Jay Murray (Jerry) Botkin, May 16, 1941-Sept. 19, 2023. Jerry, age 82, passed away at the home of his daughter, Ingrid Patterson, in Twisp, Washington, surrounded by family after a brief battle with glandular cancer.
He was born in Dunseith, North Dakota, to Murray R. Botkin and Margaret Wilson Botkin Moe on May 16, 1941. Jerry attended elementary school in Wayzata, Minnesota, and Independence, Missouri. His mother moved the family to Washington state in 1954 with a brief time in Moses Lake and Spokane, settling on Mercer Island in 1956.
Jerry graduated in the second Mercer Island High School graduating class of 1959 and studied at the University of Washington in pre-law and Norwegian, 1959-1961. Always an avid skier and mountain man, he went to Oslo, Norway, in 1961 to attend the university there and taught skiing to the native Norwegians at a local resort. He attended the 1960 Winter Olympics in Squaw Valley, California, and worked on the hill crew preparing the alpine skiing race courses.
Jerry’s life was one of travel and wilderness adventure. He and high school friend Gordon Rock made a dramatic 1964 kayak trip down Canada’s McKenzie River across the Great Slave Lake and out to the Artic Ocean, then up the Rat River, over the Continental Divide and down to Fort Yukon, Alaska. Gordon and Jerry covered 3,600 miles over 90 days. This journey was filmed by Gordon and Jerry and produced on Seattle’s KOMO TV program “I Search for Adventure.”
In 1973, Jerry and Gordon and five others took another wild adventure on ATVs following the WWII Canol oil pipeline constructed from Norman Wells, Northwest Territory to Whitehorse in the Yukon Territory. This adventure is available on YouTube (see Canol Pipeline).
Jerry was a creative business entrepreneur. In the 1960s and ’70s he helped pioneer food and fish conveying systems at Temco Inc. of Bellevue, Washington. In the 1980s he built and operated two fishing boats that operated off the West Coast and Alaska. In the 1990s he successfully developed two hydroelectric power plants on the Snoqualmie River — they continue to produce clean electricity to this day.
He married Anne McPhail Bird in 1964 while serving in the U.S. Army. Upon returning from Germany and discharge from the Army, Jerry and Anne built a home in Alpental at Snoqualmie Pass where they raised their two children Ingrid and Leif. After a divorce, Jerry married Linnet Dunden Thompson, his high school sweetheart, and moved to Wauconda, Washington.
Jerry is survived by his two ex-wives, his children Ingrid Botkin Patterson (Erik) and Leif Botkin, his sister Susan Botkin Blake and brothers Stephen Moe and Peter Moe (Mary Jo), cousin Ward Wilson and several nieces and nephews. He was proud of his grandchildren Eirik, Bergen, and Kai Patterson, and Morgan Patterson Diaz (Richard), and Rorik Botkin; and great-grandchildren Solomon and Kaemon Diaz.
A memorial honoring Jerry will be held Nov. 4, 2023, with a gathering at his home in Cle Elum, Washington. In lieu of flowers, memorials to Conservation Northwest, 1829 10th Ave. W. Suite B, Seattle, WA 98119, will be greatly appreciated by his family.