Obituary: Rasmussen, Gary Enium
Of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho peacefully passed away on July 9, 2012. He was born October 1, 1936 in Libby, Montana to Sigvard Andreas and Ora Edna (Prichard) Rasmussen. Gary attended Libby schools, graduating from Libby High School in 1954. He excelled in football during his years in high school, earning a selection to the Montana East-West Shrine All-Star Game. He then briefly attended Montana State University and Washington State University, was employed as a draftsman by Boeing in Seattle, proudly served in the United States Army including active duty overseas in Korea, and worked as a draftsman for the United States Forest Service in Libby before finally completing his bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education at Eastern Washington State College in 1964. Gary also earned a Masters Degree in Education from Whitworth College in 1975. Gary married the love of his life, Lois Helen Stenseth on May 31, 1963 in Libby.
Gary was a beloved teacher and coach. He primarily taught Algebra and Drivers Education, coached football, track, and basketball, and even served as a Drill Team instructor during his lengthy 32-year career as an educator within the Clark Fork and Coeur d’Alene School Districts. Under Coach Rasmussen, the Coeur d’Alene track teams won seven regional championships and twice placed runner-up at the state track meet. As the longtime Fundraising Chairman for the Viking Booster Club, Gary was passionate about and worked tirelessly to bring the community together to enrich the experiences and advance the opportunities of Viking student-athletes and coaches. For these accomplishments and his longtime service, Gary received the District I Distinguished Service Award from the Idaho High School Activities Association following his retirement in 1996. He was a “True Blue Viking” through and through.
Gary loved and enjoyed his family. He stated that his greatest accomplishment was in witnessing his three sons succeed not only as student-athletes but later in life as well. Gary loved nothing greater than doting on his precious granddaughters - especially in following their sporting events and scholastic activities. His retirement years featured extensive travel with wife Lois to all 50 states, cruises thru the Panama Canal and Caribbean, attending the 125th running of the Kentucky Derby, and the annual “snow bird” trips to Arizona and Florida to enjoy the warm weather and spring training baseball games. Gary was friendly to everyone he met, be it a student, community member, waitress, or stranger, and everyone called him “BIG DAD”.
Those that knew him well often speak of the tremendous pride he had as a card player and in receiving a perfect hand in both Cribbage and Pinochle games during his many years of playing. And the excitement he would bring to wagering on the horse races at the track. He also enjoyed watching his beloved Mariners and Seahawks no matter how poorly they did.
Gary is survived by his wife of 49 years, Lois Rasmussen, at the family home in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; three children, Rick (and wife Sharyl) Rasmussen of Dalton, Steve Rasmussen of Austin, Texas, and Bryan Rasmussen of Coeur d’Alene; two grandchildren, Chelsey Ann and Kylie Rae Rasmussen of Dalton. He was preceded in death by his parents, two sisters, Dorothy Rasmussen and Helen Rasmussen Ford and two half-brothers, Marland “Bud” Adkins and Emmett Adkins.
A memorial service celebrating Gary’s life will take place on Wednesday July 18, 2012 at 7:00 P.M. at the Viking Field on the campus of Coeur d’Alene High School, 5530 N. 4th Street, Coeur d’Alene with YATES FUNERAL HOME in care of the arrangements. Friends are encouraged to wear Viking Blue attire to the memorial. A reception for family and friends will follow the service at the Caddyshack, 1100 W. Prairie Avenue Coeur d’Alene. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to the newly established Gary “Big Daddy” Rasmussen Memorial Fund within the Viking Booster Club & Education Foundation, c/o Chris Costa. Address: 13403 N. Government Way #201, Hayden Idaho 83835. Phone: 208-818-4543. Email: email@example.com. Contributions in Gary’s memory may also be made to the charity or program of your choice. Please visit Gary’s memorial and sign his online guestbook at www.yatesfuneralhomes.com.