QMCM RL “Beau” Beaucage 1941-2024

Robert Laurence Beaucage was born on October 1, 1941, in Portland, Oregon to John and Barbara (Pfund) Beaucage.  He passed away on May 3, 2024.

He spent his early years in Portland, Spokane, and Albany.  As a teen he worked in a store that was both a bicycle and hobby shop, here he was able to build a brand loyalty to Schwinn and foster a lifelong love of trains and model railroading.

Upon graduation he left to find his fortune in the United States Coast Guard.  His first orders were St Petersburg, Florida to the cutter Nemesis.  At a party he met the love of his life, Sandra Kay Slattery.  They were married and eventually welcomed their daughter Michele.

When Beau’s enlistment was up, he returned home to Albany, Oregon with his young family.  He found work at the local plywood plant.  During this time his son David was born.  Following a layoff at the plant he decided to return to the Coast Guard. 

His duties took him to Seattle (Icebreaker Northwind), Cape May, NJ (Tracen, Cutter Unimak), New London, CT (Cutter Vigorous) and, in 1974 back to Seattle (Puget Sound VTS, Icebreaker Polar Star and District 13 Search and Rescue). He retired from the Coast Guard in 1981.

Beau then worked briefly as a dock superintendent for Stevedoring Services of America.  It wasn’t really for him, but provided a foot in the door when an opportunity came to become a skipper for the motor yacht White Lightning.  He managed all business related to the upkeep and operation of several boats.  In 1997 the owners built and launched a larger White Lightning.  Beau traveled to New Zealand a few times to ensure everything was just right with the construction.  The owners treated Beau and Sandy like family, sometimes traveling together.  He retired from White Lightning in 2003.

Retirement allowed Beau plenty of time with the things he loved.  He would spend time in his shop woodworking or tinkering with old machines.  He restored an old railroad motorcar and a few antique hit and miss engines.  He had Scotties to walk and grandchildren to entertain.  One of his passions was volunteering at the Camp 6 Logging Museum at Point Defiance.  He would lend his talents to restoring some of the equipment, mentoring young train enthusiasts and driving the Shay locomotive during the summer and for the Santa train at Christmas.

After Sandy passed away in 2018, he would walk down the street to Lowman Beach Park and Lincoln Park, sometimes twice a day, developing close relationships with neighbors and those who came from all over West Seattle to walk and play.  Some of them visited regularly and he always had treats handy for their canine companions.

Beau is survived by his daughter Michele (Michael) Karnes, his son David (Carda) Beaucage and grandchildren Lauryn Karnes, Justin Beaucage, Kaitlyn Karnes and Shelby (Brett) Sheldon.

An open house gathering will be held Saturday, June 1, 2024, to celebrate Beau and share memories from 1-4 PM at his West Seattle residence.  Of course, dogs are welcome.