Tonya Strickland

Tonya Strickland is a Gig Harbor mom-of-two, longtime journalist, and Instagram influencer in the family and travel niche. Her blog, Two in Tow & On the Go, was recently named among the 10 Seattle-Area Instagram Accounts to Follow by ParentMap magazine. Tonya and her husband Bowen moved to Gig Harbor from California in 2021 with their two elementary school-age kiddos, Clara and Wyatt. Find her on Instagram and Facebook for all the kid-friendly places in and around Gig Harbor.

Two in Tow & On the Go | ‘Tis the season for spraygrounds

Jun 07, 2024

Spraygrounds –  the delightfully named water-fun cousin of playgrounds – are officially back on ’till Labor Day and we’re here to tell you all about them.

Two in Tow & On the Go | Connections made in our 14 Names to Remember Project

May 24, 2024

Merriam-Webster defines human connection as the state of being linked to another person or people through kinship or common interest. For me, human connection is the reason behind most of my writing.

One thing I’ve always said about my motivations for tracking down the names, dates, correct spellings, missing incident reports and the essential stories behind who these guys were is because I felt it was important to get the lives of these young men in front of people again. To put their stories, acts and sacrifices on the modern day record and not stuffed away in a printed-paper archive somewhere. And, with any luck, perhaps even attract the attention of their descendants who, in all likelihood, never found out the specifics of how their dad’s brother or their grandmother’s cousin fought and died in WWII.

14 Names to Remember | John M. Swensen

May 23, 2024

Pvt. John Swensen was born April 13, 1923 in Gig Harbor to Norwegian parents Albert and Hilma (Maurseth) Swensen. In the 1930 U.S. Census, he had four siblings: Ragna, Grette, Harold and Alfred “Alf” Swensen.

14 Names to Remember | Robert Niemann

May 23, 2024

Pfc. Robert “Bob” Henery Niemann was born Dec. 31, 1924, in Tacoma to Caroline “Biddy” (Hansen) Niemann and Herman Niemann Sr. of Vaughn.

14 Names to Remember | George Nelson

May 23, 2024

Pfc. George Victor Nelson was born June 21, 1922, in Hillhead, South Dakota, to Kerstin “Jessie” (Hanson) Nelson and Nikolai A. Nelson. In the 1930 U.S. Census, George Nelson had three siblings: Norman, Luella and Gladys Nelson. The family moved from the Midwest to Bremerton in the late 1930s; and then south to Gig Harbor in 1940.

14 Names to Remember | Herman C. Niemann

May 23, 2024

Pvt. Herman “Hap” Cecil Niemann was born Jan. 18, 1924, in Tacoma, to Caroline “Biddy” (Hansen) Niemann and Herman Niemann Sr.

14 Names to Remember | Douglas Mortensen

May 23, 2024

Douglas Warren Mortensen was born May 22, 1924 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to Frances (Goulet) Mortensen and George Richard Mortensen.

14 Names to Remember | Harold Mitts

May 23, 2024

First Lt. Harold Elmer Mitts was born July 23, 1915 in Capron, Oklahoma, to Bessie B. (Roberson) Mitts and Olie E. Mitts.

14 Names to Remember | Sylvester Metzinger

May 23, 2024

Pfc. Sylvester Martin Metzinger was born April 23, 1918 in Mitchell, South Dakota, to Celina (Vande Voorde) Metzinger and John J. Metzinger. His family moved to Letcher, South Dakota, after his father died in May 1925, and Metzinger attended school there. In the 1920 U.S. Census, he had three sisters: Marie, Loretta and Anna Metzinger.

14 Names to Remember | Kenneth Kirkendoll

May 23, 2024

Pvt. Kenneth Wayne Kirkendoll was born May 20, 1925 in Oketo, Kansas, to Ruth (Moble) Kirkendoll and Robert Kirkend0ll of Rosedale. In the 1940 U.S. Census, he had five siblings: Robert, Jerrold, Jack, Dale and Levi Kirkendoll.