Washougal man dies in motorcycle crash

John Hess, 64, remembered as ‘selfless, respected’

A 64-year-old Washougal man died in a motorcycle crash in eastern Washington on Aug. 10.

John Hess was riding a motorcycle on Highway 12 near Pomeroy, Washington, when he left the roadway and crashed into a ditch, according to the Washington State Patrol. He was taken to Garfield County Memorial Hospital, where he died.

“If anyone knows and/or is close to him, you know exactly what kind of man he was and always will be,” Kayte Hess, John’s daughter, wrote in an Aug. 12 Facebook post. “All I can say at this very moment is hold your loved ones close to you and realize that life is too short to choose not to live it to the fullest. My father was always so great about knowing what that meant, and it’s time that people really try to understand what it means to do this.”

Hess served for more than 35 years with the Washington State Patrol (WSP) as a trooper and evidence custodian.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Laurrie, his daughter, Kayte, and the rest of the family, his friends, immediate coworkers, as we all process the loss of a wonderful father, husband, friend and member of our WSP family,” WSP Chief John Batiste told The Columbian, the Post-Record’s sister paper. “John was a selfless person and a great employee, loved and respected by all. We hold his memory and his family close to our hearts in this painfully sad time.”

The WSP is investigating the crash. It said Hess was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.

“I have heard nothing but praises for his service and sorrows for his loss since we got the bad news,” WSP communications director Chris Loftis told the Post-Record.

A GoFundMe account has been established to raise money for Hess’ funeral and other associated costs.

“This loss is felt immensely by all that were lucky enough to have had the opportunity to know him,” fundraiser organizer Melissa Stadefer wrote online.