WENDY ANN BIRDWELL, née WEBSTER

September 4, 1942 –February 9, 2018

Our older sister, Wendy, worked through her first 25 years to find that elusive path to personal happiness, finding many challenges along the way. Then, while working at Issaquah Sky Sports parachuting center, she found Clarence “Topper” Birdwell, an experienced skydiver and fun companion. Shortly after meeting, they married and started a happy life together. Sadly though, after just a year of marriage and no children, she witnessed his death in a parachuting accident and her life challenges started all over again.

Despite this setback, Wendy remained connected to her family, sister Trudy Krastins, of Issaquah, sister Sheila Finkenbinder, of Sitka, Alaska and brother David Webster, of Anacortes. Over the next 50 years she put her considerable artistic talents to work for her extended family, including sewing beautiful stuffed animals and Christmas stockings for nieces and nephews, making wonderful collages from simple supplies, doing needlepoint and being a reliable baker for holiday events. She definitely had an eye for color, and was the most artistic of all of us. We, her siblings, are envious she was the only one in the family who learned to play the Hammond organ our father kept in the living room. She also loved going to the movies, and brother David knew he could always ask her for recommendations, as she’d have seen everything on the first day out in theaters.

Wendy grew up in the Benotho neighborhood on the south end of Mercer Island from 1950 to 1964, spending lots of time on the water and at the Beach Club. She attended Mercer Island High School and St. Paul’s in Walla Walla, and graduated from Western Washington University. She lived and worked in Seattle most of her adult life and at 65 moved into the welcoming halls of the Timber Ridge retirement community in Issaquah where she made many friends and benefited from their comraderie, shared dinners and joke nights, and caring attention to her well being. Moving there was the best decision she made in her later years. Special thanks go to her friends Marsha, Mollie, Jean, June and Tina at Timber Ridge.

In her last few months the sad scourge of dementia caught up with Wendy. We thank the compassionate and professional attention from the staff in Briarwood’s memory care unit, particularly that of Jessica Colis, R.N. who excelled as an empathetic caregiver.

More in Obituaries

JEAN L. (FORS) KRSAK

Jean L. (Fors) Krsak, age 69, passed away peacefully on the morning… Continue reading

MARGUERITE KOVACS CELEBRATION OF LIFE

The family of Marguerite Kovacs cordially invites you to join in celebrating… Continue reading

JANE BROWN MARICH

October 24, 1924 - July 3, 2019 Jane Alice Brown was born… Continue reading

PATRICIA ANN BARRETT

Patricia Ann Barrett was a registered nurse who had a gift for… Continue reading

VERNON CARLTON BRYANT, JR.

On Friday, June 7, Vernon Carlton Bryant, Jr., 91, was granted an… Continue reading

MARY LOU LEDBETTER

Mary Lou Ledbetter passed away peacefully on May 31, 2019, at her… Continue reading

JANET ALWYNNE JARED

Janet Alwynne Jared, a longtime resident of Mercer Island, died peacefully with… Continue reading

KAI HIP ENG, D.M.D.

January 24, 1930 – May 21, 2019 Dr. Kai Hip Eng, 89,… Continue reading

DR. JAMES M. HANSON

Dr. James M. Hanson of Mercer Island, WA died May 10 after… Continue reading

Most Read