Lynn Steven Beckhorn, husband and father, slipped the bonds of Earth on Nov. 2, 2020 at his home in Chimacum at the age of 73. He is survived by his wife of 37 years, Debbi, and his two sons, Cullen Beckhorn and Kyle Beckhorn, both of Bellingham, Washington.
Lynn was a rugged individualist, a true character who lived his whole life in pursuit of adventure — on land, on the sea, and in the air.
From the age of 3, when he caught sight of his first airplane, he knew with a passion that aviation would be his calling. He acquired his private pilot’s license on his 16th birthday and subsequently earned his commercial airplane rating at 18. Shortly thereafter, he was drafted into the U.S. Army where he served his country as a troop carrier and helicopter gunship pilot with the 119th Assault Helicopter Company in the highlands of Viet Nam from 1967-1968.
Following his tour of duty, he took a job as a crop-duster in Woodland, California and on the weekends, flew skydivers to altitude at a nearby airstrip in Yolo. Never one to stay rooted for long, Lynn moved to Alaska at the dawn of construction on the Valdez Oil Pipeline flying helicopters all over Alaska in many different capacities until the sea beckoned in 1979.
He then spent a year refurbishing and refitting an old 35-foot sailboat and left for warmer climes from Oxnard, California with a sextant, a timepiece and a sketchy understanding of celestial navigation. After three days at sea, he figured it out and spent the next two years sailing and exploring the island archipelagoes of the South Pacific.
After running out of everything but ideas in the Tuamotus, he sailed north to Kauai where it was rumored that jobs for helicopter pilots flying scenic tours could be had. There he met his wife, Debbi, and six years later in 1987 they set sail with their infant son, Cullen, for Alaska from Kauai, eventually ending up in Port Townsend on the day of the Kinetic Sculpture Race!
A move out to Chimacum followed where Lynn built a home on 5 acres off the Egg & I Road. He and Debbi raised their family and made a home for 32 years. In 2012, the aviation bug bit again and this time, Lynn built his own airplane, an experimental STOL aircraft meant for bush-flying — his specialty. He greatly enjoyed flying into back-country fishing holes and giving rides to anyone who wanted to experience what a small plane could offer. Up until a month before his death, he could be found at the Jefferson County International Airport regaling his friends with stories of adventure and discovery in days gone by. Heaven gained another star on Nov. 2. Shine on you crazy diamond, Lynn!
There will be no service, at Lynn’s request. The family asks that any monetary donations be made in Lynn’s name to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a cause very dear to his heart.