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Home arrow Obituaries arrow OBITUARIES FOR APRIL 26 - MAY 1, 2004



Cherrie Cupinski


Cherrie F. Cupinski, 89, of Cove died Friday at her home. Loveland Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements. A full obituary will be published later.

Oscar Linkous

La Grande


Oscar Linkous, 89, of La Grande died Saturday at a local care center.

Viewing will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday at Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St. A celebration of life will begin at 10 a.m. Wednesday at the Haines Methodist Church with Sally Wiens officiating. A lunch and gathering of family and friends will follow a brief ceremony at the Haines Cemetery.

Mr. Linkous was born Nov. 25, 1914, to Millum and Monty Bernard Linkous in Knoxville, Tenn. He attended school in Weiser, Idaho, and left school after the eighth grade to work for his family, packing camp supplies to their summer mountain sheep camps.

He was always called upon to work with horses that no one else could handle. He told stories of riding green broke horses into the mountains, fishing the high lakes, cougar encounters and all of the interesting people he met along the way.

He married Leora "Jackie" Blunt on Aug. 25, 1942, in Caldwell, Idaho, and served in the Army as a training officer during World War II. He worked for the Baker Livestock Auction Yards for 35 years and was known as one of the best cattlemen in Baker County. He augmented his regular salary with his rodeo winnings for many years.

After retirement, the couple moved to La Grande to be closer to their daughter and grandchildren. He enjoyed his family, horses, dogs, baseball, reading and the mountain where he grew up.

Survivors include his daughter and son-in-law, Jan and Richard Procsal of La Grande; three grandchildren; and other relatives. His wife died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Eastern Oregon High School Rodeo Team in care of Daniels Chapel.

Karen Hayes

Formerly of Wallowa County


Karen Opal Hayes, 62, of Bristol, Tenn., and formerly of Wallowa County, died April 4 of natural causes.

Mrs. Hayes was born Dec. 28, 1941, to Lewis and Fern Tippett Kerr in Umatilla. The family lived in Wallowa County for many years before moving to California. After her father died in 1963 the family moved back to Wallowa County. She married Tom Hayes on Aug. 24, 1966, in Wallowa. They had a daughter, Fern Vanassche.

Survivors include two sisters, Patricia Crist of Red Bluff, Calif, and Ann Cromer of Laurel Hills, Fla.; two brothers, John Kerr of Valdez, Alaska, and Byron Kerr of Fairbanks, Alaska.

Oscar Linkous

Memorial contributions in honor of the late Oscar Linkous can be made to the Baker High School Rodeo Team in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St., La Grande 97850.

The obituary that was published Monday incorrectly referred to the Eastern Oregon High School Rodeo Team.

Violet Conaway

Formerly of La Grande and Joseph


Violet Effie Varney Conaway, 88, of McMinnville and formerly of La Grande and Joseph died April 15 at her home. Burial was at the McMinnville Masonic Cemetery. Macy & Son Funeral Directors of McMinnville were in charge of arrangements.

Mrs. Conaway was born Oct. 3, 1915, to Roy and Bessie Varney in Flora. She spent most of her early years on Upper Prairie Creek and graduated from Joseph High School. On August 27, 1938, she married James B. Conaway on her family ranch. She worked as a secretary at La Grande High School before the couple moved to McMinnville in 1950. The family lived in Anchorage, Alaska, and Vancouver, Wash., where she worked as an attendance clerk at a junior high school. The family returned to McMinnville in 1980, bringing two granddaughters with them.

Survivors include children, Michael Conaway of Willamina, and Molly Pullen of The Dalles; two brothers, Otis Varney of Enterprise, and Roy Varney of Dayton, Wash.; several grandchildren; great-grandchildren and other relatives. Her husband and a brother, Vester Varney, both died earlier.

Sally Waites

Formerly of Imbler


Sally Sue Waites, 53, of Oregon City and formerly of Imbler died April 24 after a long illness.

The funeral will begin at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Hillside Chapel in Oregon City. A memorial service will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Summerville Cemetery Chapel. Burial will be at the Summerville Cemetery.

Mrs. Waites was born May 15, 1950, to Ralph and Patricia Frizzell in La Grande. She graduated from Imbler High School and attended beauty school in Portland, where she married Jim Waites on Sept. 20, 1969. She worked as a hair stylist and as a school-bus driver for the Oregon City School District. She always greeted the children on her bus with a smile and was a confidante to many of them.

She enjoyed watching game shows, going to garage sales and spending time with her family. She was an amazing cook and had a wonderful sense of humor.

Survivors include her husband of Oregon City; children and their spouses, Sally and John West of Mulino and Juanita Waites of Oregon City; brothers, Charles Frizzell of Summerville and Larry Frizzell of Olympia, Wash.; and two grandchildren. Two brothers, Gary and Kenneth Frizzell, died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Oregon Humane Society.

Opal Kelly

La Grande


Opal M. Kelly, 74, of La Grande died of natural causes April 24 at the home of her daughter in La Grande.

Memorial services will begin at 7 p.m. May 4 in the Lighthouse Church in Island City. Officiating at the services will be Pastor Jessie Parker.

Mrs. Kelly was born June 10, 1929, in Detroit, Mich., the daughter of William and Fern Behem (Goodlet). She was raised and educated in Romulus, Mich., and both she and her future husband graduated from Romulus High School with the Class of 1946.

She married Bobbie Lee Kelly on July 12, 1947, in Romulus. In 1957 she and her husband moved to St. Petersburg, Fla., where he was a masonry contractor. They later sold their business and moved to Crystal River, Fla., in 1973. The couple built a racquetball and swimming club and continued to run the business until they moved to the La Grande area to retire in 1994.

While in La Grande, Opal volunteered her time to the service of the Lighthouse Church, cooking, cleaning and always ready in a moments notice to help others with their needs. Her last wish was to be able to attend the dedication of the new church building at the Lighthouse Church, and that wish came true April 17, when she attended the dedication. Opal was faithful at reading her Bible daily.

Survivors include her husband, Bobbie Kelly of La Grande; three children and their spouses, Bobby and Mary Ellen Kelly II, David and Jan Kelly, all of Crystal River, and Belinda and Steve Neumann of La Grande; sister, Willie Spencer of Michigan; seven grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren as well as many nieces and nephews.

Two brothers and five sisters died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Building Fund of The Lighthouse Church in care of Loveland Funeral Chapel, 1508 Fourth St., La Grande 97850.

‘Dick' Standish

La Grande


Richard J. "Dick" Standish, 61, of La Grande died April 16 at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Walla Walla of natural causes. Mountain View Funeral Chapel was in charge of arrangements.

Mr. Standish was born Sept. 28, 1942, in Minneapolis. Survivors include his son and daughter-in-law, Corey and Rebeccah Standish, and three grandchildren.

Mr. Standish's ashes will be spread over the Snake River near Huntington. He was an avid fisherman and loved the outdoors.

Elizabeth Grabeel

Formerly of Elgin


Elizabeth Fae Grabeel, 52, of Heppner and formerly of Elgin died April 29 at her home. Burial will be at the Hermiston Cemetery.

Mrs. Grabeel was born June 7, 1951, to Harry and Erma Trump in The Dalles. Her siblings were all born in La Grande. She graduated from Hermiston High School in 1969, and on May 20, 1972, she married Charles Grabeel. She had a home day-care business for several years, drove a school bus for the Stanfield School District, and worked as a produce manager for the Red Apple Market.

Survivors include her husband of Lexington; children and their spouses, Shane and Cheryl Grabeel of Clarkston, Wash., Cory Grabeel, and Staci and Ben Harrison, all of Hermiston; a stepdaughter, Kellee Metz of Grants Pass; five grandchildren; siblings and their spouses, Susan and Wes Brooks, and Lori and Chuck Royer, all of Hermiston, Gary and Kim Trump, and David and Angel Trump, all of Kennewick, Wash.; a foster brother, Will Vasquez, and other relatives.

Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society.

Nellie Vannice

North Powder


Nellie Delia Vannice, 95, of North Powder died April 29 at Grande Ronde Hospital. The funeral will begin at 1 p.m. Tuesday the North Powder Methodist Church. A graveside service will begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday at the Alford Cemetery, near Harrisburg.

Mrs. Vannice was born on Dec. 21, 1909, to Henry and Esther Falk in Halsey. She graduated from Halsey High School and married Kenneth Vannice in 1929. He died in 2001 after almost 72 years of marriage. She attended 13 consecutive summer sessions to earn her bachelor's degree. She was a music teacher and a long-time member of the Rebekah Lodge, the Grange and the Methodist Church. She was noted for her cooking and sewing.

Survivors include children and their spouses, Kenneth and Holly Vannice and Donald and Bonnie Vannice, all of Halfway, and Vernon and Martha Vannice of Lacey, Wash.; 11 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren. A grandchild, a great-grandchild, two sisters, Pearl Boots and Grace Thompson, and a brother, Everett Falk, all died earlier.

Memorials may be made in lieu of flowers to the American Diabetes Association in care of Fisher Funeral Home, 306 Washington St. S.E., Albany 97321, or Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.


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