Edmonds man who tried to save father says he was ‘my best friend’

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Frank Dold Sr.

The son of an Edmonds man who died after diving at the Edmonds Underwater Park last Saturday said that he and his father  were doing practice dives in preparation for harvesting geoducks in Hood Canal when his father became unconscious last Saturday.

Frank Dold Jr. , 36, performed CPR on his father, 56-year-old Frank Dold, and CPR was continued by paramedics at Brackett’s Landing beach. Despite these heroic efforts, the older Dold could not be revived.

The younger Dold said that his father had just turned in his retirement papers at Gai’s Bakery in Seattle, and was looking forward to enjoying “all the things he had always wanted to do,” including scuba diving. Frank Dold Jr. said his father was two weeks from retirement when Saturday’s tragedy occurred, and noted that he had waited an extra year to retire to ensure that two of his children had health insurance.

A Hungarian refugee who came to the United States as a child in 1956, Mr. Dold lived in Edmonds with his wife Patty and his son Steven, 21, a cinematographer. In addition to his wife and two sons, Mr. Dold is survived by two daughters — Jessica of Moses Lake and Melissa of Mountlake Terrace; two grandchildren, Claire and Jordan; plus other relatives in Edmonds and Shoreline and many family members in Hungary.

According to his son, Mr. Dold was employed in Alaska as a commercial fishermen until the early 1980s, when he went to work at Gai’s Bakery. Mr. Dold had two children — Frank Jr. and Melissa — with his former wife, Jolynn, while Steven and Jessica were born after his marriage to Patty. “My father loved to fish and take his grandkids fishing,” the younger Dold said. Among Mr. Dold’s other passions were gardening and panning for gold. “He was always thinking about striking the mother lode,” Dold said.

In addition,  Mr. Dold was the first private citizen to have a government geothermal lease on Mount Baker, his son said. “He had the idea of making geothermal generators and using the access water for bottling. Of course, people thought he was crazy someone would pay 50 cents for a bottle of water.”

The younger Dold said that at the time of his father’s death, the two of them were in the process of buying a hand trolling boat in Petersburg, Alaska, “because we both had a passion to work together, no stress — just fun”

“I will miss my dad more than anything,” he said. “He wasn’t just my dad but my best friend.”

Frank Dold Jr. is also asking for the public’s help in finding the disposable underwater camera that his father was wearing on his wrist during the dive. “Neither the medical examiner nor the police department have the camera in evidence, so it is possible it was lost or forgotten during the commotion,” he said. “This camera means a great deal to me and my family, it was the last moments I had with my father,” he said.

If you found the camera or have additional information, please contact the Edmonds Police Department.

7 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you for the wonderful article about Frank Dold. He was my ex-husband and good friend. Our son presented him as the good, kind man that he was. Thanks for letting others know about him!

  2. A very sad story and my heartfelt condolences to the Dold family.

    Also: “The son of an Edmonds man who died after diving at the Edmonds Underwater Park last Saturday said that he and his father were doing practice dives in preparation for harvesting geoducks in Hood Canal when his father became unconscious last Saturday.” might be better phrased thusly: “An Edmonds man perished in a diving accident last Saturday at Edmonds Underwater Park. The victim’s son, who was diving with him at the time of the accident, indicated that his father became unconscious while they were performing practice dives in preparation for harvesting Hood Canal geoducks.”

  3. Frank Dold Sr. was a gentle and loving person. His family can be very proud of the footprint he leaves behind. Our love and sincere thoughts to all of his family.

  4. When Frank Jr was a toddler he and his family were visiting us. Franky was on our upper porch deck and Frank Sr. and I were walking below. All of a sudden Franky stepped through the slats and fell! Frank Sr. caught him before he could hit the ground. He possibly saved his sons death that day! Frank was a good friend for many years. He will be missed!

  5. “I’m gonna go, and I’m gonna drill,” said Frank when he was talking about Mount Baker and how geothermal energy was going to change the world. I met Frank in the early eighties on a crab processing boat (the F/V Allutian Monarch) in Beaver Inlet, Unalaska. Later we worked and shared the Berring Sea together on the Royal Venture. A hard-working man with an adventurious spirit, Frank was never afraid to take a risk. He always had a sparkle in his handsome hazel eyes, and he said the ladies called him “Redford” when he was young. He loved his children and living life to it’s fullest. Once he called me long distance (back when it was expensive) and I didn’t hang up the phone like I thought I did. It was connected for four hours. A $60.00 phone bill. Sorry Frank. I’ll always remember Frank with his rubber fishing boots, yellow rain gear, and rust-colored watchcap working across the processing belt packing crab and winking at me and any other girl who caught his eye. He was always a gentleman and will always be a part of my life.

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