Robert Wayne Higbee

Robert Wayne Higbee

Robert Wayne Higbee, artist and teacher, passed away Oct. 25, 2015, surrounded by his loving family.

Bob was an inspiration to many, bringing joy and laughter wherever he went. He had a passion for finding beauty, whether it was hidden in a person, a flower, a stone, or deep in wood. He will be greatly missed.

Born Oct. 18, 1934, Bob grew up among the redwoods of Crescent City, Calif.

On June 23, 1956, he married Jo Ann Lesh. He and Joannie lived in Santa Barbara, Calif., where he taught at Santa Barbara High School.

In 1980, they moved to Whidbey Island, where Bob worked as a counselor at Sno-Isle Skills Center in Everett.

Joannie died in 2007, and on Aug. 1, 2010, Bob married Lorena Hunt Welch.

Bob was a true renaissance man. Words to describe him include: educator, artist, actor and director, author, poet, traveler, gardener, friend and enthusiast for life. Bob’s photographs and wooden vases have been shown in galleries throughout the western United States.

Bob was loved by friends and family. He leaves behind his two daughters Kathy Higbee (Omaha, Neb.) and Maija (James) Miller (Santa Barbara, Calif.); his 12 grandchildren, Erik, Natasha and Dan Higbee, Tessa Jo, Andrew and Jakob Miller, Jenna and Emma Metcalf, Karmell and Nakota Grimm and Okes and Odin Newey. He is also survived by his wife Lorena Higbee; his sister Kathy Hazslip (Bellevue, Wash.), his sister Ritva Hammalainen (Helsinki, Finland), Lorena’s daughters Nicole (Don) Metcalf (Snohomish, Wash.), Tianna (Robert Newey) Welch (Bend, Ore.), Shaylyn (Wes) Grimm (Langley) and a much-loved extended family.

A memorial will be held at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, July 9, at Washington Park in Anacortes, followed by a short hike.

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