On Monday, February 3, 2020, Kirk Lee Pool passed away peacefully with his family by his side. Born January 23, 1944, in Pocatello, to James Lee Pool & Josephine Aldous, he was the oldest of four children.
As young children, they lived in several states before returning back to Pocatello in 1959.
Kirk graduated Pocatello High School Class of 1963 and attended Idaho State University. He was involved with Professor Earl Swanson of the Anthropology Department. He went on numerous digs, from the North Fork to Shoup, on the Salmon River. His enthusiasm and love for historical artifacts continued throughout his life. His keen eyes were always searching for a new treasure to display in his vast collection. He eventually displayed many these in his Buffalo Room, in Downey, ID.
In 1966, he married Lanna Mills and adopted Lanna’s daughter, Michelle. Together they had one son, James Kirkpatrick.
In 1969, Kirk moved his young family to Seattle, where he began his life long career as a Glazier. One of his highlights was installing the huge windows in the SeaTac Airport.
Returning to Pocatello in 1976, Kirk continued working as a glazier, at Yellowstone Glass, John’s Paint & Glass, and Precision Glass, until his retirement in 2009, installing residential glass and many, many commercial buildings in Pocatello, including the big Farm Bureau Insurance office.
Eventually, they moved to Downey, Idaho, where Kirk’s ancestors had settled, Cambridge & Downey, in the late 1840’s.
Together they restored the old Highway Motel, making it a single-family dwelling. Kirk & Lana were well known for their love of antiques and restored many unique pieces, winning numerous blue ribbons and awards at the Bannock County and Blackfoot State Fairs.
Around that time, the family started their tradition of “Buffalo Wallow” pig roasts and shindigs. Friends and family talked about it for years to come! Kirk and Lanna eventually went their separate ways after 32 years of marriage.
In 1998, Kirk met Vickie Wolter King, and they happily joined families at the Downey property on July, 15, 2000. The ceremony almost didn’t happen because the Pastor had his dates wrong; luckily, Kirk’s father Jim Pool, was happy to officiate. Kirk welcomed Vickie’s two children, Jesse Rae King and Sadie Lu King Cooke, into his heart. The tradition of family memories continued over the years, as they blended families, adding many grandchildren and great children. It was always an adventure to visit “Grandpa Downey”. All the children in Kirk’s family share in the memories of playing in the original “Playhouse,” later known as the “Castle”, the Tee-Pee, roasting marshmallows around the fire pit, going on four-wheeler rides, and especially swimming at Downata Hot Springs. “Granpee Kirk and Grandma Vickie’s was a destination for happiness for many years to come.
Kirk and Vickie shared the love of traveling and enjoyed cruises to the Caribbean and Alaska. One especially fond vacation memory was with Jesse’s family in Carpentaria, California in 2010. Kirk’s love of archeology took them on many traveling adventures over the years to Mesa Verde’, Chaco Canyon, and The Grand Canyon. The two also shared a passion for Jazz basketball, attending many games to cheer on their favorite team, The Utah Jazz! They loved attending music concerts; a couple of favorites were Elton John and The Rolling Stones. You could also find them in the front row seats to support their grandchildren every chance they got.
With Kirk’s long white beard and rotund belly that shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly, he made a perfect Santa Claus. Kirk was always a man of few words, and in the beginning, he was shy until he really got into the character. He and Vickie became Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus, and they were popular during the Christmas season, making appearances in homes, assisted living centers, churches, and business throughout the valley.
One especially fun memory was riding in the Downey Fire truck the night of the lighting of the town Christmas tree, with Santa arriving to kick-off the joyous season.
Kirk had many passions, including hunting, fishing, and riding horseback in the mountains near Downey. He loved to take his kids and grandkids on rides, and he would always be the first to spot wildlife. His patience and intuition were a gift that paid off in many ways, especially when it came to fishing and spotting game. He also could never pass up a museum and is well known for driving hundreds of miles to visit one! His favorite was anything connected to Lewis and Clark.
Kirk always had an interest in woodworking, so once he finally had the time to devote to it during his retirement, it truly became his passion. He would spend many of his retirement years in his shop, turning wood on his lathe. Eventually, Kirk’s masterpieces would become more than a hobby and “Buffalo Turning” was created to showcase his talents.
In March of 2017, Kirk suffered his first stroke, the home in Downey was sold, and they moved to Pocatello to be closer to their family, including his sister, Tina and his younger brother, Patrick. The memories would continue at the Cedars Pool house, where Kirk celebrated his 75th birthday with many of his friends and family, and at that celebration was his lifelong friend Wayne Newbold.
Kirk is survived by wife, Vickie Marie of Pocatello, ID; daughter, Michelle (Stuart Pickell) of Lolo, MT; son, James Kirkpatrick of Lolo, MT; step-son, Jesse Rae (Elysha) King, of Inkom, ID; step-daughter, Sadie Lu King (Marty Cooke) of Pocatello, ID; sister, Tina (Walt Gaved), Pocatello, ID; brother, Patrick (Lydie), Pocatello, ID; many grandchildren, great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews; and his faithful canine companion, Esther Lu Pool; who has an uncanny resemblance of Kirk himself. Kirk loved all of his family passionately!
He is preceded in death by his parents, James Lee and Josephine; and his brother, Rick Q.
A viewing will be held on Friday, February 7, 2020 from 5-7 pm at Colonial Funeral Home, 2005 S. 4th Ave. Pocatello, ID.
Services will be on Saturday, February 8, 2020 at 11 am also at Colonial Funeral Home with a viewing for one hour prior to the services.
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