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Darrell Kogle

August 13, 1953 March 16, 2019
Darrell Kogle
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Obituary for Darrell Kogle
KOGLE, Darrell (August 13, 1953 - March 16, 2019) Darrell Blaine Kogle died March 16, 2019, due to complications from surgery with his wife of 40 years by his side. Born August 13, 1953, in Wichita, Kansas, Darrell moved to Hemet, California, with his family when he was in 3rd grade. His family moved to San Diego when he was 16, but it was in Hemet that he formed the lifelong friendships he maintained throughout his life. Darrell first played baseball at age 5 through the Boys Club of America. His sponsor was Conoco Oil and they had full blown uniforms, unusual for kids that age. During his Pony League years in Hemet, his coach was a good friend of Sparky Anderson, manager of the Cincinnati Reds. Sparky used to attend and assist with some of their practices and soon became Darrell's baseball hero. How many kids can say they were coached by Sparky Anderson? Darrell excelled as a catcher. He said a catcher can see the entire game as it is unfolding, signals the pitcher what pitch to throw, must have a quick and accurate throwing arm, and be tough behind home plate, because you're going to be hit by a baseball or two and run into by those trying to slide into home. Another thing Darrell learned from baseball is that sometimes you are going to be benched, and you have to learn to deal with this adversity. Darrell moved to Salem, Oregon, as a young man, finding work in manufactured homes. He worked in this industry for almost all his career, becoming well known and respected in both Oregon and Washington, and was twice called as an expert witness based on his knowledge of manufactured homes. He had a reputation as an honest person to do business with. Darrell always said he never wanted to meet an old customer and feel ashamed about the work he had done or the home he had sold them, and he never did. Besides manufactured home sales, Darrell was also a foreman, a service manager, a dispatcher, and a regional transportation manager. When the housing industry took a downturn, he went into the commercial door and glass business in Spokane, but went back to manufactured housing and then into RV sales until his diagnosis of cancer in May, 2015. He never fully recovered his health after that. Throughout his life, Darrell determined that his word and his handshake were his honor, and he brought that ethic into everything he did, especially in his business dealings. Darrell met his wife Gail in Oregon in July, 1977, when she was a singer in a band. He gave her a ride home on his Norton Commando motorcycle, his only form of transportation at the time, and wasn't long before he swept her off her feet. Darrell and Gail married December 29, 1978, in Silverton, Oregon. Gail brought her four-year-old son Sky into the marriage, who Darrell loved and raised as if he was his own. Gail often kidded Darrell about being a boy from Southern California marrying a Michigan girl, where she was from, but the glue in their marriage was their shared values, which brought them strength to weather the storms. Together they lived in Silverton, Stayton, and Salem, Oregon. In the fall of 1990, Darrell moved to the Spokane, WA, area and Gail joined him in the spring of 1991. It was while they lived in Liberty Lake that he took to the game of golf, eventually getting his Hole-in-One, of which he was most proud. Darrell met many fine friends on the golf course, and those friendships endured for the rest of his life. Darrell said golf was the only game he knew of where you could look at the best scenery in the world while you played a game you love with great people. Darrell and Gail, or Garrell and Dail as they were sometimes known, loved their life together and loved throwing parties both at the lake, and later when they bought their house in Spokane Valley. Their White Elephant Christmas parties were the highlight of the season. Darrell was renowned for his BBQ skills, especially his teriyaki sticks, and would sneakily leave out a key ingredient the few times he shared the recipe, just so he could make sure his were the best. His steaks were nearly as famous as his sticks. Darrell was known for his sense of humor. Darrell and Gail shared a deep and enduring love based on respect and friendship for one another. He is preceded in death by his youngest sister, Patricia Maneely. He is survived by his wife, Gail and her son Sky (Karri) Wescott; grandson Levi Wescott; mother Mary and stepfather C.N. Barber; father Gerald (Martha) Kogle; sister Cindy Daoust; brother Don Kogle; cousins Gary and Cheryl Osborn and their respective children; and nephews, nieces and cousins too many to name. Darrell also leaves behind some very close friends that were like brothers and family to him. We all miss him very much. The family would like to thank the staff at Cancer Care Northwest, especially Dr. Holbrook, and their incredible nurses, the medical staff at Deaconess Hospital on the 11th floor and in the ICU, and the staff at Hospice House of Spokane. Baseball helped shape the man Darrell would become and he loved being able to coach others, especially Little League when Sky was young. Because of his love of baseball, Gail has established the Darrell Kogle Memorial Baseball Fund in his honor, so that low-income youth can be provided with the baseball equipment they would not otherwise be able to afford. Anyone who wishes to donate to this fund, please send checks to Spokane Federal Credit Union, P.O. Box 2519, Spokane, WA, 99220-2519. Make payable to Gail Kogle and reference the D. Kogle Memorial Fund. There will be a Celebration of Life on June 8, 2019, at 1:30 PM at the Oxford Suites at 15015 E. Indiana Avenue in Spokane Valley. You are invited to come with your Darrell stories and a willingness to share them. Please stay after to visit a spell.
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