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Home arrow Obituaries arrow Obituaries for the week ending Oct. 15, 2005

Obituaries for the week ending Oct. 15, 2005

Alvy J. Pfefferkorn, 90, of Summerville, died Oct. 7 at a care center in La Grande. A graveside service will begin at 2 p.m. Tuesday at the Summerville Cemetery.

Mr. Pfefferkorn was born July 30, 1915, to Fred and Della See Pfefferkorn at his family homestead west of Summerville. He was the youngest of seven children born. In November of 1938 he married Lila Lewis.

He lived his entire life in the Summerville area where he was a farmer and rancher. He retired in 1980 from the Boise Cascade sawmill in Elgin.

Survivors include children, Reta Clark of Summerville, and Glen Pfefferkorn of Dallas; two grandsons; four great-grandchildren, and other relatives. His wife and siblings died earlier.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society or Grande Ronde Hospital Hospice in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.


Virginia Lorraine Piper, 87, of Salem and formerly of La Grande died Oct. 2 at her home. A private memorial service was held in Salem.

Mrs. Piper was born July 1, 1918, to Roy and Ethel Cusick in Portland. She grew up in the La Grande, and served in the Navy during World War II. On Dec. 28, 1946, she married Jack Curtis Piper in Pendleton. He was an elementary school principal in the La Grande School District until his death in 1970.

She worked for Eastern Oregon University as a secretary for 22 years, and retired in 1985 when she moved to Salem. She was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in La Grande and later in Salem.

Survivors include a brother, Dick Cusick of Joshua, Texas; children and their spouses, Ginger and Bob Mahon of Philomath, Carol and Glenn Misner of Portland, and John and Karen Piper of Salem; five grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. A brother, Ted Cusick, and a sister, Joyce Huffman, died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Union Gospel Mission in Salem.


Grace Powell Banet, 93, of La Grande died Sept. 30 at a local care center. Services were held Oct. 3 at Loveland Funeral Chapel.

Mrs. Banet was born Nov. 6, 1911, to Everett Powell and Alma Allbright in Clover, Ind. She attended high school in Shoals, Ind., and then nurse training at Kosair in Louisville, Ky.

On Dec. 24, 1935, she married Joseph H. Banet in Indiana. She was a member at the First Presbyterian Church of La Grande and was involved in Bible study, women's groups and couples' groups at the church.

She enjoyed sewing, knitting, gardening and cooking. She was a great pie baker. She worked as a nurse in the Kosair Crippled Children's Hospital in Louisville and at Wittenburg University at the Student Health Center

Survivors include a daughter and her husband, Virginia and Dale Mammen of La Grande; two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Her husband, two sisters, Hazel Quimby and Ethel Ferguson, and a brother, Thomas Powell, all died earlier.

Memorials can be made to the Hurricane Katrina Boy Scouts of America Employee Relief Fund in care of National BSA Foundation, P.O.Box 152079, Irving, Texas 75015-2079, or the First Presbyterian Church, 1308 Washington Ave., La Grande 97850.


Bernice "Bee" Thornburgh, 90, Joseph, died Oct. 7 at the Wallowa Valley Care Center. A memorial service will begin at 2 p.m. Friday at the Joseph United Methodist Church. A reception will follow at the church.

Mrs. Thornburgh was born Nov. 9, 1914, to Norm and Rubie Winings in Lostine. She graduated from Lostine High School and in 1956 from a business school in Spokane.

In 1936 she married Frank McCully Jr. She assisted in the family businesses, which included Joseph Sales, Joseph Rainbow Theater and Joseph Bowling Alley. After a divorce she moved to Spokane and worked four years for Central Premix.

In 1957 she married Luther Thornburgh, a Joseph rancher. They worked hard to build a successful ranch over 40 years on upper Prairie Creek. The couple retired and maintained a home in Enterprise until he died in 1998.

She was a member of the Joseph United Methodist Church, Beta Sigma Phi sorority and the Joseph Bridge Club. She was also active in the Oregon Grange, Rebekahs and Chief Joseph Days.

She loved Wallowa County and will be remembered by family, friends and caregivers for her sweetness and loving personality, her humorous sparkle and warm smile.

She was preceded in death by two husbands; two sisters, Ruth and Joyce, and daughter-in-laws, Cheri and Chris; three sons, Frank McCully and wife Sheila of San Diego, Ron McCully of Eugene and Craig McCully of Seattle; two grandchildren, and brother-in-law, Bruce Cumming of Walla Walla.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Joseph United Methodist Church or the Wallowa County Museum.


Grace Loraine Burnett Sleeth 92, died Oct. 10 at Kennewick General Hospital. A graveside service will begin at 11 a.m. Saturdayat the Elgin Cemetery.

Mrs. Sleeth was born Sept. 17, 1913, to Tom and Hannah Thompson in Bowbells, N.D.

She graduated from elementary school on Aug. 23, 1929, and on Dec. 15, 1929, married Orval Virgil Burnett. The family lived at Starkey in a logging camp.

In 1950 she rented an apartment in La Grande so her son could attend high school. At that time she worked in a cafeteria. The family later moved to Elgin. After the death of her husband she married Kenneth Sleeth on Jan. 8, 1992. She was an immaculate homemaker and cleaned homes for a living. She known for her coleslaw, and could turn a small meal into a feast. She enjoyed making afghans, having company, camping, fishing and hunting.

Survivors include by her husband of Kennewick; a son, Verle Burnett of Hermiston; five grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and five great-great-grandchildren. Her siblings, a niece, Jean Blaylock, a grandson, Michael Burnett, and a daughter-in-law, Frances Burnett, all died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Tri-Cities Chaplaincy in care of Burns Mortuary of Hermiston.


Fleta Laura Anderson McCoy, 86 of La Grande, died Oct. 8. The funeral will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday at the First Presbyterian Church. Burial will follow at the Hillcrest Cemetery. Viewing will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday at Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St., La Grande.

Mrs. McCoy was born Jan. 6, 1919, to James and Iva Cook Anderson in Harlan, Kan. She graduated from Harlan High School in 1936, and attended Fort Hayes State College in Hays, Kan., and taught in various schools in Smith County, Kan.

In 1941, she moved to La Grande, and on Sept. 6, 1941, married Fred McCoy in Pocatello, Idaho.

She was a homemaker for many years, and in 1986 began working for the U.S. Forest Service. She volunteered with a senior program until ill health prevented her from continuing this past summer.

She was a member of the First Presbyterian Church and enjoyed gardening, church activities, arts and crafts and was involved in the reading programs in local schools.

She will be remembered as a person who everyone loved.

Survivors include a son and his wife, Tim and Gloria McCoy, of Coos Bay, and other relatives.

Her husband Fred McCoy, brothers Raymond Anderson and Bud Anderson and sisters Creta Anderson Grimm and Arlene Anderson died earlier.

Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of choice in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.


Marguerite Frances Winters, 87, of Yakima and formerly of La Grande died Oct. 11. At her request there will be no memorial service. Burial will be at Hillcrest Cemetery.

Miss Winters was born Feb. 15, 1918, to Philip and Ella Hauser Winters in Dallas. A granddaughter of early settlers from Germany in Yamhill County, she attended schools in Walla Walla, Hermiston and La Grande. She graduated in 1935 from La Grande High School, and attended Eastern Oregon Normal School. She worked at the college as a librarian and later was employed as a secretary for the U.S Forest Service.

She was a longtime resident of La Grande, but in 1996 she moved to Yakima to be closer to her family.

She enjoyed gardening, sewing, making doll clothes, embroidering, knitting, crocheting and caring for her pets.

Survivors include her sister, Roberta Leonard of Yakima, a brother and sister-in-law, Eugene and Leona Winters of Eugene; and other relatives.

A sister, Phyllis, and a brother, Lowell, died earlier.

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