On Monday, Feb. 1, 2016, Anne Lahti, Aged 98, passed quietly from this life to the next. At the time, she was living at Heritage Court Assisted Living in Everett.
Anne was born Jessie Annetta to Stanley and Ruth Ellen (Stevens) McAllister at home on June 12, 1917, in Seattle. She had one older step-brother, Robert Kramer, and twin younger brothers, Frank and Leslie McAllister. They were raised in West Seattle and loved exploring on Alki Beach. Anne graduated high school in Seattle.
She married Leo V. Harris; and on Dec. 31, 1942, their son, Steven, was born. Leo died when Steven was a young toddler. As a young widow, Anne met Arne Lahti and they were married on Dec. 5, 1945. For their honeymoon, they took a short boat trip to Victoria, Canada and then went hiking in the Olympic Mountains. On Aug. 31, 1948, their daughter, Melisa Anne was born.
In 1949, they moved from Seattle to Richmond Beach. They had four acres, surrounded by fields and trees. They grew lots of vegetables and raised various animals, including, at one time, 500 rabbits! Both Anne and Arne loved the outdoors. Camping and fishing were a big part of their life. Often, on summer weekends, they would pack up the kids and take off for the mountains.
Arne died in 1976, and a few years later Anne moved to Whidbey Island to be close to family.
Anne was deeply spiritual. She was a dedicated Christian and had a strong and abiding prayer life. She experienced God’s presence in her life on a daily basis and loved to share her faith with others. She was treasurer of the Clinton Aglow Fellowship for many years. Over the years, she opened her heart and her home to many young people. They might stay for a meal or for a while. She was generous and caring.
Anne loved gardening, baking, sewing and reading. She worked in the medical profession for many years and “retired” several times. After retiring, she made jams, jellies and baked goods to sell at the Bayview Farmers Market. She was a vendor there for 22 years. She also sewed animal blankets and stuffed animals for family and friends.
Anne is survived by her brother Frank McAllister; her step-son, Greg Lahti; daughter Melisa Doss; grandchildren, Jacob Doss (Anna), Christopher Doss (Katrina), Philip Doss (Alysia), Erin Shelby (Mike), Scott Lahti ( Autumn), Stephanie Weed and Malory Lahti; and great-grandchildren, Tyler Doss, Johnathan, Zoe and Collette Doss, Jason Doss, Spencer Willard, Paige Ableman and Aurora Lahti.
She was preceded in death by her husbands, Leo Harris and Arne Lahti; her son, Steve Lahti in September 2015; and her brothers, Robert Kramer and Leslie McAllister.
While Anne’s life held many challenges, she met and overcame them with determination. She was strong and independent. Although in her last years dementia took away many parts of her memory, she retained her sense of humor.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 5, at St. Augustine’s in-the-Woods Episcopal Church in Freeland, 5217 Honeymoon Bay Road. A reception will follow immediately at the church.