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Earl Duane Jess



Earl Duane Jess, 72, quietly passed away Thursday afternoon, December 31, 2015, in Spokane, Washington, with his family by his side. Born August 12, 1943, in Mason City, Washington, to Elmer and Viola Thoren-Jess, Earl went on to attend Coulee City High School in Coulee City, Washington.  On September 20, 1965, Earl joined the National Guard and served as a Vehicle Mechanic, Motor Sergeant with the 1041st Transportation Co. of Ephrata, Washington, until his retirement February 8, 1988. 

Saturday, April 18, 1970, forever changed Earl’s life, for on that early spring day in the Grand Coulee, Washington, Zion Lutheran Church, Earl married Miss Vickie Ehlers.  After 10 years living in Leahy Junction, Washington, working as a farm hand and jack-of-all-trades for Horace Bozarth, Earl realized his lifelong dream of owning and working his own place.  For 32 years, Earl and Vickie raised wheat, cattle and their family outside of Grand Coulee.  In September of 2002, Earl retired and moved to Brewster, Washington, where they belonged to Hope Lutheran Church.  Earl had been an active member of the Del Rio Grange 828, Brewster Grange, Douglas County Fire District #3, and American Legion Post 28. After his family, Earl’s greatest love and passion was farming.  He never grew tired of working the land from before sunrise to well after sunset.

Predeceased by his son, Dean Jess; both parents and his sister, June Jess; Earl’s legacy lives on through his partner of 45 years and love of his life: Vickie Jess; children: William Jess (Misty Knowlton) and Scott Jess (Keyanna); grandchildren: Douglas Jess, William Jess Jr., Ethan Jess, Gabe Jess, and Azrael Jess; sister, Debra Jess; and his ever-faithful black lab “Bell.”

On Wednesday, January 13, 2016, at 1:30 p.m., graveside services with military honors will take place for Earl at the Washington State Veterans Cemetery, 21702 West Espanola Road, Medical Lake, Washington.

His family requests that any donations be made in Earl’s memory to: The American Diabetes Assn. 1701 North Beauregard Street, Alexandria, VA 22311, 1-800-DIABETES (800-342-2383) or

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