Ronald (Ron) Bertram passed away on Wednesday, May 23, 2018 at Emerald Care in Wapato, WA. Ron was born August 4, 1942 to Frank and Glenora Bertram in Tacoma, WA. Ron spent his early years in Tacoma surrounded by a large extended family. He moved with his family to Wenatchee for his Junior High years where he participated in football, basketball, and baseball. In his freshmen year, Ron was voted Prince of the Apple Blossom Festival.
After completing his sophomore year in Wenatchee, the family moved back to Tacoma and Ron completed his high school education at Lincoln High School. He earned All City honors in football his senior year and was a representative in the school senate.
Ron worked at the Tacoma Post Office and participated in ROTC while attending the University of Puget Sound where he earned a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in Air Science. He later earned a B.A. in Economics from the University of Washington.
Following graduation, Ron joined the Air Force spending three years at Paine Field in Everett. It was during this time that he met Joanie and they were married in December of 1966. Upon discharge from the Air Force, they moved to Vaughn Bay and began construction on their waterfront Dream house. Ron worked for Sears in downtown Tacoma, was a volunteer firefighter and worked with the builder while doing half of the labor himself on their home construction. Both children were born during those years.
In 1974, Ron moved his family to Grandview where he purchased an insurance agency and became active in the community. Through the years, he was involved with the Grandview Chamber of Commerce, the Grandview Rotary Club, the Lower Valley Elks, the Bethany Presbyterian Church, the United Way, and the Kamiakin District of the Boy Scouts. He also supported his children’s activities by volunteering with the Grandview Band Boosters and the Grandview Swim Team Parents Club (representing that organization on the Mid-Valley Swim Leagues governing board). He was a faithful follower of his children’s sports, and their number one fan.
In 1982, Ron was elected President of the Grandview Rotary Club and attended the International Rotary Convention in Dallas. He continued serving on the Rotary Board for the next 23 years, and on most of the club’s committees. He was named a Paul Harris Fellow in appreciation of the significant contribution made to the goals of the organization and was recognized for 30 years of perfect attendance.
At the Bethany Presbyterian Church, Ron served several terms as elder/trustee, served on two pastor Nominating Committees, served several years on the Personnel Committee, operated the sound system, and frequently represented the church at the Presbytery level.
Ron’s hobbies included snowmobiling, camping, and boating. Ron fulfilled one of his lifelong dreams by purchasing a boat which he moored in Steilacoom, WA. He loved boating on the Puget Sound and spent many long weekends and vacations boating with family and his Tacoma Power Squadron friends.
Ron was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife, Joanie, of Grandview; daughter and son-in-law, Cheryl and Patrick, and grand-daughter Brinley, of Puyallup; and his son and daughter-in-law, Jeff and Nima, and grand-daughter Ellie, of Mercer Island; and his sister and brother-in-law, Carole and Zale (Woody) , of Puyallup; and his brother and sister-in-law, Gary and Sandra, of Chehalis, WA.
Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, June 2, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at the Bethany Community Church in Grandview, WA. Those wishing to sign Ron’s online memorial book may do so at www.funeralhomesmith.com. Smith Funeral Home in care of arrangements. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Bethany Community Church in Grandview (firstname.lastname@example.org) or to the Rotary Foundation (rotary.org).