Linda Knutson

First post: Mar 9, 2017

In 1996 I was dealing poker in Redding California when I received a letter from Linda, who I didn't know and who was living in Phoenix, Arizona. Linda and I both belonged to a national single's service called Single Booklovers. My listing of Samuel Beckett's "Waiting for Godot" as my number 1 favorite book of all time must have gotten her attention.  Other than that, I don't know what possessed her because she was the Dean of Students at a technical college in Phoenix and had accomplished the distinction of gaining a Masters in Medieval Literature from the University of Chicago. I wrote back to her immediately and thus began a volley of letters between us and then phone calls every other day and then I hopped on a plane to visit her in Phoenix for a weekend and then two days after returning to Redding, I proposed marriage. Her first letter reached me on August 24 1966 and we married each other two months later in a San Jose, California District Court Judge's chambers on October 25, 1966. We stayed married for 20 years. She was the best thing that ever happened to me.  We saw "Waiting for Godot" a half dozen times in as many cities.

We both loved the theatre and travelled to Oregon and Idaho to ,attend productions. Her all time favorite was Richard the III, which we also saw many times. She edited a newsletter for a Richard the III club she belonged to. She was a voracious reader and must have read 200 books a year. We never had a political arguement until last year when she supported Hilary Clinton and I backed Bernie Sanders.

Although she taught college classes for many years, when we moved to Washington she decided to find something else. She worked in a bookstore and for a NGO and then settled into tutoring.  Her students adored her and she inspired many of them in their education and to improve their lives.

The cancer was a black swan that came out of nowhere and took over her body but never her spirit. I miss you Linda.

On March 6, 2017 Linda Knutson passed away peacefully in her sleep after a 2 month battle with cancer. In January of 2017 Linda became sick and after extensive testing was originally diagnosed with a treatable form of breast cancer. After having a mastectomy, but experiencing continually worsening health, a second round of testing  revealed a tumor in the area of her colon and liver, with lumps appearing elsewhere. She was ultimately diagnosed with Stage 4 Nueroendocrine Carcinoma, an aggressive cancer characterized by its ability to spread quickly and affect multiple areas of the body simultaneously. In February, Linda agreed to try chemo therapy in an effort to slow the growth of, or reduce the size of, the tumor. After one round of chemo, Linda's blood work revealed no change in numbers at all.  The next step would typically be radiation treatment, however, after hearing her prognosis, Linda elected to start hospice care in her home where she could be near her husband Peter and two dogs, Freya and Charlie. She is survived by Peter, Freya and Charlie, and by her brother Rick, and by her nephew Chris.

Wife. Daughter. Sister. Aunt. Tutor.Teacher. Student. Friend. Dog lover. Lover of life. The world was a better place with Linda in it. Please feel free to post a picture of your own or write in Linda's journal. Whoever you are, and however your path crossed Linda's, we thank you for being a part of her life.

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