Tunell Alneta Kinne O’Brien

Tunell Alneta Kinne O’Brien went into eternal peace on November 26, 2022 in her home in Happy Valley, Oregon.  Tunell was born on September 3, 1942 in Tacoma, Washington to Elizabeth Bryson Kinne (Zubitis) and Wilbert M. Kinne.  She is survived by her children, Francis X. O’Brien of Happy Valley, OR; Elizabeth R. O’Brien-Yang (Jay) of Sammamish, WA and Kathleen J. O’Brien (Steve) of Spokane, WA.  Tunell is also survived by her four grandchildren, Joseph and Ava Yang of Sammamish, and Erin and Bailey Enright of Spokane and North Bend, WA.  She was the great grandmother to Alaia Tunell Thiel.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald F. O’Brien, who passed in 1989, and to whom she was married from 1962-1989.

She is also survived by her siblings, Nancy Hallett of Elk Grove IL, Will Kinne (Koni) of Tacoma, WA; Charles Kinne (Zena) of Los Lunas, NM, and Michael Zubitis (Craig) of Tukwila, WA.  Additionally, Tunell was an aunt to numerous nieces and nephews in the Kinne, Hallett and O’Brien families.

Tunell was a 1960 graduate of Bethel High School in Spanaway, WA.

Tunell was proud to work in the labor movement, beginning her career with UFCW Local 1105 (Seattle) and later with UFCW Local 555 (Portland).  Prior to this career, she enjoyed working at the Bellevue Racquet Club and for Mayfair/Lucky grocery stores.  Many lifelong friendships were developed in these workplaces which she cherished.

Tunell was as unique as her name.  She loved to learn and was a passionate reader.  Tunell loved to entertain and cook incredible meals for family and friends.  She was fearless in her willingness to try new recipes and cooking techniques that were self-taught or learned from TV or classes.  She also loved to sew, quilt, knit and craft.  Again, her adventurous spirit included tries at wedding dresses, upholstering, macrame, stamping and most of the craft phases that arose over the decades.  She went all-in on each new project.

Tunell was a lifelong Democrat who enthusiastically supported policies to better the lives of working people.  She was a Mariner baseball fan who enjoyed a trip north to the baseball park.  Watching with her family on TV, she witnessed the Ms advance to the playoffs in 2022.

Tunell faced her challenges head on and did not complain.  She passed peacefully and comfortably in her home with her family.  Many friends and relatives visited her during the hospice period which she appreciated immensely.

A Celebration of Life will be held on January 21, 2023 at The Aerie at Eagle Landing in Happy Valley Oregon at 2:00 pm.  Her family invites you to share memories, conversations and celebrate her life with the same enthusiasm she brought to each event and friendship over the years.  In memory of Tunell, a donation may be made to Providencefoundations.org/honorhospice or Rosehaven.org.


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