Chester Cornelius ‘Chet’ Jonason

Chester Cornelius ‘Chet’ Jonason, 86, a longtime Harborite and 38 year employee at Grays Harbor Paper in Hoquiam, died Monday evening, March 11, 2013, at his home in Cosmopolis, Washington.

Chester was born on November 9, 1926, in Aberdeen, Washington, to Arthur Kristian and Sigrid Louise (Ross) Jonassen. He grew up in Aberdeen and joined the U.S. Army at the age of 17 in 1944. It was the Army that changed his last name from Jonassen to Jonason. Chester let it be. He served in the 1005th Engineers Spec. Construction Company in the Pacific and was working on a project for the Invasion of Japan. He was Honorably Discharged in 1946, and returned to Aberdeen where he went to work for Grays Harbor Paper in 1951. He retired in 1988 after 38 years with the company.

On November 14, 1960, Chester married Frances Capps in Aberdeen. She survives at the family home.

Just before his retirement he started taking classes on locksmithing and follow his retirement started Chet’s Locksmith in 1988. He loved his job and retired in 2007.

Chet was a lifetime member of the Hoquiam VFW, Post 1135. He liked to go blackberry picking, travel, dig clams and liked to tinker and fix things.

Chet is survived by his wife of 52 years, Frances Jonason in Cosmopolis; two daughters, Judith Ann and husband, Frank Bartczak of Clear Lake Oaks, Calif. and Elaine Frances and husband, Kyle Imler of Hoquiam; a brother, Arthur Sigurd and wife, Mary Jonassen of Yakima; a sister, Joyce Hammond of Seattle; step-brother, Charles and wife, Marlys Canfield of Benton, Ark.; two grandchildren, Demitria and Michael Thomas; and many nephews and nieces and a large family in Norway who he enjoyed visiting. Chet was preceded in death by a daughter, Ilene Marie Thomas in 2007; and a stepbrother, Hans Lorentzen.

There will be a Celebration of Chet’s life at 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 20, 2013, at Immanuel Baptist Church, 1200 Soule Ave, Hoquiam.

A message of condolence or of a memory can be left for the family at

Arrangements are through Fern Hill Funeral Home in Aberdeen.