Drew L. Hanson, 87, died April 16, in Kaiser Hospital in Antioch, a victim of COVID-19. He was born Nov. 17, 1932, in Salt Lake City, Utah, to LaVere M. Hanson and Carma Bingham Hanson. He grew up in Salt Lake City until age 12 when, upon the divorce of his parents, Drew moved to California with his father. At age 18, Drew joined the U. S. Navy and served on the hospital ship, USS Consolation, during the Korean War.
After discharge, Drew earned his GED. He worked for Pacific Bell in Los Angeles. One of his jobs was setting up the Hollywood Academy Awards TV broadcast. Eventually, he transferred to San Francisco with AT&T doing microwave transmission engineering.
Drew attended Golden Gate College at night earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees. He joined the Toastmasters Club for more public speaking experience. His first home was in Vallejo until his AT&T office relocated to Pleasanton when he bought his Brentwood home.
In Brentwood, he was very active in the American Legion Post in many fundraiser dinners. He interviewed local high school boys for attendance to Boys State. Drew once served as American Legion District Adjutant. At one time Drew volunteered to transport cancer patients to their treatments. He regularly offered his self-taught HAM radio skills for events like the Mount Diablo bike race and weekly networks, “KD6GLY signing off now.” For years, Drew loved and owned many cats.
After being away many years, in 1964, Drew renewed contact with his sister, Shanna Hanson Blake, and other family members in the Salt Lake City area. During the summer and at Christmas each year, he visited Salt Lake City relatives and his mother and stepfather, Edward (Andy) Anderson, in Great Falls, Montana. His five nieces and nephews loved it when he visited Salt Lake City, and he regularly took one of them with him when he continued on to visit at the Montana cabin in the summer. Each family member could count on a phone call on their birthday. Salt Lake City Christmases at the Blake home have not been the same since Drew has been unable to travel.
Summer activities included Montana fishing and Utah backpacking and fishing. Drew loved photography and other solitary adventures were ocean fishing and backpack camping along the Mount Whitney Trail.
Drew was preceded in death by his father, mother and stepfather and is survived by Salt Lake City, Utah relatives: his sister, Shanna Hanson Blake (Gary); nieces and nephews, Tracy Blake Hansen (Richard), Brian Blake (Laurie), Jennifer Blake Sanford (Dee), Kathleen Blake and Barry Blake (McKell); and 10 grand-nieces and nephews and one great grand-niece.
Drew has had wonderful, helpful friends and neighbors for many years, including Johnny and Margaret Johnson and Terrissa and Bill Hein, especially during his recent serious medical issues.
After pandemic restrictions on group sizes and traveling are lifted, memorial services will be held later in Brentwood and in Salt Lake City, where burial will take place.