Gary Helmer Thompson

Nov. 17, 1942 – April 6, 2019

Gary Helmer Thomp-

son, age 76, died Satur-

day, April 6, 2019 at High-

line Medical Center. He

was born in Rugby, ND on

November 17, 1942. Gary

graduated from Rugby HS

in 1960. His work with

the Minute Man Missile

Program took him to mul-

tiple states until he ended

up in Washington where

he finished his career as

an inspector at Boeing.

Anyone who knew Gary

can attest to his love of

the outdoors. He was a

true steward of the land,

whether that be his back-

yard and garden, or

federal forests and hunt-

ing grounds. He was a

master archer and avid

hunter, earning numerous

state championships and

places in the record books

(check out his caribou

mount at Work Sports in

Enumclaw). His ability to

cultivate a garden and

find coveted wild chan-

terelle and morel mush-

rooms was unmatched.

Gary’s Garden had an

open gate policy, a testa-

ment to his generosity,

and servant’s heart.

Not only was Gary an

expert in all things out-

doors, he never passed up

an opportunity to share

his craft and teach anyone

willing to listen. Those he

taught walked away with

not just new skills, but a

deeper appreciation of the

beauty of nature. Gary’s

legacy will remain in the

faithful students who took

his words to heart.

Preceded in death by

father, Helmer and moth-

er, Lyla. He is survived by

sister, Gayle of Williston,

ND; wife, Darlene of

Enumclaw; daughters, Re-

becca Latham of Enum-

claw, Brenda (Devin)

Nickol of Omaha, NE, and

Marissa Mackay of Enum-

claw; grandchildren, Lilli-

ana, Jett, Elliott, and Mal-

colm; and stepdaughter,

Crystal Carlson. He is also

survived by numerous

friends who were family,

including honorary

pallbearers Avniel Skip-

worth, Norm Frusti and

lifelong friend Kathie


Donations to honor

Gary can be made directly

to: Plateau Outreach Min-

istries, where he spent

countless hours at the

foodbank and making

bread runs; Flint Tip Ar-

chery Club, Enumclaw,

where he was a tireless

advocate of maintaining

the range and fostering a

true community; or Hope

Lutheran Church, whose

lawn never looked greener

than when he took care of


A celebration of life

will be held from 6-8 p.m.

on Fri., April 19th at Flint

Tip Archery Range in

Enumclaw and a memori-al service will be held at 1

p.m. on Sat., April 20th at

Hope Lutheran Church in

Enumclaw. Please share a

memory of Gary on the

tribute wall at www.