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Alfred "Al" Kukes

August 29, 1925 — July 16, 2023

Ellensburg, Washington

Alfred (Al) Kukes, 97, a longtime resident of Ellensburg, passed away peacefully at his home on Sunday, July 16, 2023 surrounded by his family.

Al was born on August 29, 1925 in Toppenish, Washington to John & Johanna (Hofferber) Kukes.  The Kukes family moved to the Kittitas Valley when Al was six years old and he attended school in Ellensburg, graduating from Ellensburg High School in 1943. He enlisted in the United States Army in November of 1945 and served during the end of World War II, with assignments in London and Germany before his honorable discharge in the spring of 1947.

After his service to our nation, Al returned to Ellensburg where he began working as a mechanic at the local Oldsmobile dealership before opening the Richfield service station with his brother,  Harry, and their father. They operated the service station together, along with Kukes Brothers Auto Repair Shop, for many years.  During this time, they also each began to establish their own orchards in the Edgemont-Thrall area. Eventually Al “retired” from mechanic work and dedicated all of his time to owning and operating his orchard.  He loved the time he spent working in the orchard growing apples, peaches, and pears. He was very dedicated to his farm.

Al married Mary Louise Klocke on March 8, 1952 and they were blessed with three children - John, Terry and Joanna.  After Mary passed away in 1974, Al later married Leslie Larsen and was blessed with two more children - Jak and Kim.  Eventually, Al and Leslie parted ways but continued to enjoy each other’s company and spending time with their family.

Al loved being in the mountains and spent many hours hunting, fishing and camping. He was very dedicated to his faith and a lifetime member of Good Hope Lutheran Church. He had a great sense of humor and enjoyed the time he spent with his family.

Al is survived by his children Jon Kukes of Alaska; Terry (Debbie) Kukes, Joanna (Randy) Fischer, Jak (Laura) Kukes and Kim (Matt) Funston,and his sister, Jane Eastham all of Ellensburg. He was also blessed with 15 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great grandchildren.  He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Lillian Morrison and brothers Harry, Richard and Ken Kukes.

Funeral services will be conducted at 2:00 p.m. this Friday, July 21, 2023 at Good Hope Lutheran Church, 1402 Brick Road in Ellensburg with private family burial and military honors to follow at High Valley Cemetery. Viewing for family and friends will be Thursday, July 20 from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. at Johnston & Williams in Ellensburg.

Memorial contributions in Al’s honor are suggested to KVH Hospice, 1506 E. Radio Road in Ellensburg.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Johnston & Williams of Ellensburg.  Online condolences may be left for the family at

To send flowers to the family in memory of Alfred "Al" Kukes, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, July 20, 2023

10:00am - 4:00 pm (Pacific time)

Johnston & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory

301 East 3rd Avenue, Ellensburg, WA 98926

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Funeral Service

Friday, July 21, 2023

Starts at 2:00 pm (Pacific time)

Good Hope Lutheran Church

1402 Brick Road, Ellensburg, WA 98926

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