Monnie (Tougaw) Symonds went peacefully to be with her Lord on June 30, 2020. Born in Seattle in 1933, she grew up in Enumclaw. Her father, Sharon Tougaw, was a logger and an owner of the historic Enumclaw business Tougaw and Olson. Her mother, Mildred, was an elementary school teacher.
Monnie is survived by her husband of 66 years, Jim, and by five children, Sheri (Steve) of Edmonds WA, Jim of Tucson AZ, John (Tina) of Puyallup WA, Mike (Tameika) of Vail AZ, and Jeff (Lisa) of Anchorage AK. Dearly loved by her kids, they visited and called often. She is also survived by eight loving grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, and by her sister, Marjorie Caddey, her brother, Bill Tougaw, and many other relatives.
From Enumclaw High School, class of 1951, Monnie attended Stephens College in Missouri and the University of Washington. She married her high school sweetheart in 1953, and they lived a busy and adventurous life. While Jim was a Navy corpsman, they lived in Seattle, San Diego, Guantanamo Cuba, and Maryland. With three young children, in 1961 they returned to Seattle. Monnie earned her teaching degree in time to put Jim through medical school. After a year in California, they moved to Puyallup in 1968 and lived there for 32 years. In Puyallup, they raised their five children and Monnie was a second mother to several others, including German exchange student Huberta Schmitz. She also worked as Jim’s office manager for several years.
In 2000 Monnie and Jim returned to her childhood home in Enumclaw, with a view of her beloved Mt. Rainier, a large garden, and berry patches. She was a faithful water aerobics patron at the Enumclaw pool for many years, until she could no longer make the trip to the pool.
Monnie loved to travel. With family and friends, she saw a lot of the world. The family was a boating family for 30 years, and Monnie loved baking pies and brownies while cruising on the Morningstar, enjoying the San Juans and Canada, fishing, and kayaking. One of her favorite things for the past 25 years was to spend two weeks every winter in Kona, Hawaii, delighting in swimming (the fish envied her style), snorkeling, fishing, exploring, and even swimming with dolphins in the open ocean in her late seventies. A favorite trip was a 30-day cruise through the Panama Canal and 1,000 miles up the Amazon River to Manaus, Brazil.
A devoted member of PEO for over 40 years in Puyallup and Enumclaw, she wouldn’t miss a meeting when she was able to attend. She had many friends for life in both cities.
Calvary Presbyterian Church in Enumclaw was her sanctuary as a child, as a youth, as a bride, and again in her later years. Monnie’s greatest passion for the past 20 years was hiking every Wednesday, rain or shine, summer or winter, with the women’s hiking group from her church. Her favorites were the mountain hikes, especially on Mt. Rainier. The hikes were often arduous and lengthy, but her memories and the photos are proof of the joy she felt.
Monnie lived a full and rewarding life and had a peaceful, sweet goodbye.
A celebration of her life will be held when the pandemic permits.
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