Frederick Van Ronk

July 29, 1942 - October 19, 2020 - Spokane Valley, Washington

Frederick Gilmour Van Ronk, 78, passed away on Monday, October 19, 2020, in Spokane Valley, Washington. Fred was born to Charles Alonzo and Ziritia Maud (Day) Van Ronk in Provo, Utah, on July 29, 1942.

After attending all 12-years at Bridgeport schools, he followed with four-years in the United States Army and is said to have traveled in 17 countries and learned to speak German. He was very proud of his education at Washington State University, where he earned his Master’s Degree in Archaeology and Horticulture.

Fred worked as a millwright at Boise Cascade, was then the owner of Trilby’s Nursery in Burbank, Washington. One of his hobbies was collecting various arrowheads and other pieces of history. Fred started picking up arrowheads and other Native American artifacts when he was seven years old. More than 60 years later, it was obvious his passion for collecting had continued when he and Janet built a private museum --the Columbia River Museum-- in the lower level of their home in Kalama, Washington. He thoroughly enjoyed working with his flowers and plants.

Fred was preceded in death by his wife, Janet Spuck. He is survived by his daughters, Lorey Meyers of Richland, Washington; Elizabeth (Michael) Gibson of Albuquerque, New Mexico; Kim Cochran of Spokane, Washington; Christine (Rob) Johnson of Spokane, Washington; and Cheryl Van Ronk of Spokane, Washington; eight grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

A graveside service with military honors was held at 1 p.m. on Monday, October 26, 2020, at the Prosser Cemetery, 1601 Paterson Rd, Prosser, WA 99350. Please share your memories of Fred on his Tribute Wall at


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