Max Howard Gano | PASSAGES

Max Howard Gano -
Max Howard Gano
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Max Howard Gano passed away on Feb. 21, 2014 at his home on Bainbridge Island.

Max was born on Dec. 29, 1955 in Eugene, Ore.,  and  lived in various towns in Oregon until he moved to Spokane, Wash., in the early 1980s and then to Seattle in 1988; settling on Bainbridge Island in 2006.

Max was an exceptional person, leaving home at age 14 to escape difficult circumstances. Although his path was challenging, he graduated from South Eugene High School in 1974 and then attended Lane Community College, Eastern Washington University, and finally the University of Washington, where he earned first a bachelor’s degree in East Asian Studies and then a master’s degree from the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies.

Max met his wife Laura, in Spokane in 1987.  They married in 1992 in Seattle and together built a beautiful life, creating three wonderful children who were Max’s very heart and soul. A passionate man, Max was an accomplished and respected musician, an avid sailor, and was well known in the IT industry, especially for his expertise in Data Governance. But Max’s greatest joy came from being a father, husband and friend.  Max’s family and friends find comfort in knowing that his last moments were at home with the loves of his life; his wife Laura, and his beloved children, Emily, Paul and Rowan.

Max’s 14-year-old-son, Paul, wrote the following tribute to his father:

Max Gano

The man who will always be taller than me stronger than me and always be the man of the perfect ethics. Who will always be able to lift me from the hole we call depression. Who left this world knowing that all the people he met in life would cherish him and not go home with an empty hole in their heart where he used to be but with a stronger one with which they will think of him as one of the strongest people they ever met. Who constantly fought the plague that took him, who always tried to show his kin how to treat others with kindness, and who had such a large heart he could share it with all he met and not jealously hide his affection and love to share with a few but let it flourish and let every creature on this earth feel his love and hope that one day there will be peace on this earth and that one day all the people who hearts he touched will join him in a better place.

With a heavy heart laden with love, Paul Gano

Max’s family would like to extend particular thanks to the doctors, nurses and other staff at both Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and the University of Washington Medical Center, who fought hard by his side, first to eradicate his illness and then, when all options were exhausted, to make it possible for him to spend his remaining time at home.

Brilliant, loving, inspired and generous, Max will be missed and remembered by all who knew him. He is survived by his wife Laura Blair-Gano, his children Emily, Paul, and Rowan Gano, all from Bainbridge Island; his mother Elizabeth Anne Richards, nephew Jimmy Ridge, and sister Suzanne Gano, all from Florence, Ore.;  his  mother- and father-in-law Judy and Paul Blair of Poulsbo, and his sister and brother in law Katherine and Jarrod Nack of Bellevue. Max also leaves behind his cousins Maureen Gano-Smith and Crystal Hanson, as well as his dear  friends Lena Davidson and Bre, Megan and Harlow Ganné.  Max was preceded in death by his brother Boyce Gano and father Daniel Gano.

A private celebration of life will be held by the family. Memorial contributions can be made to: Arms Around Bainbridge, or the Gano Kids Memorial Fund: Please sign the online guest book at

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