Roy was born on September 11, 1934, in Port Angeles, Washington, to Leonard and Helen Ecklund. He is preceded in death by his father, his mother, his sister Shirley and brother-in-law Ron Olsen.
He attended school in Port Angeles, then attended Bremerton Community College for two years. Roy served in the Army’s Special Service Branch, serving in Korea. He received an honorable discharge on April 20, 1961.
Roy moved to Alaska in 1962 and lived in Sitka, Ketchikan and Anchorage where he worked in the surveying business, before moving to Kodiak after the March 27, 1964, earthquake. Roy met Lita Lohse in 1965 and they were married on March 27, 1966. When he married Lita he became a great stepdad to Douglas, Lydia, Donna and Renee. When they were in grade school, Roy an avid sports fisherman, taught them how to fish by first showing them on the front lawn how to hold and cast a fishing pole. Later at the perfect fishing spot after hooking a big salmon he would hand his pole to one of the children so they could experience the thrill of landing a big fish. He also has three daughters Cathy, Pamela and Judy who lived in Washington.
Roy received his registered surveying license in Anchorage in July of 1967 and two years later opened his own land surveying company, Ecklund Surveying. He did many projects for the City of Kodiak, the Kodiak Island Borough, the Terror Lake Project as well as the State of Alaska, Brechan Construction, Anderson Construction and worked in many of Kodiak’s villages. He also did a great deal of surveying work for many individuals. Roy retired in 2000.
After retirement Roy and Lita were wonderful hosts, they held many legendary parties at their home in Kalsin Bay. These were holiday and birthday parties and others that needed no theme or special reason to get together with friends. He enjoyed spending time with his loving wife Lita a constant, devoted companion for their 48-year marriage. He also enjoyed hunting, hiking, reading westerns and historical literature.
Roy belonged to the V.F.W., American Legion Post #17, the NRA, the Elks Lodge #1772 and the Pioneers of Alaska. He was the “special” cook at the Pioneers picnic help annually at the Buskin Beach House, grilling his delicious salmon for all to enjoy and Roy And Lita were elected King and Queen to represent the Kodiak Pioneers of Alaska in the Crab Festival Parade one year.
Roy was quite a marksman and won the Alaska State Trap Shooting Competition in 1986 in Anchorage as well as the Western Division Trap Shoot Competition. He was a very active outdoorsman, often going hunting, hiking and fishing. He loved to take others fishing or for drives so he could show them the beauty and wonders of Kodiak. Roy enjoyed his morning coffee at King’s Diner with the guys. He was a somewhat private man sometimes when asked where he caught that fish he would say “in the corner of the mouth.”
Roy was always willing to help anyone, at any time when needed, which is why he carried a towrope in the back of his truck just in case he came across someone in a ditch. He was a loving husband, father and well respected by his family and wide circle of friends. He will be dearly missed by many as one of Kodiak’s finest.
Roy is survived by his wife Lita Ecklund, daughters Cathy Thanem of Port Angeles, Pamela Walters of Moses Lake and Judy Wiggins of Seattle, all in Washington. His four stepchildren Douglas Lohse of Portland, Oregon, Lydia Lohse of Homer, Donna Cawley of Centralia, Washington, and Renee Vail of Marysville, Washington, his nephew Jim Olsen of Woodenville, Washington, and niece Debbie Olsen of Bremerton. Washington. He is also survived by 18 grandchildren and 20 great grandchildren. The only grandson to live in Kodiak is Kevin Cawley and his family, who were able to enjoy spending time with him the past five years.
The family would like to express their thanks to the staff at Providence Hospital both here in Kodiak and in Anchorage and the staff who flew Roy to Anchorage for further care.
In lieu of flowers you may make donations to the Kodiak Salvation Army, P.O. Box 484, Kodiak AK 99615 or Hospice of Kodiak PO Box 8682, Kodiak, AK 99615
A memorial service will be held at the Elks Lodge # 1772 from 3-7 p.m. on June 6. A repast will follow. Please bring your favorite dish if you wish.
Condolences may be sent to the Roy Ecklund Family, P.O. Box 146, Kodiak, AK 99615