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Obituary: Robert E. "Hook" Russell

Robert E. "Hook" Russell died May 7 at U.C. Davis Medical Center in Sacramento. He was 64 years old.

He was born April 19, 1943 to Robert and Lillian Russell in Crescent City.

He was a long-time resident of Crescent City, and attended Del Norte High School, graduating in 1961.

He began commercial fishing when he was a teenager, acquiring his nickname of Hook.

He married Sondra Schneider Sept. 14, 1962, and continued to fish commercially to support his family. He then bought the fishing vessel Space Ship, and moved his family in 1979 to Cordova, Alaska. He fished out of Dutch Harbor in the Bering Sea for about five years, then returned in 1996 to Crescent City.

When he was 53, he completed correctional training and became a Correctional Officer. He retired from Pelican Bay State Prison in 2006.

He loved life to the fullest, enjoyed cooking, hunting, traveling and golfing. Above all he loved his family.

His accomplishments include work on the Pit River Dams in the Big Bend and Redding areas, working as a logger, miner, carpenter, butcher and a local business owner.

In his later life, he made and sold original, hand-crafted wood items.

He was preceded in death by his father, Robert E. Russell, Sr.

He is survived by his wife of 44 years, Sondra; his children, son Richard Russell (Melinda); daughter, Barbara Maple (Carl), his mother, Lillian Russell, his sister, Jacqueline Rose (Dennis); grandchildren, Robert, Nicole, Tiffany and Roxanne Maple, Strand Hill-Russell, Kai Russell and Bella Sarah, and numerous other close family members.

A celebration of his life was held May 12 in Fort Dick.


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