Paul Jendrucko, aka Dr. Lavender, has been a part of the Sequim Lavender Festival with the Sequim Lavender Company that he owns with his wife, Mary, since 1999.
They claimed dual residency between Sequim and California more than 25 years ago and took vacations here and even started their lavender business before moving, he said.
“We call this Chapter 2 of our lives,” he said about living in Sequim.
They have two grown daughters and Jendrucko retired from law enforcement before growing and harvesting lavender post-retirement.
Question 11: What is a guilty pleasure of yours?
Jendrucko: Taking naps as often as possible. I can sleep though a train wreck.
Bonus Question 1: How did Dr. Lavender come about?
Jendrucko: I’m a licensed nurseryman and sell plants at farmers markets and most notably the Sequim Lavender Festival’s Street Fair. At the festival there’s been an interest in lavender that’s grown with the 21-25 year old generation and my booth there has been inundated. I adopted the name of Dr. Lavender after walking through Pike Place Market one day with a friend. I asked a cartoonist there to draw me holding a bouquet of lavender. My daughter later PhotoShopped it and I got the name trademarked in Washington.
From there I got a lab coat and I offer free advice with no appointment necessary at the Lavender Festival and by request at garden clubs. I’ve created and published the “Lavender Owner’s Manual” downloadable for free through www.lavenderfestival.com.
Question 21: As a child, what did you want to be or do?
Jendrucko: A fireman. I spent the first six years of my life in New Jersey and I went to local parades and saw them but it turned out I was afraid of heights. So I became a police officer. I spent 30 years in law enforcement in L.A. County. I retired as a lieutenant in charge of a group of investigators of domestic violence and child abuse cases.
Question 26: Have you ever broken a bone?
Jendrucko: No, I’ve completed 18 marathons and never suffered broken bones either.
Bonus Question 2: What was the hardest marathon?
Jenducko: The North Olympic Discovery Marathon because it has so many various twists and turns and high winds at the end on the City Pier in Port Angeles. I’ve done three of them and the last was 2007. I hope to get back into it. I’m 63 and I still think I have few left in me.
Question 27: If you could go anywhere in the world tomorrow, where would you go?
Jendrucko: I’d visit the countries of my ancestors, Wales and Poland. My dad used to say the Poles were some of the friendliest people in Europe.
Question 44: Would you rather live to 100 or go out in a blaze of glory?
Jendrucko: I’d go out in a blaze of glory running a marathon holding a bouquet of fresh cut lavender in my teeth knowing that child abuse was eradicated in our society.
Bonus Question 3: What’s your favorite part of the Lavender Festival?
Jendrucko: I’m incredibly surprised and satisfied that there are so many people interested in the harvest season. The festival has grown every year and when you go back 18 years the U.S. has suffered economic downturn, strife, 9/11, military installations being attacked and more. It’s gratifying that through all the stresses on society, the Lavender Festival has been able to provide stress releases for people to come out here to relax at little to no cost.
For more on the Sequim Lavender Festival, visit www.lavenderfestival.com.