Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Marvin Armstrong

March 1929 - Nov. 20, 2018


November 29, 2018

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4 (NIV)

Marvin Armstrong believed this promise of God and God fulfilled this promise. Marvin, 89, passed away on November 20, 2018, in Richland, Washington. Marvin was born March, 1929, to Bill and Pearl Armstrong on the north side of Saddle Mountain in Corfu, Wash. As a small lad, he played on the banks of Lower Crab Creek. Following a move from Corfu to LaCrosse, Marvin thrived, lettering in three sports and graduating high school in 1948. Life changed for Marvin at the age 16 with the death of his dad.

Following the path of an uncle, Marvin joined Boilermakers Local #242 in Spokane and worked on a variety of construction sites across the western states including Hanford; Grand Coulee Dam; Chief Joseph Dam; Lewiston, Idaho; Four Corners, New Mexico; and California.

He was always a farmer at heart. He and his brother farmed near Camp Royal on the south side of Frenchman Hill – near where his grandparents had homesteaded in the 1900's. This is where he met his wife, Shirley, in 1961. They married in 1963. Due to bottoming crop prices, Marvin found work in Seattle at PACCAR and Ederer Engineering. It was during this time, his two children were born, Lenore and William (Bill).

Marvin loved to play sports of all kinds and watched every sporting event on television (even golf and fishing). He was an avid golfer and played golf at every opportunity. He felt he could always improve so he attended the Harvey Penick Golf Academy in Austin, Texas, bringing home the famous “Little Green Book.”

In retirement, Marvin's dream was to travel to Israel and Alaska and the Lord made it possible. He made three trips to the Holy Land, discovering where Jesus walked. In Alaska, he loved fishing for halibut, salmon and trout. On excursions to Pruhoe Bay, Eagle, Denali, Wrangle, Brooks River and other far-flung destinations, he always had his camera ready.

Because his mother's family had emigrated from Norway, he and Shirley spent time in the Scandinavian countries and sailed the Norwegian coast. He loved New Orleans and returned when able. Winter in Hawaii was warm but not home.

Marvin's love of farming became a passion for growing dahlias. Retirement allowed him time to exhibit at dahlia shows and judge at state, national and international shows.

Friends described him as “such a kind man.” Marvin was preceded in death by his parents, Bill and Pearl; brother, Lloyd (Mick), and sisters, Marvell and Donna. Survived by wife, Shirley, and children, Lenore (Maydole) and Bill.

Memorial services will be 1:00 PM December 7, 2018, at the Soap Lake First Baptist Church, 322 Division St. South, Soap Lake, WA.


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