I noticed this morning that the old Steilacoom Marina was destroyed by a fire yesterday. The building's demise was especially poignant for me, as I had kept my first boat there while living on one of the islands offshore, and I was one of the primary investigators of owner Paul Wang's murder back in the mid-80's. I could never visit the place without thinking how awful that winter day was, seeing Paul's body on the floor. Paul Wang was kind, generous, and friendly to all that stopped by the old marina. He didn't deserve to be brutally murdered by the two young teenagers who had decided to rob the marina store. I'll never forget how matter-of-fact the suspect that I interviewed was when he told me that they'd killed Paul so they couldn't be identified after the robbery. That was my first exposure to sociopathic behavior, and it chilled me to the bone. Those two murderers are still in prison, and with any luck will remain there until they die.
Paul's widow tried to keep the marina going, but faced an uphill battle. Maybe at long last the spirits that I always felt inhabited the place were released with the flames and smoke, and it can once again be a peaceful spot on the Puget Sound.
R.I.P., Paul...and my condolences to you, Shirley.