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Port of Allyn interim director LeAnn Dennis dies

Port of Allyn commissioners observed a moment of silence at the regular meeting Jan. 1 for interim Executive Director LeAnn Dennis, age 55, who died Christmas Day.

“LeAnn will be greatly missed. She left a big hole,” Commissioner Judy Scott said.

Scott read a statement from Dennis’ daughter, Alena Dennis, at the meeting.

“Anyone who ever met LeAnn would tell you that their lives changed forever after knowing her. She made everything brighter and gave her whole heart to anyone who showed her kindness and love. Her commitment to caring for her family, her friends, her work and her community was simply unrivaled. For being such a tiny lady, she sure knew how to be the biggest personality in the room. In this time, I know she would want everyone to remember her for all the times she made you laugh, smile and feel cared for. There’s not a single person that could ever replace the light that she cast in each and every one of our lives. She was an astounding mother, a proud grandmother, the hardest worker, a community leader and most of all, a human full of love for everyone in her life. She will be missed forever and she will never be forgotten.”

A public memorial will be in late spring or early summer, according to Scott.

Dennis replaced Executive Director Lary Coppola in October. Coppola died Sept. 30, only a few weeks after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Commissioner Ted Jackson said the port will be urgently looking for a new full-time director.

“To lose both people in less than three months … feels unprecedented,” said Travis Merrill, who quickly assumed Dennis’ administrative duties.

Commissioners voted to appoint Merrill interim executive director and Patty Noel as interim executive assistant.

The temporary appointments will last for 90 days, commissioners said.

Merrill will be paid $34 an hour and Noel will earn $32 an hour.

Both will receive pay retroactively from Dec. 26, when they stepped in after Dennis’ death.

Author Bio

June Williams, Reporter

Shelton-Mason County Journal & Belfair Herald


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