Olson, David [Oley]

Dr Bugbee’s Field Ornithology class in the spring of 1967, I am still a birder. Worst memory(regret): Cutting his class the day they went to Presque Isle to see the Warbler migration. (Decided to sleep in)

Education after Allegheny

After a less than stellar tour in the Navy where I was an engineering officer on a ship, I attended the SUNY Buffalo to study engineering.


I had a friend who was a Lutheran pastor tell me if I wanted to meet women – forget the bars and come to his church. He was right. It was there I met my wife. The best thing that happened to me. She had a long career as a hospital chaplain. I needed both a wife & a chaplain and she needed a project. We have been together now for 39 wonderful years.

Where I’ve lived

After having a wretched time in Buffalo. I sold what was left of my car, bought a train ticket on the Canadian National RR and headed west. I settled in WA state. My wife, Kathy, and I bought a bungalow in Tacoma in 1978 and we are still there.

My jobs

Most of my jobs have been in engineering and project management. My work took me to Thailand, Eastern Turkey and remote Alaska. The biggest and most challenging project I managed was a ship building project for the Royal Thai Navy.

In 2000 the company I worked for folded its tent and I experienced the joys of being an unemployed, middle aged, middle manager. I started substituting in the local school district and in 2003 received my teaching cert. I was a math teacher and swim coach. At the end of my career I taught in an alternative high school for kids who weren’t cutting it in regular school. I loved it and felt that this was probably the most rewarding part of my work life. I still substitute teach- mostly because I like being with kids.

Our children / grandchildren

We have two sons and a 3 yr. old grandson plus another in the oven.


I have been blessed with good health and intend to stay active for as long as my body will let me. I have done a few long distance bike trips – a great way to see the country but way too much work. I swim for a geezers swim team at the local Y and am developing a course for adults to overcome their fear of water. I am also working with the parks department to start a kids swim team in the inner city of Tacoma. I have always loved the Mountains and have hiked, backpacked and climbed them ever since I settled in Tacoma. My boys still drag the old man out for a backpack or two- usually when the weather is at its worst. I occasionally work repairing trails. and am now taking flying trapeze lesson.

My contact Info

Address:  2415 North Lawrence, Tacoma, WA 98406-6125
Phone:  253-752-5533

Freshman Book

Looking for Schultz and Dooley in Utica NY Keg party favorites 


Flying trapeze lesson


Family at my sons wedding


Backpacking in the Goat Rock Wilderness with my boys and grandson

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