By Chris Tompkins
Dee Norton was a long time member of the Northshore chapter of Trout Unlimited. He served for 4 years as vice president and also was the conservation chairman for several years. Dee was also an active member of the state council as conservation chairman. Dee was an active conservationist; he believed that the fish must come first and strived to do what he could to protect salmon and steelhead. Dee and I toured Barr creek one morning after some recent flooding and decided together that the creek needed some serious help. With his help we put together a plan to restore the creek. I can remember the two of us wading around in high water trying to figure out where logs should go and how we could make the creek a better place for the fish. It was fun to work with Dee, he always had a lot of enthusiasm for the projects and he was willing to go the extra mile to help out. Even after his health began to fail Dee would do what he could to help out. His wife Jackie, and Dee, provided the meals of hot chili and goodies for our Barr creek work parties; they were a driving force to get our jobs done. Dee used to fish a lot in his early days of TU, but later I think he found more enjoyment in participating in the Kids fishing clinics and the projects at Barr creek. He loved the kid’s clinics; I think those events were the highlight of his TU experiences. Dee also helped the chapter toss salmon carcasses on the Skykomish tributaries on several occasions, a smelly job indeed. Dee helped to organize and get letters out about our fund raising banquets; his participation in the chapter was never ending. Dee also initiated a partnership with the Lake Forest Park stewardship foundations, he helped them to work on plans to restore Brookside creek. Dee was often very vocal in his ideas, he never hesitated to do a little arguing about issues that mattered to him, and he stood up for what he believed in. I respected his views; we often had the same vision about conservation of our fisheries. In Dee’s last few years he began to suffer from diabetes and Alzheimer’s and had trouble making the meetings on his own, but he wanted to come anyway, so TU member Larry Holley would pick him up at his home to bring him to the meetings, and I would take him back. Dee will not be forgotten in the Northshore chapter, we will miss his contributions and his spirit. I wish we had more members that would be as involved and motivated as Dee Norton was.
Dee at the 2008 Kids fishing clinic on Lake Washington
Dee working at Barr creek 03
Dee at Barr creek 04