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July 15, 1930-January 16, 2015

Donald L Thoreson, loving husband, father and grandfather, passed away peacefully, with his family at his side, on January 16, 2015.  

Don was born in Pekin, North Dakota, on July 15, 1930, the fifth child of Christine Johanna and Thorfin Hjalmer Thoreson.   He moved to Seattle with his family in 1942, where he graduated from Garfield High School.  

Don obtained his Bachelor of Arts and Doctorate of Jurisprudence degrees from the University of Washington, where he was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity.  After graduation, he spent two years in the Army, in the Military Police, stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky.  Returning to Seattle, he joined Scotty Gibbon’s solo law firm, which became Gibbon & Thoreson.  The firm later became Thoreson, Yost, Berry & Matthews.  Don then joined Betts Patterson & Mines as a member of the firm’s Business Transactions and Corporate Law and Estate Planning and Probate Practice Groups, until his retirement in 2013.

 Don was active in the King County Bar Association, where he was a Bar Examiner;  the American Association of Homes for the Aging;  the Estate Planning Council of Seattle;  and was a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel.  He was a past-president of the Foss Home and Village, and of the Hearthstone Retirement Center;  past-president of the Seattle Executives Association; past-president of the Norwegian American Chamber of Commerce and also the Nordic Heritage Museum.  He was a member of the Seattle Tennis Club.  

He sang in the choir at Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church, and later at Magnolia Lutheran Church.

Don was loved for his warm, caring personality and his generous heart. His greatest joy in life was spending time with his family, including his three grandchildren whom he loved dearly. A lifelong resident of Seattle, he loved the Pacific Northwest and especially the family beach home on Discovery Bay. He was also an ardent Husky football fan, and spent many a Saturday afternoon at Husky stadium.

He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Kay;  his son Eric (Andrea) of Seattle, daughter Allison Bhusri (Aneel) of San Francisco, and son Paul of Medellin, Colombia;  grandchildren Griffin (12), Paige (10) and Anna (5); and his sister Elaine Anderson (Donald) of Tacoma. 

A Celebration of his Life will be held at 11 am Friday January 23, at Magnolia Lutheran Church, with a reception following at the University Club.

Remembrances may be made to Magnolia Lutheran Church, the University of Washington School of Law and the Nordic Heritage Museum. 


Make a donation to The Co-op Funeral Home of People's Memorial