Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Norman Kunze

Sept. 29, 1935 - Aug. 19, 2018


September 20, 2018

Norman H. Kunze

Norman H. Kunze

Norman H. Kunze, a life time Colfax resident, passed away on Sunday, August 19, 2018, at his home in Yuma Arizona.

Norman was born September 29, 1935, at his childhood home in Diamond, Wash., to John and Maria Kunze. He graduated from Colfax High School in 1954. Norman enlisted in the army in December of 1954 and served his country in Puerto Rico as a wheeled vehicle mechanic. He received an honorable discharge from the army in 1956 and returned to Colfax and began farming for Herb Moore.

Norman married Elizabeth Octavia Schmitz of Colfax, Wash. They were married for forty-one years until her passing in August 1998. They had five children, JoAnne (Kunze) Weathermon, Debra Kunze, Michael Kunze, Susan (Kunze) Huey and Betsy (Kunze) Modrak.

Norman and his wife returned to his childhood home in Diamond, Wash., where they raised their children. Norman took over the farm that his father had leased and farmed wheat and barley. During the winter months he worked for Spokane Seed Company. Norman after working full-time for Spokane Seed retired in 1997.

Norman loved farming and often said that, "He liked nothing better than being on a tractor plowing the fields." He worked for Ernie and Kevin Scholz doing fall, spring and summer work for many years. While living in Yuma, he would take daily drives surveying the crops and became friends with many of the area farmers. Norman also enjoyed his family and friends traveling, fishing, boating and gardening. He loved dropping in on family and friends just to shoot the breeze. Norman was a very caring man and went out of his way to lend a helping hand to whom ever needed it.

Norman was a life-long member of St. Patrick Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, Elks Lodge, and American Legion.

Norman married longtime friend, Charlene Geier, on December 11,1999. They were happily married for 17 years until her passing on September 14, 2016. They spent their winters in Yuma, Arizona.

Norman is survived by his two daughter's, Susan (Bob) Huey, Yuma, Ariz., Betsy (Bevin) Modrak, Boise, Idaho; son, Michael Kunze, Vancouver, Wash.; seven biological grandchildren; three step-children; ten step-grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and sister, Delores Faeber.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Maria Kunze; Elizabeth Kunze, and Charlene Geier Kunze; two daughters, JoAnne Weathermon and Debra Kunze; and two brothers, John Kunze and Raymond Kunze.

Funeral services are set for September 29, 2018, at 11:00 AM at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Colfax. Burial will be at the Colfax Cemetery.

Family suggests memorial gifts be made to the Whitman Hospital Auxiliary.


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