UPDATE: This post has been changed since it was first published. A photo of the memorial bench created for the Stockleys has been added.
A Seattle Times story this morning brought the reminder that Sunday will mark 10 years since an Alaska Airlines MD-83 airplane crashed into the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California, killing all 88 passengers and crew onboard. The plane was returning from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Among those killed that day were popular and well-known Eastlake houseboat residents Tom and Peggy Stockley. Tom was the wine columnist for the Seattle Times and “perhaps the nicest guy in Western Washington,” as one Eastlake resident who knew him wrote to me this morning.
Peggy was active in the Floating Homes Association and other community groups. In a 2005 rememberance of her parents, their daughter, Paige, said of her: “My mother strolled the docks in folk dresses from her many wine trips with my dad, taking care of the dock cats, chatting with the neighbors and working on the Floating Homes Association newsletter and other Eastlake projects.”
Today, a memorial bench at Lynn Street Park celebrates the Stockleys in the colorful tiles that cover its surface. There are wine bottles, a typewriter, a cat, boats, ducks, flowers and more depicted on the bench.
If you knew Tom and Peggy, please feel free to share your reminiscences in the comments to this post.