Lawrence “Adrian” Fernandez was born April 14, 1950 in Bakersfield, California to Lawrence P. Fernandez and Beatrice W. Denton and passed away peacefully at Yakima Memorial Hospital on June 5, 2023. Adrian moved to Washington in the early seventies and his first son, Laurence was born shortly thereafter.
Adrian raised his son as a single father after his divorce and found his lifelong love, Rita Marie Nereson in 1978 and they married September 18, 1979. Adrian and Rita welcomed their second son, Michael in 1980 which completed the family. The family moved from their home in Centralia to Packwood in 1983, before settling in Forks in 1986.
Over the next 30 years, they raised their family and Adrian worked for the DNR in Clearwater as a Heavy Equipment Supervisor. Adrian spent countless hours fishing all around the Olympic Peninsula with his sons and grandchildren and volunteered his time on the weekends as a National Ski Patroller both at Hurricane Ridge and White Pass. Adrian also donated much of his spare time with the Forks Ambulance and an EMT/IV Tech.
Never satisfied with his current hobbies, Adrian went back to his Southern California Drag Racing roots as a young man and designed and built his very own ‘32 Ford Roadster Super-gas Drag Racing Car. Adrian raced all over the western United States ultimately capturing the 2013 Super Gas Champion “Wally” Trophy for his first place finish at Renegade Raceway at Yakima, WA with his pit crew consisting of his son Mike, and his grandchildren, Grace, Eli and Addison.
Adrian always had a strong will to help others and volunteer for other organizations such as incident team leader on forest fires, assisting with feeding the Naches Elk herd in the winter and teaching others in Outdoor Emergency Care and EMT training. Adrian also enjoyed visiting Laurence’s Coast Guard duty stations throughout his career and always talked about the trip he was able to take on the Polar Icebreaker USCGC HEALY from Juneau, Alaska to Seattle, WA with his son Laurence.
Upon Adrian’s retirement in 2016 they moved to their home against the hills in Naches, WA where Adrian enjoyed tinkering in his shop with his Dragster, going skiing with Rita and spending time with loved ones and friends. Adrian lost the love of his life in December of 2020 and missed her every day.
Adrian is survived by sons Laurence Jr. (Annina) of New Church, Virginia, Mike (Rebecca) of Anchorage, Alaska; grandchildren Maxine, Grace, Eli, Justin, Rebecca, Addison, Jennifer and Makayla; and sister Karen Wilkins (Tim) of Bakersfield, California and Yvonne Fernandez of Clovis, California. A memorial service is planned for August 19 at 2 p.m. at the White Pass Ski Area Day Lodge at 48935 US Hwy 12. To leave a message for the family please visit keithandkeith.com.