News Release 12-019
Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission
1111 Israel Road S.W., P.O. Box 42650, Olympia, WA 98504-2650, (360) 902-8500
Don Hoch, Director
Virginia Painter (360) 902-8562
Wash. Telecommunications Relay Service: (800) 833-6388
State Parks mourns loss of Ranger Johanson
Feb. 25, 2012 –
State Parks staff were notified late Friday of a fatal auto accident that involved a State Parks Ranger, Ed Johanson.
Johanson, 44, was off duty and driving home in his private vehicle at the time of the head-on collision in the Central Kitsap area, near where Johanson lived. The Kitsap County Sheriff’s office responded to the accident and indicated in a news release that the driver of the other car was being evaluated for narcotics and was taken into custody on investigation of vehicular homicide.
Johanson was a ranger for approximately 20 years, serving at Kitsap Memorial State Park near Seabeck until his recent assignment to Kanaskat Palmer State Park in the Green River Gorge area. Johanson was known for his enthusiasm and passion, someone who considered being a ranger as an identity rather than just a job, according to close co-workers.
"This is very sad. Ed will be sorely missed," said Don Hoch, agency director. "I had the opportunity to work with Ed on several projects. I know he enjoyed his career as a park ranger. He had a real passion for providing quality customer service and loved working with the public. Many will remember Ed, the pride he had in his work and his commitment to continuous improvement in parks and services."
Gov. Chris Gregoire also expressed her condolences.
"Like so many of our employees, Ranger Ed Johanson was the type who went above and beyond to make both our parks and our state a better place," said Gov. Gregoire. "A tireless advocate and innovator for our parks and a beloved community volunteer, his loss will be felt."