Friends, family mourn Bob Trask Sr.
Posted: Tuesday, Apr 13, 2010 - 04:06:01 pm PDT
By Lynne Lynch
Herald staff writer
MOSES LAKE — Moses Lake businessman Bob Trask Sr.’s biggest lifetime accomplishment was helping more than 400 children receive medical care at Shriner’s Hospital.
“That was pretty important to him,” said his son Bob Trask Jr., of Moses Lake, on Monday.
Trask Sr. died Wednesday due to complications from breaking his leg. He was 89.
Trask Jr. remembers his father assisting his best friend with admission into the Shriner’s Hospital in 1958.
From then on, his father helped hundreds of children receive medical care in Spokane because Moses Lake lacked a children’s hospital.
It was required they be sponsored by a Shriner to be admitted.
Trask Sr. was a Shriner through the Masonic Order.
“He loved youth and young people,” his son said. “He was young at heart. He always said, ‘Hang out with young people, stay young; hang out with old people, stay old’.”
He was also known for his business endeavors, opening the Basin Motor Hotel, an auto dealership, heavy equipment and construction operations, and an insurance agency.
His son now owns the insurance agency.
Opportunities resulting from the Columbia Basin Irrigation Project brought Trask Sr. and his wife, Dorothy, to Moses Lake, when the population was about 700.
They came from Boise, Idaho, in 1946 and witnessed improvements with irrigation’s arrival.
“He built a motel (in Moses Lake),” Trask Jr. recalled. “This community needed one.”
They met many people through the hotel, as their guests were oftentimes moving to Moses Lake.
Kent Jones, of Moses Lake, said he and his family stayed at the hotel.
The Trasks were also active in the community.
Trask Sr. and Dorothy served as advisors for Rainbow Girls and DeMolay Boys through the Masonic Order.
Trask Sr. served as president of the Moses Lake Chamber of Commerce, a founder of the Moses Lake golf course, the first library board and the first vice president of the Lions Club.
He was also a Moses Lake School Board member from 1955 to 1960.
“He was always proud of Moses Lake. He never spoke negatively of it,” Trask Jr. commented. “He was happy to see it grow and always felt quality growth would be a good thing.”
After Dorothy’s death in 1993, he lived on his own, cooking and cleaning for himself.
He cooked three meals a day and kept the house “as neat as a pin,” Trask Jr. said.
His father also spent his later years visiting the Moses Lake Senior Center to have coffee with the regulars.
One of coffee group members was Jerry Lester, of Moses Lake.
“We just thought he was going to live forever,” Lester said. “We were all in shock when we learned this happened. He had just been so healthy, laughing and having a good time.”
Lester knew Trask Sr. for 55 years because they lived in the Knolls Vista neighborhood.
In the past few years, they became closer. Lester visited the older man and gave him computer lessons.
Mike Conley, of Moses Lake, also visited with Trask Sr. over coffee.
Conley moved to Moses Lake in 1981 and says Trask Sr. was one of the first people he met.
Bob Fancher, of Moses Lake, met Trask Sr. in about 1975, while playing golf.
“We’ve been friends ever since, really good friends,” Fancher said. “When I first met him, my dad had just passed away. They were only two months apart in age. He just kind of filled the void Dad had left.”
Fancher also described him as a “real, real fun guy to be around, very amusing, never without a good story.”
His memorial service is set for 11 a.m., Saturday, at the First Presbyterian Church of Moses Lake, located at 1142 W. Ivy Ave.
For More Information go to the Columbia Herald at www.columbiabasinherald.com/articles/2010/04/13/news/doc4bc4efbcde7f4372138434.txt