TENINO — Mark Lawton Doumit passed away at his home in Tenino, Wash., on June 21, 2021 following a sudden heart attack. He was 59 years old.
Mark was born in Longview, Wash., on November 26, 1961, to Eli and Patricia Doumit and was the 10th of 11th children. He grew up in his family’s hometown of Cathlamet, Wash., and graduated from Wahkiakum High School in 1980 where he was active in FFA, baseball, and wrestling. Following high school, he attended Lower Columbia College in Longview and later transferred and graduated from Washington State University in 1984 with a bachelor’s degree in International business.
While still in high school, Mark began a lifelong passion for commercial fishing. He began his career in the industry in high school, working on the Columbia River as a fish buyer. In college he began a nearly 40-year career in Alaska working in canneries and crewing on drift gillnet boats in Prince William Sound and Bristol Bay. Mark bought his own commercial salmon fishing operation in Cook Inlet, Alaska in 1986 and spent the remainder of his fishing career between Cook Inlet in the summer and lower Columbia River in the spring and fall. One of his great joys in life was the opportunity to fish alongside his sons and so many of his family and friends.
In 1989, Mark began a second career in public service by getting elected to the Wahkiakum County Commission and served for eight years. He was elected to the Washington State House of Representatives for the 19th District in 1996 and served in the House until he was appointed to the Washington State Senate in 2002 to replace his friend and mentor Sid Snyder. Mark served in the Senate until 2006 when he left the legislature to become the Executive Director of the Washington Forest Protection Association, advocating for healthy working forests until his death. Throughout his political career, Mark was known as a hard-working, straight shooting, and dedicated advocate on behalf of Southwest Washington and natural resources communities. Even though he was elected as a Democrat, he was respected on both sides of the aisle and was well known around Olympia as someone who could bring opposing sides together on state budgets, Washington’s seminal Forests & Fish Law, and many other important issues. His leadership will be greatly missed.
At every stage of Mark’s life he managed to pick up and retain a large network of friends through his honesty, integrity, and the joy he brought to life. He was a dedicated family man to a large extended family, and loved nothing more than hosting get-togethers with family, friends, and colleagues where he could talk, laugh, and share stories. He was always known as someone who could be counted on to help a friend in need. This tendency for service was also exemplified by his long service as a volunteer firefighter and EMT with the Cathlamet Fire Department. In 1987, he married the love of his life, Mindy O’Neal, and they made their home in Cathlamet where they raised their three sons. Even after relocating to the Puget Sound region, he always considered Southwest Washington his home and continued to maintain a family tree farm in Cathlamet upon his death.
Mark is survived by his wife of nearly 34 years Mindy; his three sons Matthew (Denise), Benjamin (Charleeann), and David (fiancé Molli); and his three beloved grandchildren Huntleigh, Eliana, and Hudson; as well as seven brothers and sisters and a long list of extended family and friends that love and miss him dearly.
There will be a Catholic funeral mass held for Mark at St. Rose Catholic Church in Longview on June 29th at 10 a.m. (Rosary preceding mass at 9:30) for family and close friends, followed by a reception at the Cathlamet Fire Department at 1 to 4 p.m. The Doumit family encourages the public to attend a memorial on July 13th at Wilcox Family Farms, 40400 Harts Lake Valley Rd, in Roy, WA. In lieu of flowers, the Doumit family asks that you consider sending a donation in Mark’s name to the Cathlamet Firefighters Association (PO Box 539, Cathlamet, WA 98612) and/or Cathlamet FFA (500 3rd Street, Cathlamet, WA 98612).