Judy Norris
Judy Norris
Judy Norris
Judy Norris
Judy Norris
Judy Norris

Obituary of Judy Lee (Karnowsky) Norris

Judy Lee (Karnowsky) Norris passed away January 7, 2024, in Olympia, Washington, due to complications from acute myeloid leukemia.  She was born June 18, 1943, to Albert Charles Karnowsky and Mayme Leone Karnowsky in Aberdeen, Washington.  A four-and-a-half year resident of Olympia, she also lived in Ocean Shores, Washington (2005-2019), and Vancouver, Washington (1988-2005).


The Karnowsky family lived in Westport, Washington, until Judy turned eight years old.  Her father was a commercial fisherman and the family relocated to Newport, Oregon, as he expanded his fishing business.  As a young girl, Judy frequently accompanied her father on his boat, the Mayme, on 10-day fishing trips off the coast of Oregon and Washington.  It was during those adventures that Judy developed her life-long love of all things nautical.


Professionally, she was a Real Estate Office Manager and entrepreneur.  Judy owned a custom upholstery shop and, as a master upholsterer, she beautifully restored classic/antique furniture. 


Judy nurtured and supported many beloved life-long friendships.  She had a keen mind, razor sharp wit with a great sense of (irreverent) humor; she shared lots of laughs with many favorite family jokes.  She enjoyed playing cards (excellent at pinochle) and marbles and wasn’t always the best loser! 


Judy didn’t consider herself a true chef, yet she created and shared many incredible recipes that people loved, including her secret-recipe chocolate fudge that she shared with family and friends every Christmas (her favorite holiday).  She enjoyed selecting and giving special, meaningful gifts throughout the year.  She was always well dressed with impeccable taste, and LOVED catalog shopping, receiving dozens of mail-order catalogs every week.  She also had a keen eye for finding thrift store and garage sale treasures, amassing a beautiful jewelry collection, including natural stone rings.


Judy was an avid equestrian and Schipperke enthusiast who was a loving pet parent to many generations of horses, dogs, cats, birds, and cows. She was an active beachcomber and avid genealogist, researching her paternal family’s homesteading of the central Oregon coast. 


Judy possessed an indomitable spirit and will power.  At 73 years of age, she survived an accident that resulted in a life-altering traumatic brain injury.  She did more than just recover.  Despite physical and mobility challenges, she thrived while facing every day with courage, fortitude, and resilience.  Her desire to live a meaningful life was only reinforced when she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia days before her 77th birthday.  Her cancer treatment journey was difficult in many ways, but Judy’s love of family, friends, and life itself carried her through.  Judy was and remains an inspiration in every way, and she will always be loved and cherished.


She is survived by her husband, Jerome “Bud” Norris Sr.; son, Adam Norris of Olympia; stepsons, Richard Norris of Portland, Oregon, and Jerome “Jerry” Norris Jr. of California; daughters, Anne Clem of Bryan, Texas and Brenda Mottner of Roy, Washington, stepdaughter, Elizabeth Sparks of Gresham, Oregon; niece, Samantha (Karnowsky) Rosati of Hawaii; eight grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.  She was predeceased by her father, Albert C. Karnowsky; mother, Mayme L. Karnowsky; and brother, Richard A. Karnowsky.


Family and friends will join together to scatter Judy’s ashes on Willapa Bay, on the Central Washington coast, on Tuesday, June 18, 2024.


Memorial donations may be made to the Schipperke Rescue Organization (SchipperkeRescue.net) or the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS.org).


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