Stuart Jones was born April 10th, 1948 in Indiana, PA to Loren and Jean Jones. He died suddenly on December 24th, 2019 at Nolte State Park in Enumclaw, WA, walking in nature with his wife of 41 years, Kathleen Perkins-Jones.
Stu grew up in a Presbyterian family – his father a minister – moving to Niagara Falls, NY, then spending his high school years in Lewistown, MT where he was ASB President at Fergus High School, a loved working on a cattle ranch. Encouraged to attend a religious college in Tarkio, MO, Stu quickly decided Saturday morning classes and mandatory bathroom cleanups weren’t for him. He left school and soon chose to enlist in the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War where he was a mechanic and decorated combat marine in helicopter units.
Upon returning, he graduated from Washington State University (which doomed him to be a lifelong, malcontent fan of Cougars football) and then earned a degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Washington. He worked as an athletic trainer and physical therapist at the Seattle Sports Medicine Clinic, eventually establishing his own practice in Enumclaw, WA that he ran for almost 20 years before retiring in 2009.
Stu deeply enjoyed nature and the stars. At different points in his life he was equally excited about mountaineering, trekking in nature, cycling, swimming, learning Spanish, growing plants, exploring new cooking techniques, reading eastern philosophy and attending games of his favorite team, the Seattle Mariners. Through a battle with a unique cancer, attributed to his service in Vietnam, affected him over the last decade of his life, his powerful, positive desire to live and grow allowed him to defy his prognosis, enjoying a happy and very active life until the end.
Stu was a likeable guy, an eternal optimist, enjoyed and respected by the people he came across in life. He was quick with a light-hearted joke, but he was also an intensely thoughtful, private person. He staunchly loved his family and unconditionally supported their dreams and well-being with compassion, dedication, hard work, interest and wisdom. He married his soulmate Kathy in 1978, and raised two children who were also his great friends: Kristopher of Seattle, WA and Rebecca of Del Mar, CA. He was really looking forward to seeing his daughter marry her fiancé Tom in May 2020. He is further survived by his beloved mother-in-law Patricia Perkins, Enumclaw, WA, and three brothers: Loren (LaRae), Juneau, AK; Mark (Karla), Bettendorf, IA; and Tim (Donna), Las Cruces, NM. He will be deeply missed every single day.
Please join us for a commemoration of his life from 1:00 to 4:00 pm on Saturday, January 25th, 2020 at the Enumclaw VFW Hall, located at 44426 244th Ave SE, Enumclaw, WA 98022. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Washington State Parks Foundation.