Lois Ellen Brandt | Passages

Lois Ellen Brandt

August 23, 1927 – November 18, 2023

Lois Brandt passed away in her home of 60 years in Bellevue, WA surrounded by her loved ones.

Lois was born in Portland, OR to Walter & Madeline Schmidt. After graduating from high school, she moved with her family to Hermiston, OR to help in her father’s plumbing business. There she met the love of her life, Harold (Hal) Brandt. Hal & Lois married in 1949 in a double wedding with her sister Geri. The couple moved to WA in 1954 to start their family, where they raised their two children, Cheryl and Eric.

The eldest of five sisters, Lois cherished her role as family matriarch. She was generous without measure to family, friends, and her community. Lois was a naturally gifted artist and photographer, she never left home without her camera. Her photo albums have filled an entire room, a testament to her desire to capture and remember the significant events in her life.

Hal & Lois lived part-time on Orcas Island where they built their dream cabin in the 1960’s. Together, they purchased a local marina, now Brandt’s Landing Marina, which Lois managed for years along with harbormaster, Fred Nicol. Hal & Lois developed the adjacent land into Smuggler’s Villa Resort, a 20 unit condominium association on the north shore of the Island. Lois & Hal shared their love of Orcas Island with countless people. Lois organized family reunions for the Schmidt and Brandt families and hosted a yearly Sisters’ Reunion at the cabin for more than two decades, where the sisters enjoyed creating everlasting memories. Lois was also a member of the Orcas American Legion for numerous years.

Lois’ love of the outdoors and natural spaces compelled her to spearhead the creation of Coal Creek Park in Bellevue. Lois spent countless hours exploring the creek while her kids attended school. Lois was instrumental in procuring park space for King County by meeting with local farmers and convincing them to sell some of their land to preserve this lush greenspace.

Lois is preceded in death by her husband Hal, her mother, father, and her sisters Geraldine and Marjorie. Lois is survived by her children Cheryl Castagna (Bob) and Eric Brandt; her sisters Gail and Wallis; her grandchildren Anthony Castagna, Nicholas Castagna, and Rion Brandt (Savannah); her great-grandchildren Sophia & Jayden; cousins Ernie Schmidt and Steve Schmidt; and dozens of adoring nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM on March 23, 2024 at Smuggler’s Villa Resort Conference Room located at 54 Hunt Road, Eastsound, WA 98245.