Neil was a ham at the dinner table, known for steering the conversation with an awful joke, and at the helm of a radio.
He volunteered with Spokane police and fire to keep emergency crews abreast of damage and needs during Firestorm of ‘91 and the ice storm of ‘96 when all other transmissions failed.
The amateur radio aficionado had a place at several Bloomsday aid stations and at the Coeur d’Alene Ironman before the dawn of cell phones wiped away the need for a ham radio operator.
His second language?
The oldest of three children, Neil was born in Moscow, Idaho on May 31, 1954 to Joan Anderson (deceased) and Vernon Gallup.
Neil graduated from Lewis and Clark High School in 1972 and played the saxophone with the high school band.
He later attended Washington State University and graduated with a degree in Accounting and Computer Science without acquiring a taste for Pullman water.
He survived keggers by sneaking into the bathroom and pouring his beer down the toilet.
He preferred a fine bourbon whiskey instead.
Neil was always a collector of curiosities such as radios, film cameras, fossils and radioactive marbles, but he saved his love for a trove of vinyl records.
He wasn’t the outdoor type, but he admired his father’s love for fly fishing in the great outdoors of the Pacific Northwest, Yellowstone National Park and Argentina, where he documented the adventures on several hundred rolls of film.
He explored the snow-capped wilderness on a snowmobile, played World of Warcraft with his sister and could claim bragging rights for playing Dungeons and Dragons before it was cool.
He is survived by his father, Vernon Gallup, his sisters Michele Wheeler and Corinne (Eric) Hensley and his two nieces, Kim (Mike) Berlin, Nicole Hensley, and two grand nieces, Izabelle and Alexis Berlin.
He is especially missed by his best cat buddy, Mr. Bean, who waits for his return at the front door every day.
Memorial services will be held at Hennessey-Smith Funeral Home, 2203 North Division in Spokane on Sunday, April 13, 2014 at 2:00p.m.
Interment will be on Monday, April 14, 2014, 10:00 a.m. at Spokane Memorial Gardens, 5909 Spokane-Cheney Road, Spokane WA.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to your favorite charity in Neil’s name.
Please visit Neil’s on-line memorial page at www.hennesseyfuneralhomes.com to leave a message of remembrance.