Oldest kayaker in town has lived quite the adventure-filled life

Eighty-year-old Gig Harbor resident Bee Dietz competes for the Gig Harbor Canoe and Kayak Race Team earlier this month in Clermont, Florida. CATHY KASPERBAUER Courtesy

BY JON MANLEY – Gig Harbor resident Bee Dietz likes to tell people she didn’t have much choice in who her husband was going to be.

Growing up in the Texas Panhandle as a young girl during World War II, Dietz’s mother was an eighth grade teacher. Even then, her mother raved about one her students. His name was Bob.

Bob and Bee got married in 1956, after Bob returned from serving as a parachutist for the U.S. Army in the Korean War.

But before getting married, Bob and Bee were childhood friends and adventure buddies. The two families took fishing vacations together in Colorado.

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“While the dads went fishing, Bob and I went rock climbing,” Bee said.

 Bob is now 86 years old, while Bee is 80. But they both remember one day vividly from one of their childhood trips, rock climbing at Monument Lake in southern Colorado. Rounding the lake was a ring of low-ridge mountains. Topping the ridge was a vertical rock wall, sitting on the north side of the lake.
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