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  1. #1

    OR - Howard 'Curtiss' Olson, 67, Portland, 15 Dec 2008

    Police seek help to solve artist's killing in NE Portland
    by Michael Russell, The Oregonian
    Monday February 09, 2009, 9:40 PM
    The Portland Police Bureau is asking for the public's help to solve the killing of a Northeast Portland glass artist nearly two months ago.

    A neighbor found Howard Curtiss Olson, 67, dead Dec. 15 at his home in the 100 block of Northeast 143rd Ave. He apparently had been brutally beaten.

    Olson, who went by Curtiss, was known for his glass art, especially kitty pins and smiling character faces with googly eyes. His works are on display in galleries, pediatric waiting rooms and private homes across the Northwest.

    Some of Olson's work can be found at www.kittypins.com.

    Anyone with information is asked to call detectives Steve Ober at 503-823-4033 or Jim McCausland at 503-823-0449.

    Also, Crime Stoppers has offered a $1,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest. Call Crime Stoppers at 503-823-4357.

    -- Michael Russell;
    michaelrussell@news.oregonian.com

    http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/i...olve_arti.html

    http://www.kittypins.com/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Native Oregonian now in Chicago
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    1,675
    How sad. I just looked over his website, obviously it hasn't been updated. Very cute stuff. He seemed like a really interesting man, definitely into old cars!

    Kimster, do you how safe that area of Portland is now?? I left in '96 so I'm unsure, when I go back to visit I don't do a lot of touring over there. You know back in the day you wouldn't go into certain areas, now they are all spruced up.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by chicagofa13 View Post
    How sad. I just looked over his website, obviously it hasn't been updated. Very cute stuff. He seemed like a really interesting man, definitely into old cars!

    Kimster, do you how safe that area of Portland is now?? I left in '96 so I'm unsure, when I go back to visit I don't do a lot of touring over there. You know back in the day you wouldn't go into certain areas, now they are all spruced up.
    I go all over Portland because I live near Eugene and don't know the metro area very well! After living in So. Calif. for a time, Portland seems all good and well to me. LOL! What do I know?

    I'd sure like to know who killed this man, tho. He seems so kind. I didn't know him. I do think I saw his work at the Saturday Market, however.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    33,799
    How sad! I love glass art from the Northwest. My family is in Portland and Mt. Hood. I lived in Seaside for a year. The landscape in Portland is always shifting because people do buy into iffy neighborhoods and revitalize them. My sis had a grand old house in the Northeast section. It was a nice neighborhood, but you wouldn't be out and about at night there.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Orange County, NY
    Posts
    46
    Sad story, hope they get some leads soon. He did seem an interesting character. And I do like his glass art.

    Here is another page about him and his art:
    http://fireborneglass.com/show_artis...=curtiss_olson

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    165
    Quote Originally Posted by chicagofa13 View Post

    Kimster, do you how safe that area of Portland is now??
    <snip>
    It is one of the worst areas. Rockwood, East County and Gresham have been hotbeds for gang and drug activity in the last 7 years or so. The area where Olson lived is right between Portland and Rockwood.There have been a lot of gang related shootings in that area just in the last couple months. It used to be an alright neighborhood, but gentrification pushed a lot of the crime from NE Portland to East County now that Ne Portland is all spruced up.



    hth

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Native Oregonian now in Chicago
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    1,675
    Quote Originally Posted by Kimster View Post
    I go all over Portland because I live near Eugene and don't know the metro area very well! After living in So. Calif. for a time, Portland seems all good and well to me. LOL! What do I know?

    I'd sure like to know who killed this man, tho. He seems so kind. I didn't know him. I do think I saw his work at the Saturday Market, however.
    He seems like a great guy! And I'm sure you are right, the Saturday Market would be his kind of place.

    There are some areas of Portland you should still be careful, but I know what you mean. I live is a so-so neighborhood in Chicago and I feel comfortable walking because I am used to it. But I see a huge increase in the number of people I am worried are shady types walking the streets. It's the economy I think...

    Quote Originally Posted by Razzle View Post
    It is one of the worst areas. Rockwood, East County and Gresham have been hotbeds for gang and drug activity in the last 7 years or so. The area where Olson lived is right between Portland and Rockwood.There have been a lot of gang related shootings in that area just in the last couple months. It used to be an alright neighborhood, but gentrification pushed a lot of the crime from NE Portland to East County now that Ne Portland is all spruced up.



    hth
    I totally get that. I used to work at Legacy Emanuel there at the edge of N/NE. It was turning around but the gangs (old school Crips/Bloods) were still active in the area. The places people go now are areas I wouldn't have set foot in. I heard they were being pushed out towards Gresham.

    Not seeming like the type of guy with enemies, I wonder if this was just some meth/crack head who was looking for money??

  8. #8
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    Apr 2013
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    21,439
    Listed as a cold case with the Portland PD:

    https://www.portlandoregon.gov/police/article/533481

    On December 15, 2008, at 8:21 a.m., Officers responded to 121 NE 143rd Avenue to the report of a possible dead body. When Officers arrived the neighbor told them that he hadn’t seen his neighbor, Howard Curtiss Olson, for several days and was concerned about his welfare.... Officers went to the back door of the residence where they found Mr. Olson lying face down on the floor. It was determined Mr. Olson died from homicidal violence.

    Mr. Olson was a local artist who mainly specialized in fused glass artwork. Mr. Olson worked out of his home and was described as reclusive. The Cold Case Unit would like anyone with information regarding this case to contact them.



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