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Thomas Craig George


September 5, 2019

Thomas Craig George, age 78, died in Tucson, AZ on August 15, 2019. Craig was preceded in death by his parents Robert and Lora George. He leaves his beloved wife Katherine of 52 years; his son Tom and his wife Betsy George (Graham, Lacy), his daughter Katrina and her husband Michael Sents (Alex, Raelee, J.T.), and his daughter Heidi and her husband Travis Peterson (Myah, Emma). He also leaves behind his older brother, Berke George. Craig was a loving husband, father, grandfather and friend to all.

Craig grew up in California, graduating from Apple Valley High School. During college, he was a member of Delta Upsilon. After college, he entered the Navy where he spent over 20 years serving his country honorably during the Vietnam War, as well as tours in Asia, Europe, and stateside.

After retiring from the Navy, Craig worked in the private sector for 10 years in MN before moving to Dayton, WA to be closer to family. While in Dayton, he was an active community member, including over 15 years as Mayor. Craig always loved connecting with and serving his community in as many ways as he could.

The defining characteristic of Craig’s life was service. He lived to help others. Whether as the mayor of a small town, a Naval officer, a baseball umpire, or as a thoughtful neighbor, Craig always gave of himself. Anyone who ever met him knew that he would always be there for them, no questions asked. He simply loved “doing his part,” and putting smiles on people’s faces. Over the years that took many forms, from calling balls and strikes on countless Little League fields, to donning a dress to participate in Dayton’s annual tricycle “drag” race. “PaG,” as his grandkids affectionately called him, was a devoted family man and he would do anything for those he held most dear.

It is difficult to overstate Craig’s love of sports. He never missed an opportunity to watch or talk about a ballgame. He loved to read novels and watch movies, the sappier the better. He bonded with his son over baseball, and with his daughters over Hallmark specials! Craig created many wonderful memories for people. He had a way of making everyone feel welcome with his warm personality and room-filling laugh, and he always made sure to include everyone in conversation. Wallflowers didn’t stand a chance with Craig in the room. While his cheeseburgers and frozen daiquiris were the stuff of legend, he made family gatherings truly special with his easy-going demeanor and Texas-sized heart.

A service will be held for Craig next summer in Dayton, Wash., when all of his family will be able to gather together to celebrate his life. Memorial donations may be made to the Ronald McDonald House (Spokane, Wash.) or the Humane Society in Walla Walla, Wash.


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