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Home arrow Obituaries arrow Obituaries for the week ending Sept. 23, 2006


Obituaries for the week ending Sept. 23, 2006

Paula Errolo Burford, 80, of College Place, Wash., and formerly of Union died Sept. 17 at her daughter's home. The funeral was held today at Munselle-Rhodes Funeral Home in Milton-Freewater. Burial was at the Milton-Freewater Cemetery.

Mrs. Burford was born March 25, 1926, to Joseph Coleman and Katie Rosilla Deuel Lay in Medical Springs. She graduated from Union High School, and attended Brigham Young University. She moved to Los Angeles, Calif., where she worked for Western Union. On Sept. 16, 1949, she married Clifford Edwin Burford in Los Angeles. They returned to Oregon and lived in Milton-Freewater for several years. She was a homemaker, and loved music and the arts and provided lots of hands-on creative experiences for her children. After her husband's retirement, the couple moved to Walla Walla in 1990.

She was active in her church, and enjoyed oil painting, cake decorating, creative writing, sewing, crafts, genealogy. She was known for her sense of humor.

Survivors include children, Blaine Burford of Prescott, Ariz., Kim Burford of College Place, Paul Burford of Sherwood, Zane Burford of Queen Creek, Ariz., Erralee Cleveland of McMinnville and Paula Mooso of College Place; a sister, Gay Lerwill of Redding, Calif.; 18 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren and other relatives. Her husband died earlier.


Frank Perry Alexander Jr., 85, of Prineville and formerly of La Grande died Sept. 17 at a care center.The funeral will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday Sept. 21 at the LDS Church in Prineville, at S.E. Second and Idlewood streets. Burial will be at Juniper Haven Cemetery. Whispering Pines Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Mr. Alexander was born March 19, 1921, to Frank and Willie McKee Alexander in Wirt, Okla. He left school at the age of 14 upon the death of his father. He worked in the cotton fields and oil fields until he joined the Civilian Conservation Corp, and in 1940 served in the Army Air Corps. His last duty assignment was at the Pendleton Air Field.On Nov. 7, 1943, he married Adrienne See in La Grande. In 1950, the family moved to Prineville, where he was employed by the Crook County School District.He was a bus driver and custodian for 28 years. He also belonged to the Special Police for 25 years, and worked at local events and dances.

He enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping and being with his family. He made several trips to Oklahoma, and enjoyed watching high school sports especially baseball.

Survivors include his wife of Prineville; children and their spouses, JoAnne and Ron Thompson of Prineville, and Robert and Nancy Alexander of Albany; 11 grandchildren and 24 great-grandchildren.A daughter, Carol Hensley; a grandchild, Edward Alexander, three brothers and two sisters all died earlier.


Jean Hecht, 86, of Wilsonville and formerly of La Grande died April 11.

Mrs. Hecht was born April 20, 1920, to Drs. Joseph and Margaret Ingle in La Grande. She graduated from La Grande High School and earned bachelor's degree in English at the University of Oregon where she was a member of Chi Omega sorority. She earned a pilot's license and taught high school in Vale and Corvallis. She served in the Navy and was stationed in Lakehurst, N.J., where she married Irwin Hecht. The couple moved to Portland nine years ago to be closer to family.

She was an avid bridge player and a member of PEO and the First Presbyterian Church of Deerfield, Ill., where she served as a deacon. She was also involved in many other philanthropic organizations.

Survivors include her husband of Wilsonville; daughters, Pamela Irby of London, England, and Victoria Clemens of Portland; two grandchildren and a sister, Mary Hearing of La Grande. A daughter, Susan R. Hecht, died earlier.


Darrell Lee Rysdam, 74, of Elgin died Sept. 17 at his home. A celebration of life will begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday at the Elgin Stampede Hall.

Mr. Rysdam was born June 6, 1932, to Albert and Mildred Henningsen Rysdam at Cricket Flat in Elgin. He attended school in Elgin and on June 14, 1953, he married Norma DeLong in Elgin.

He was a member of the Elgin Stampeders, the Elks Lodge and the Eagles Lodge. He broke and trained many horses, and enjoyed hunting, fishing and horse racing. His greatest joy was his family and his ranch.

Survivors include his wife of Elgin; children and their spouses, Jerry and Stanna Rysdam, Jan and Rex Thompson and Joni and Jim Cant; and his mother-in-law, Orpha Plett, all of Elgin; seven grandchildren; six great grandchildren and other relatives.

Memorials may be made to the Mountain States Tumor Institute in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.


Louise Lockhart, 81, of Summerville died Sept. 13 at Grande Ronde Hospital. A celebration of life is planned for a later date. Loveland Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

Mrs. Lockhart was born April 26, 1925, to Samuel Schurit and Ethel Macklin VanderJagt in Bellingham, Wash. She attended Pepperdine College in Los Angles, Calif., and married Ray Lockhart on May 3, 1946, in Southgate, Calif.

She worked as a purchasing agent at Eastern Oregon University, and was active in her church. She was a member of the Grande Ronde Hospital Auxiliary and the Soroptimists, and enjoyed reading, music, swimming, gardening and being with her family.

Survivors include her husband of Summerville; a daughter, Christine Turner Gabbert, and her husband, Tom Gabbert, of Twin Falls, Idaho; a sister Marjorie Bush of Palmer, Alaska; and one grandchild. A brother, Peter, and son, Lance, died earlier.


Clada Fay Kiser, 80, of Joseph died Sept. 15. The funeral will begin at 2 p.m. Friday Sept. 22 at the Joseph United Methodist Church.

Mrs. Kiser was born June 20, 1926, to Clay and Ada Wooldridge King in Buhl, Idaho. The couple had a seed-potato farm for many years. He died in 1977, and she worked for several years at the U.S. Forest Service office in Enterprise. She was formerly a member of the Joseph PTA, the United methodist Church, the VFW Auxiliary, Beta Sigma Phi sorority and the International Order of Rainbow for Girls. She enjoyed following her grandchildren's athletic endeavors.

Survivors include children and their spouses, Rhonda and Mike Shirley, Christy and Bill Wells, Marianne and Dave Yost, and Cliff Clay and Wendy Kiser; several grandchildren; sisters, Susan Jacobsen of San Luis Obispo, Calif., and Gail Cane of Seattle; and other relatives. A sister, Judith Berman, died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Joseph Methodist Church or any charity in care of Bollman Funeral Home, 315 W. Main St., Enterprise.


Elizabeth Annetta "Betty" Leslie, 77, of La Grande died September 16 at Grande Ronde Hospital. At her request there will be no services.

Mrs. Leslie was born Dec. 18, 1928, to Carl P. and Myrtle Harmon Cloud in Elma, Wash. In 1969 she married Bruce Leslie. He died earlier. She was a member of the First Presbyterian Church.

Survivors include a son, Carl "Jake" Jacobsen of Gig Harbor, Wash.; three grandchildren; one great-grandchild; two brothers, Bob Cloud of Bellingham, Wash., and Hank Cloud of Oregon; and a sister, Barbara Jacobsen of Puyallup, Wash.

Memorials may be made to the First Presbyterian Church in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.


Della Reeder, 77, of Pahrump, Nev., and formerly of La Grande died Sept. 17. A memorial service is planned in Pahrump Saturday.

Mrs. Reeder was born to Bertha Gandy on Jan. 27, 1929, in Idaho. Her father died very early and she was raised by a stepfather, Wayne Gillis.

Mrs. Reeder went to first grade in La Grande, but grew up in Summerville. Her family remembers that the man who would be her husband, Wayne Reader, proposed to her in third grade.

She married Jay Reeder on May 16, 1945. The couple lived in La Grande until 1965 when they moved to California and then to Pahrump. She was an avid Dogers fan.

Survivors include her husband of Pahrump; children, Steve, Vernon and Virgil; a brother, Gene Gillis of La Grande; 13 grandchildren and several great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren. A son, Rodney; a daughter, Janice; and a sister, Juanita Allen, all died earlier.


Edith Laurel Shanks Roberts, 77, of La Grande died Sept. 19. At her request, there will be no funeral. Loveland Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

Mrs. Roberts was born June 11, 1929, in La Grande. She worked for the Oregon State Police in La Grande for many years before transferring to the OSP in Beaverton. She also worked for the Safeway Division Office until her retirement, when she returned to La Grande.

She enjoyed painting, playing the piano and gardening. Her love of animals led her to adopt several rescue pets.

Survivors include children and their spouses, Mark and Kelly Roberts of Denver, Colo., Chris and Shirley Roberts of La Grande, David and Jeanette Roberts of Woodland, Calif., and Lori and Steve McKay of Wickenburg, Ariz.; three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Memorials may be made to the Blue Mountain Humane Association, 3212 Highway 30, La Grande 97850.


Grace Brothers, 88, of La Grande died Sept. 20 at her home. At her request there will be no funeral.

Mrs. Brothers was born Dec. 11, 1917, in Rainier. She married Frank Brothers of Cove who died earlier.

Survivors include her daughters, Nola Colvin of Cove, and Janet Valade of La Grande; seven grandchildren; and four great grandchildren. A brother, George Bauman, died earlier.

Memorials may be made to Grande Ronde Hospital Hospice in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.


Richard John Blang, 75, of La Grande died Sept. 18 after a long illness. A celebration of life will begin at 1 p.m. Sept. 25 at Valley Fellowship Church, 507 Palmer St. Loveland Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

Mr. Blang was born Sept. 6, 1932, to John and Alice Wincher Blang in Humberg, Wis. He graduated from Alma Center Lincoln High School in 1950, and served in the Army in Korea. He married Alice Evelyn Felcan on April 28, 1958. They moved to La Grande in 1974. After a divorce he married Patricia Watkins-Hix on June 28, 1980. He worked for GTE, and retired in 1987. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and the outdoors.

Survivors incude his wife of La Grande; children, Pamela Dalling of Salt Lake City, Deborah Zentner of Idaho Falls, Idaho, and Terry Blang of Twin Falls, Idaho; a step-son, Cully Hix of Lewiston Idaho; two brothers, James Blang of St. Paul, Minn., and Larry Blang, of Blackfoot, Idaho; 10 grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. Two sisters, Pamela and Debbie, died as infants.


Kiah June Schmittle, infant daughter of Joshua Schmittle and Angella Thamert of Elgin, was born on April 2, 2006, and died on Sept. 21, 2006, after an extended illness. A private memorial service will be held. To sign the guest book or leave a condolence for the family on-line, visit: www.danielschapel.com.

In addition to her parents she is survived by a brother, Andres Colt Schmittle of Elgin, sister, Taera Lynn Harris of Pendleton, grandparents, Ted and Lou Ann Thamert of Elgin, Ed and Carol Schmittle of Elgin and Pamela Mossberger of Peoria, Ill., and other relatives.

Memorials may be made to Doernbecher Children's Hospital or the La Grande Pediatric Clinic in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St., La Grande 97850.


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