Carl David Sidle

September 25, 1934 - February 28, 2021


Carl David Sidle of Port Townsend, Washington passed away peacefully in his home on Feb. 28, 2021, at the age of 86.

Carl was born Sept. 25, 1934 in Hatboro, Pennsylvania to William and Miriam (Bradley) Sidle.

When he was 17, he met the love of his life, Susan Brunner, at a summer Unitarian church camp. They were married Sept.1, 1956, at the beginning of his senior year at the University of Virginia.

After Carl graduated with a degree in electrical engineering, he and Sue drove across the country on Route 66 to begin his career in Pasadena, California. He worked for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for a number of years and then moved to Electro Optical Systems, where he was a lead engineer on defense industry projects.

Carl and Sue settled in Sierra Madre, Calif., and raised three children — David, Ellen and Catherine — plus three dogs, several cats, and a guinea pig.

On any weekend that was open, Carl would head to San Pedro Harbor with the family and pursue his passion: sailing. He was a past member and Commodore of the Buccaneer Yacht Club and participated — with Sue and the children as his crew — in races around Los Angeles Harbor and cruises to Catalina Island and Ensenada, Mexico.

Carl’s passion for the ocean and Sue’s love of the mountains led to many family camping trips up the Pacific Coast in the station wagon, with a dinghy strapped on top. They fell in love with the Pacific Northwest and on one of those trips discovered Port Townsend.

In 1979 after an early retirement, Carl and Sue left Southern California to build a new life in Port Townsend. They embraced their new community, joining the PT Yacht Club where Carl served as Commodore. Over the years they traded in their sailboat for a power boat and Carl fulfilled his lifelong goal of cruising to Alaska several times. He was happiest when he was out on the water in his boat, the Shoshanna.

Carl had many skills and talents. He started building and repairing radios as a boy and continued throughout his life, giving numerous vacuum-tube cabinet radios a second life. His carpentry work was detailed and beautiful. He built several houses in Port Townsend and crafted furniture, light fixtures, custom doors and built-in cabinetry. And during his lifetime, he never encountered a motor that he could not repair, be it appliance, auto, or marine.

Carl is survived by his wife Susan Brunner Sidle; his children David and Becky (Houghton) Sidle, Ellen and Brent Rutemiller, Catherine and Erik Udd; grandchildren Moira Sidle, T.C. Rutemiller, Shoshanna (and Khalid) Cortes, Richard Rutemiller, Alexandra Udd, Bryce Udd; three great-grandchildren; sisters Nancy Brett, Madeline Keesing, Janet Thomas; nieces and nephews; great nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at a later date. If you wish to honor Carl’s memory, please consider donating to the Port Townsend Yacht Club Scholarship fund (