George Garrels | Passages

George Garrels, beloved husband, father, friend, passed on Easter Sunday, March 31, 2024, in the loving arms of his family. George was 90 years old.

George was born August 28, 1933, in Hollywood, CA, and grew up in Walnut Creek, in the East Bay of San Francisco. He graduated from Mt. Diablo High School and attended East Contra Costa College, where he also worked in the bookstore. One day he said to the bookstore manager, Peggy, “I need a girlfriend,” to which Peggy replied, “I’ll find one for you!” When George saw Audrey Adams walk through the door, he asked, “How about that one?” That was the beginning of a 70-year love affair.

George and Audrey married in 1955, after which they spent three years stationed in Germany with the Air Force, where George was a pilot. After his honorable discharge, George and

Audrey moved to Bellevue WA, where George took a position as an aeronautical engineer with the Boeing Company. During his thirty-year career with Boeing, George moved from engineering into marketing, then aircraft sales.

Son Steve was born in 1960, followed by daughter Lynn in 1962. The family’s first trip to Orcas Island was a camping adventure to Moran State Park, where it rained. When their tent leaked, the family decamped to Beach Haven Resort, where they became summer regulars. Eventually they purchased property just north of the resort, where George built a cabin, followed by the house to which he and Audrey retired in 1990.

George and Audrey are faithful members of Emmanuel Episcopal Church, where George helped care for the campus facilities, cashiered at the annual Market Day, and mentored children in carving Halloween pumpkins and designing and flying paper airplanes. During Christmas season, George crafted wooden toys in his basement shop, to give to children.

George’s family and friends remember George as a deeply kind and caring man, who would drop everything to help. When his son Steve wanted to play soccer and there was no coach, George stepped up, even though he knew nothing about soccer.

George his survived by his beloved wife of 69 years, Audrey; his children Steve Garrels and Lynn Martin, and his two grandchildren Ashley and Connor.

George’s life will be celebrated on May 11 at a 1 p.m. service at Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Orcas Island.