Gordon Harry Olson
August 18th, 1945 – January 29th, 2020
On January 29th Gordon Harry Olson left us in the early morning hours at home. He was preceded in death by his father Bertil Olson and mother Doris Johnson. He is survived by his wife Sherry Olson, sisters Linda Olive and Diane Shelley and brother’s Lee dePersla, Mark Olson, Bert Olson, Neil Olson and Jamie Olson and his daughter and son-in-law’s Heather & Kevin Smith, Theresa & Ken Marceron, Elizabeth Bumbesti and grandchildren Zachary, Alec, Michael, Taylor, Olivia, Jenny, Michael, Lea, Adrien and Roman and two great grandchildren Evelynne and Lewis. Gordon is also survived by Bertha the Bagger, one Dyna Glide and a 1955 Harley Davidson Pan head…..Gordon that was for you!
Gordon was a decorated Vietnam Veteran and a member of the 173rd Airborne. Although he was quiet about his service in Vietnam, he was proud to serve his Country. After returning from the Army, Gordon spent a lifetime traveling around the Country in search of the perfect ride ending up in Gold Hill, Oregon on a beautiful lake house surrounded by nature and the quietness of the mountains. In Gordon’s early days, he had a calling to the open road on the back of anything with two wheels. The images and posters scattered on the garage walls outline a life of solitude from the highway, and a bounty of friendships from along the way earning him the biker name “Tramp”. Gordon was one of the “Three Amigo’s” leftover from high school whose bond, even in death could never be broken. Some have mistaken them for brothers……to Gordon, that’ exactly what they were. Gordon had several careers, but his passion was motorcycles and people. He was the service manager for the Golden Gate Harley Davidson Dealership in Marin County, where his love for anything Harley Davidson only grew. He finished his career in what one may call the perfect job for Gordon. He was a park ranger in Zion National Park in Utah, spending his days talking to people from all around the world as they enjoyed the scenes of nature. Gordon was proud to wear the badge and guide families through their vacations as they drove their way through the park. Gordon could talk to anyone…and by the time the conversation ended, Gordon had managed to make a new friend. That was the part of Gordon’s personality that everyone whoever met Gordon fell in love with.
In 2007, Gordon found his soulmate. Sherry’s daughter Lizzy walked into a Harley dealership looking to find someone to give her mother her first experience on a motorcycle. Gordon was the lucky one standing behind the counter. After the motorcycle ride, the beginning of a storybook relationship was formed and they would soon be married in front of their friends and family. They soon moved from California to Utah, along with Sherry’s mother and spent years enjoying the mountains and the views from their new home. Collecting motorcycles and raising a host pets kept them busy. The trio was inseparable until Mary passed in 2013. On a whim, Gordon and Sherry picked up and headed north to Oregon. The next chapter of their lives would be set on a few acres of land, surrounded by the mountains and lakeside full of neighbors who would soon all become the best of friends.
Gordon’s relationship with his daughter Heather was a story one could only imagine. Although they were separated by thousands of miles, what was once a distant relationship could be measured by the smile on Gordon’s face when Heather came to visit them in Utah and Oregon. Watching them sit alone by the lakeside arguing about what to put on a Swedish pancake could only make you smile. It was as if they had never been apart.
Gordon has a wonderful soul, measured by friendships and family. He will forever be missed!
In lieu of flowers, feel free to make a donation to Gordon’s favorite charity St. Jude’s Hospital.
To plant a tree in memory of Gordon Harry Olson, please visit our tribute store.