Alice Lorraine Michael (Olson)

October 29, 1933 - June 28, 2024

Alice Lorraine Michael (Olson)

October 29, 1933 - June 28, 2024

Obituary

Alice Lorraine Olson was born to George Ludvig Olson and Merle Clementine Johnson on October 29, 1933, in Portal, North Dakota. She was the second of six daughters. At a young age, Alice moved with her family to Everett, and then Lynden in the early 1940’s. Her father George was a border patrol officer on the Canadian border, and she adored him. George called her by the nickname “Oscar” and there are stories of him teaching her how to shoot a gun. The family eventually settled in Bellingham on Moore Street.

Alice attended Bellingham High School. In her junior year of high school, she was elected “What-a-Sho princess” where she caught the eye of Andy J. Vitaljic, and they started to date. Andy was a year older than Alice and was gone from High School by Alice’s senior year. With the blessings of their families, Alice and Andy married just a few days before Alice graduated in 1951 and right before Andy left for Alaska to go commercial fishing. They continued to live in Bellingham, mostly on 13th Street, but later lived on Everglade Road in Edgemoor.

In 1955, Alice’s parents moved her three younger sisters to Escondido, California. Her parents, George and Merle, kept the house on Moore Street, where for several years they would return in the summers to reunite with their growing extended family.  When her parents were still alive, there were several family reunions as well as trips with her sisters and their husbands to Hawaii, Mexico, and Palm Desert. She cherished those times with family and was very happy when her girls could join her on those trips.

By the time Alice was 26 years old she had three daughters, Karen, Susan and Linda. When asked what her life aspirations were, she often said “all I ever wanted to be was a mom.” Alice would always say she loved her girls “to the moon and back.” Throughout her life, Alice was active in her church, Our Savior’s Lutheran, and she raised her girls in the church as well. Alice’s hobbies were bridge, crossword puzzles, dance club, and reading, and she loved singing out loud to the radio. Her favorite singer was Johnny Mathis, and her daughters remember finding her working out to Jack LaLanne in the living room in front of a kitchen chair. She loved anything medical, including shows like Dr Welby and later ER. She was a Trekkie and loved Star Trek (she watched Next Generation but preferred the original).

On top of caring for her three daughters, Alice also had a variety of jobs throughout her life. She worked at Hillview Dairy as an ice cream server when she was young. As an adult she went to Bellingham Technical College to learn receptionist skills.  She then got a job working for Internist Dr. Kutnerian, as a receptionist in a three-doctor practice.  She later worked for Island Mariner Cruises as a secretary/scheduler and oftentimes went out on the islands during cruises, mostly to the picturesque resort of Rosario. When asked this year what her biggest accomplishment was, she said “her girls” adding: “and I loved every minute of it.” The last job she took was at Christ the King doing what she loved most: holding and caring for babies in the church nursery.

After her divorce in 1976, she met and married William Michael.  Bill was the father of six children (Bill Michael, David Michael, John Michael, Rose Falaniko, Elizabeth Buchman, Virginia Cubine) and eventually 20 grandchildren on the Michael side. Alice and Bill’s home in Redmond was always filled with family, stories, laughter, and food. They had an open-door policy and Bill loved to cook. There was always food being prepared at the Michaels – either to eat now or for an event later. There was always enough for everyone.

Alice and Bill enjoyed camping at Baker Lake, trips to the East Coast, Colorado, Alaska, Hawaii, Nevada and California. The image we girls will always have of our mom and Bill will be standing in their doorway waving goodbye to us as we left their home. Bill and Alice remained in their home until his passing in 2004 at which time Alice moved back to Bellingham to be close to her daughters and family.

Alice is survived by her younger four sisters, Dorothy Abbott of Bellingham; Carol Cooper (Howard) of Escondido, California; Linda Steege of Leesburg, Florida; and Judy Carle (Garth) of Prescott, Arizona. She is also survived by her three cherished daughters and their husbands, all in Bellingham. Karen Evich (Tom), Susan Springmeyer (Steve) and Linda Vitaljic (Mike Gruenheit). Step grandchildren: Tristan Springmeyer (Meghan), their sons Tommy and Rowen; and Dane Springmeyer (Alex) and their son Theo. Alice’s grandson Jordan Evich (Helena) of Washington, D.C., their son John Henry “Hank” and the newly born Eleanor May, who was on a plane coming to meet her great grandma when Alice peacefully passed away at her home at the age of 90. We are waving to you from our doorways, mom.

The daughters and their spouses want to extend a special heartfelt thank you to the women who cared for Alice this last year of her life, filling her with comfort, peace, joy and good food.  Tammy, MaryAnne, Amanda, Kylie, Brianna, Dana, and Josie; we will always be forever grateful.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to https://www.WomenSharingHope.org in Alice’s memory.

Funeral Service

  • Date & Time: July 12, 2024 (12:00 PM)
  • Venue: Moles Farewell Tributes – Bayview Chapel
  • Location: 2465 Lakeway Drive Bellingham, WA 98229 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (360) 733-0510

Celebration of Life

  • Date & Time: July 12, 2024 (1:00 PM)
  • Venue: Moles Farewell Tributes – Bayview Chapel
  • Location: 2465 Lakeway Drive Bellingham, WA 98229 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (360) 733-0510

Woman Sharing Hope

  • Address: PO Box 29598 Bellingham Wa, 98228 - (Get Directions)
  • Website: https://www.WomenSharingHope.org
  • Email Address: womensharinghopebellingham@gmail.com
  • Phone Number: (360) 305-0106
  • Description: Women Sharing Hope believes in providing a safe, inclusive and equitable environment for all people we serve. We seek to continue our learning and understanding in the promotion of social justice. We seek to create a culture that values and respects the differences in race, ethnicity, religion, age, and ability. We are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion.

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1 responses to Alice Lorraine Michael (Olson)

  1. Sorry to see your mother passed. She was a nice lady. Cary Daher. Big bad Joe’s wife, Bills nephew.

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