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Northwest Trek’s deputy director dies on park’s anniversary

Post by Stacia Glenn / The News Tribune on July 19, 2012 at 8:26 am with 4 Comments »
July 19, 2012 8:33 am

The man who led Northwest Trek for nearly three decades died Tuesday on the wildlife park’s 37th anniversary.

Dave Ellis was 65. His cause of death has not been released.

He is remembered as a dedicated wildlife advocate who worked tirelessly to improve the 723-acre park and the experience for all those who visited.

“Every day, he managed the protection of Northwest Trek and the concept of what it was established to be,” said Gary Geddes, director of the Zoological and Environmental Division of Metro Parks Tacoma. “He was unwavering in that commitment.”

Ellis was hired as general curator and became deputy director in 2000.

Under his leadership, Northwest Trek added at least 10 new exhibits or features. He is also credited with helping the park earn its first accreditation in 1985 and starting a recovery project for the Oregon Spotted Frog, an endangered species.

He lived with his wife, Nancy, in Eatonville and served on the Eatonville Town Council for several years.

Ellis was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed fishing, skiing and hiking.

Leave a comment Comments → 4
  1. nwcolorist says:

    I’m sorry to hear it. Sixty-five is too young to go.

    What a wonderful legacy he has left us.

  2. BlaineCGarver says:
  3. skippythedog says:

    Well, one would guess that if he had to pick any day to die, this would be it.
    On the other hand, the witholding of the cause of his death unfortunately leads one to believe that he did indeed pick this day.

  4. Lizinwa88 says:


    If one doesn’t have all the information one should not cast assumptions or surmise things. The fact of the matter is that they were trying to find out the cause of death but for
    You to imply that he did this to himself without knowing him is just poor judgement on your part. Please before posting things think of the family and friends that are trying to cope with this amazing man’s passing. How would you feel if you read what you posted about someone you knew and cared for?

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