Thomas Edwin Criswell passed peacefully surrounded by the love of his family on Saturday, August 11, 2012, after a courageous battle with acute myeloid leukemia. He lived 68 wonderful years. Tim was born in Oakville, Washington, on January 31, 1944, to Glenn and Sarah Winifred (Carl) Criswell. He grew up on the family farm and attended Oakville schools through his graduation in 1962. Throughout school he excelled at sports earning 8 varsity letters in football, basketball, and baseball. After high school he attended Clover Park Technical College earning a degree in mechanics, a skill that he would use his entire life.
He married Kay Huffman in 1965 and together they moved to Seattle where he took a job at Bill Pierre Ford. It was in Seattle that they welcomed their first daughter, Cyndy. The family moved back to Elma, Wash. in 1967, where Tim went to work for Crowell Brothers and his daughters, Michelle and Jennifer joined the family. After a few years they settled in Montesano where they raised their children, welcomed their grandchildren and spent the majority of their lives making memories. While Tim and Kay later divorced, the two remained friends.
It was in Montesano that Tim began his career for Grays Harbor County as a mechanic and retired as the Road Equipment Pool Supervisor. After his retirement Tim moved to Winthrop, Wash. While there he enjoyed the seasons but lamented the deer destroying his garden. He would drive half a day to see his family for a few hours, to him the trip was more than worth it. After a few years Tim moved back to the area of his youth, Oakville, spending time reconnecting with old, dear friends.
Tim used his mechanical skills on various pit crews over the years and greatly enjoyed the 3 day Sprint circuits traveling from Cottage Grove, to Elma and finally Skagit. True to his beliefs, he made sure his daughters could change their own oil and repair a flat tire. He was always ready to give advice on an issue but allowed you to make your own mistakes. Tim also gave back to his community where he was a volunteer fire fighter for over 20 years. He was known for his strong work ethic and his positive attitude, even in the darkest times of his AML he remained hopefully and talked of the medical advances that would help future AML sufferers. Until his passing he continued to say that he “had fire in his belly and bullets left to shoot.”
He enjoyed a wide variety of pastimes from hunting to gardening and his shed was always full of seasoned wood and the cupboard full of canned foods from his garden. Over the years he had attended various concerts from ZZ Top to Aerosmith and he always loved a good CCR song on a long, boring car ride. His most cherished time though was with his family, where he loved to watch his daughter’s and grandchildren’s activities. Nothing made him happier than to have his whole family over for a Sunday dinner or to make the grandchildren biscuits and gravy for breakfast. He spent countless hours at softball games, soccer matches or his grandchildren’s activities. He always made sure to make his daughter’s friends feel like family, as they were to him. In the final months of his life he was able to enjoy his 2012 Mustang and his lovingly restored ‘63 Galaxy.
Tim is survived by his sister, Nancy Galyean of Oakville, his daughters, Cynthia (James) Jackson of Puyallup, Wash., Michelle (Steven) Reed of Aberdeen, Wash. and Jennifer (Terrell) Goble of Tacoma, Wash. His endearing spirit carries on in the eyes of his beloved grandchildren: Ashley, Danyelle, Allison, McKinley, Tyler, and Connor. He is also survived by his partner, Markie Hooper. Tim was preceded in death by his parents, Glenn Criswell and Sarah Winifred Lemmon.
A special thanks go out to Wayne Bray and Bill Bower for their unwavering dedication to Tim.
“When you left us Dad, the world was quiet again, if only for a few moments.”
Arrangements are being taken care of by the Neptune Society.
A celebration of Tim’s life will take place at 1:00 p.m. next Sunday, August 26, 2012, at the home of his daughter, Michelle Reed. Please join us at 604 Hill Road, Central Park with a special memory or photo that you would like to share.