He continued his education at UW, earning his degree in Aeronautical Engineering. This led to his career as an engineer with Boeing’s Military Division, where he retired in 1995.
Gary was a hard working, valued employee and coworker. He enjoyed lunching with his coworkers, and made many friends when out on his nearly every day lunches at Tuscany at Des Moines Creek in Des Moines, Wash.
Gary was an interesting man with many different hobbies. He had a dry sense of humor, paid close attention to detail in everything he did, and was an excellent mentor if a person was willing to learn. He got his license to fly gliders in 1968, and bought one not long after becoming ‘legal’ to fly. He bought a sailboat, which he named ‘SeaJay,’ after his sister, Carol Jean, and spent many hours out on the water.
He was great with wood, and created lots of beautiful things, including hardwood clocks and control line model airplanes that he built and flew himself. He was a member of the Academy of Model Aeronautics and NW Skyraiders.
Gary was preceded in death by his sister, Carol Hagdahl; and great-niece, Stefany Hagdahl.
He is survived by his brother-in-law, Ken Hagdahl of Kelso; niece, Kerry (Randy) Hall of Kelso; and nephew, Bret (Barb) Hagdahl, also of Kelso.
A celebration of Gary’s life will begin at 10 am Friday, December 17, at Dahl- McVicker Funeral Home in Kelso, with interment to follow the service at Cowlitz View Memorial Gardens. A gathering will be announced in January 2022 at Tuscany at DesMoines Creek.