Life Story for
Doug Abromeit, 65, died suddenly from natural causes on May 19, 2013, while doing what he loved—playing hard in the mountains with friends. Edward Douglas Abromeit is survived by his loving wife Janet, who he met in his hometown of Sandpoint, Idaho, and with whom he was married for 39 years. Doug’s distinguished career as a public servant culminated in establishing the USFS National Avalanche Center, from which he retired in 2011.
Doug developed his love of the outdoors with his family in north Idaho. He graduated from the University of Idaho with degrees in English and Education. He started his travels and career as a firefighter in Yellowstone.
With Janet, Doug lived in Sandpoint and McCall, Idaho; Nuiqsut, Alaska; Alta and Salt Lake City, Utah; and since 1994, Hailey, Idaho. Doug worked as a schoolteacher, smoke jumper, writer-editor and snow ranger. He made lasting and essential contributions to snow and avalanche education, forecasting and research. In each place and job, Doug made lifelong friends with whom he shared countless adventures skiing, climbing, paddling and biking. His community service included serving on the board of the Idaho Conservation League and leading Citizens for Smart Growth.
In addition to wife Janet, Doug leaves behind his mother Betty, brother Duane (Shannon), and an extended family that he cherished. It includes his in-laws Esther Surber, Shirley (Don) Moore and Mark (Bonnie) Surber; nieces Erin (Mike) Bass and Sarah Moore; nephews John (Dierdra) Abromeit, Steve (Cindy) Moore, Andrew Moore, and Alex and Nick Surber; and great-nieces and nephews Alex, Peyton, Chloe and Zoe. He was preceded in death by his father Edward and father-in-law Robert Surber.
Among Doug’s favorite places were the City of Rocks, the Boulder Mountains and his family’s cabin on Lake Pend Oreille. He was known for his vitality, huge heart, and deep love for wild places. He will be remembered as a loving and supportive husband, son and brother, favorite uncle, loyal and dedicated friend and wise mentor.
A memorial service will be scheduled at a later date. Janet invites people to leave messages and memories online at www.woodriverchapel.com.