Nov. 12, 1954 - Feb. 27, 2011
Steven Lee Tomlinson, 56, passed away after a day of snowmobiling in the Cascade Mountains near Yakima on Feb. 27, 2011.
On Nov. 12, 1954, Steve was born to Gilbert and Jean Tomlinson in Walla Walla, Wash. He was saved and dedicated to our Lord and Savior at a very early age at Ingle Chapel Church in Milton-Freewater, where he attended while living on Stateline Road near Walla Walla. He graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1972. He was married to Sarita Mulhair on May 5, 1973. They had four children: Justin Todd, Alexis Rene, Ashley Nicole and Barret Reed.
He started working at age 12 for the family business, Tomlinson Dairy Farms, in Walla Walla. The dairy facility was moved to Pasco where they also started growing alfalfa and Steve implemented the use of the dairy waste water to irrigate the farm. In 1983, after the dairy was sold, he bought his own farm north of Pasco and continued farming there and with his parents on their land, and on leased land north of the Pasco airport. He continued to use his innovative techniques of waste water dispersal with the potato processing water from the Lamb-Weston plant. All of his children helped with the farming, especially at harvest time.
Steve married his childhood friend, Jan Marie (Waddoups) Prior on Aug. 26, 2000. Their families lived near each other and have been friends since Steve was 4 and Jan was 2. The two families spent a great deal of time together going to parades, cutting Christmas trees up in the mountains at Tollgate, and vacationing at Wallowa Lake. Sadly, Jan's family moved away when she was 8. The last time Steve and Jan spent together as children was when their families spent a weekend at the Tomlinson cabin at Tollgate. Thirty years passed before Steve and Jan met again and fell in love. In 2004, Steve and Jan established Steve Tomlinson Farms LLC and last year began, with his son, Barret, farming the entire operation.
In addition to his love of farming, Steve had many passions, especially snowmobiling. This humble, hard-working man of the highest integrity always put his family and friends first. He was a master mechanic, welder, electrician and plumber, and adept at fixing anything. Incredibly kind and generous, he was always willing to offer his help to others.
Steve is survived by his beloved wife, Jan, at home; his four children and their spouses, Justin (Amie) Tomlinson of Puyallup, Wash., Alexis (Brad) Davis of Pasco, Ashley (Brian) Edwards of Albion, Wash., and Barret Tomlinson, Pasco, Wash; six grandchildren, Lindsey, Maximus, and Peyton Tomlinson, Ashlyn and Ava Davis and Riley Edwards; his parents, Gilbert and Jean Tomlinson of Pasco; his sisters, Cynthia (Allen) Longest of Pasco and Kim (Richard) Ingersoll of Pasco; nephews, Nathan Arland and Tyler (Amber)Lyford; numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and in-laws; his former wife, Sarita Tomlinson, and a multitude of friends.
A viewing will be held Saturday, March 5, from 5-8 p.m. at Einan's Funeral Home, 915 Bypass Highway, Richland. The funeral will be held Sunday, March 6 at 1 p.m. at Memories at Sunset Event Center with a reception will follow.
We are blessed to have known the most thoughtful man that walked the earth.
Express your thoughts and memories in our online guestbook at www.einansfuneralhome.com