Kathryn (Kathy) Louise Hammond Cogswell passed away peacefully in Port Townsend, Wash., on Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2021. She squeezed in maximum mileage during her 77 years. Kathy’s journey began in Tucson, Ariz., born to Kathryn Louise and William Ira Hammond on May 28, 1943. She graduated from Tucson High, then attended University of Arizona, where she majored in English, and pledged Kappa Alpha Theta. During these years, Kathy modeled and served on the Queen’s Court in the 1963 El Paso Texas Sun Bowl.
That year, she began dating and soon married Jim Cogswell. They left Tucson for Denver, Colo., where daughters Carrie and Kathleen (Kat) were born. The family later returned to Denver after a two-year interlude in Port Hueneme, Calif. (where Kathy began the first U.S. Naval Base’s recycling program).
In 1973, the Cogswells, three pets, and a U-Haul full of plants landed in The Dalles, Ore., for Jim’s radiology practice. Kathy filled her decades in the Columbia River Gorge with deep friendships, family, and style. Kathy not only saw beauty in fine works of art, but also in patterns of leaves, pinecones, and stacked firewood. She and Jim designed and built “Quail Acre” at 1420 E. 16th St., then moved to “Larkspar Mountain” in Rowena, once the girls graduated high school.
Kathy impressed all she met with her intellect, wit and beauty — her uncanny ability to see and seek good in the world. A true Gemini, she fought fiercely to defend her truth and ideals. She saw the ludicrous in the mundane, sharing those insights with her infectious laugh. Generous to a fault, she gifted personal treasurers at the hint of need — leaving material items in her wake.
Kathy loved all animals and children. She served as one of the original “story ladies” at The Wasco County Library. She volunteered her vision and artistry to create extravagant sets for The Ballet House productions. Her grandchildren remember “Mamama” reading them her favorites (e.g., “The Snowy Day”), making turkey table settings for Thanksgiving, polishing nails, learning games, and solving puzzle challenges faster than they could invent them.
A student of the world, from 1996 on, Kathy’s wandering spirit carried her to Astoria, Ashland, Boston, Carmel, Camino Island, Santa Fe, Nordland and finally to Port Townsend, Wash. She devoured volumes — exploring philosophy, Christianity, art, and history — and could quote each at length after one reading. Her thirst for knowledge led her to Dartmouth College and Harvard University for courses in writing and design. She loved movies and musicals, and the spirit of Christmas the most.
Kathy ended her journey looking out over the Port Townsend Harbor and her beloved Puget Sound. She finally found the peace she always sought. Kathy will be close in the hearts of those who love her, despite the distance, just as always.
She is survived by one brother; daughters, Carrie and Kat; and four grandchildren. No service is scheduled. Please send memories and condolences to 1897 Riverview St, Eugene OR, 97403.
Donations in Kathy’s memory can be made to Friends of the Columbia River Gorge.