Robert Alexander Hamack
March 07, 1929 - April 16, 2017
Beloved husband, father, brother, grandfather, colleague and friend
The Honorable Robert Alexander Hamack peacefully went home to be with God, surrounded by his daughters and their families, on April 16, 2017, at age 88. Bob was born in Seattle and attended Roosevelt High School, playing varsity basketball and baseball. He lived most of his life on the same ten acres his family acquired in the 1940’s off Olympic View Drive, where he built a home for his family a stone's throw away from the original log cabin.
Bob studied at the University of Washington, where his father was a professor, and earned a Masters in Law. He was a member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity, did an internship with the FBI under J Edgar Hoover, and served as a supply clerk in the Army at the tail end of the Korean War. After graduating from UW, he worked as an insurance adjuster, where he met his wife Sandra. He went on to start a law practice, Fetty, Olwell and Hamack, where he practiced privately, in addition to serving as Judge Pro Tem for the Snohomish County District Court. In 1973, he was appointed as County Commissioner, and began to serve as a Judge full time.
In 1976, he accepted a position as a Magistrate and Judge Pro Tem with the City of Seattle, where he worked until his retirement at the age of 68. He loved the law and found the work challenging. He enjoyed seeing the courts treat all members of society equally and fairly, and felt one of the most challenging aspects of imposing sentences was both protecting society and rehabilitating the criminal at the same time.
After his retirement Bob became Adjunct Faculty at Puget Sound Christian College. He developed his own curriculum and was interested in getting students to think, not necessarily agree with him, but to move them to some degree of maturity.
He was active in many organizations as a member or volunteer during his lifetime; an active member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church in Lynnwood, Washington State Bar Association, American Judges Association, Stevens Hospital Ethics Committee, Seattle Art Museum, Church Leader, Sunday School Teacher, Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternal Organization, Citizen Liaison Committee in Edmonds, and many others.
Throughout his years he had many hobbies, which brought him great joy. He enjoyed singing opera, practiced with a private tutor for many years, and had a magnificent voice until the end. He enjoyed golf, model trains, was an avid reader, enjoyed intelligent conversation, studied biblical theology, and loved art and antiquities.
He lived with Alzheimer’s for the last decade of his life, but still maintained a substantial sense of humor, love of singing, and for the most part good manners; although the sensor for what could be mentioned in public suffered irretrievable loss, making outings with him amusing beyond comprehension at times.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 54 years, Sandra Lee Hamack. He fell hard for Sandy when they met, and the two were an amazing pair. He was a loving, gentle husband, and together they enjoyed building their home, raising their children, church activities, travelling, clamming, gardening, and spending time with their friends and extended families. He spent his final two and a half years in the Memory Care Unit at CRISTA in Shoreline, where he was dearly loved and appreciated for his kindness, manners, humor, and participation in singing.
He leaves behind three daughters and sons in law, who mourn his passing greatly; Lesley Ann McArthur (Gordon McArthur) of Whidbey Island, WA, Lise Marie Pettigrew (Ray Pettigrew) of Snohomish, WA, and Sydney Lee Hamack (Everett Cortez) of Seattle, WA. He leaves seven grandchildren; Elizabeth McArthur, Christopher Pettigrew, Sarah McArthur, Katherine Yoder (Nathan Yoder), Melissa Stobb (Richard Stobb), Julia Chen (Ben Chen), and Madeline Pettigrew, and one great grandson Franklin Chen.
He was also preceded in death by; his father Frank Hartmond Hamack, mother Pearl Elberteen Alexander, brother Frank Hartmond Hamack Jr., brother Richard Lyle Hamack, and nephew Kraig Hamack.
Services for Robert Hamack are as follows:
A viewing at Solie Funeral Home in Everett on Friday April 21st from 2-4 PM
Graveside at Floral Hills Cemetery on Saturday April 22nd at 11AM
Memorial at Lynnwood Orthodox Presbyterian Church on May 13th at 11 AM