Obituaries for February 18, 2013

By Observer Upload February 18, 2013 09:41 am
Jones, Skovlin



Farrell David Jones

La Grande



Farrell David Jones, 69, of La Grande died Feb. 14 at his residence. His funeral service will begin at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Loveland Funeral Chapel in La Grande.

Farrell was born on July 11, 1943, in Malad, Idaho, to Neil and Edna (Edwards) Jones. He enlisted in the U.S. Army on March 10, 1965, serving in Fairbanks, Alaska, where he worked on Nike missiles. He was honorably discharged on Dec. 12, 1966.

Farrell’s entire career was at Western States Equipment for more than 40 years. He started out as a cleanup boy just out of high school in Pocatello, Idaho. He later advanced to mechanic and then service mechanic. In 1971, he became the service manager for the La Grande/John Day area. Then in 1976, Farrell accepted a job as salesman and moved to McCall, Idaho. In 1991, he relocated to Walla Walla, Wash. He retired on Oct. 15, 2001.

On Aug. 29, 1969, Farrell married Jeanette Ellis Haggerty in Pocatello. He took on the responsibility of raising Jeanette’s five sons: Richard, Terry, Kevin, Kelly and Michael.

Farrell is well known for taking pride in the appearance of his homes. His yards were always a “showplace,” and his gardens fed most of his neighbors. He also enjoyed hunting and fishing, and then later his interest turned to building and flying model airplanes. After retirement, Farrell and Jeanette enjoyed winters in Parker, Ariz., on the Colorado River.

Farrell is survived by his wife, Jeanette Jones of La Grande; brother, Ray Neil Jones of Pocatello, and sister, Janice Jones Petersen of Manti, Utah; stepsons and their spouses, Richard and Rosalie Haggerty of Ledyard Conn., Terry and Yvonne Haggerty of La Grande, Kevin and Carrie Haggerty of Kennewick, Wash., Kelly and Lonni Haggerty of La Grande and Michael and Beth Haggerty of Kennewick.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Neil and Edna Jones. 

In lieu of flowers, Farrell suggested contributions to the local humane society.



Jon Skovlin




Jon Matthew Skovlin, 82, of Cove, died Feb. 14 in La Grande. A celebration of life will be held later in the spring.

Jon was born Oct. 31, 1930, to Adolph and Mildred Bumgardner Skovlin at Colfax, Wash. The family lived in Palouse until 1945 when they moved to Enterprise, where he graduated from high school in 1948. His summers were spent working on sheep and cattle ranches in the canyons. Seasonal work on the Wallowa National Forest led him to study forest, range and wildlife management.

Upon graduation from Oregon State College in fish and game, Jon married Donna McDaniel at Wallowa on June 22, 1952. That fall, they traveled to Fort Benning, Ga., where Jon completed officer’s and Ranger training. He was detailed to Fort Lewis, Wash., and reassigned to Korea.

After his return, the couple reunited for a summer on the Stanley fire lookout in the Wallowa Mountains. In the fall of 1954, Jon studied rangeland management at Utah State in Logan. He later earned a master’s of forestry degree at the University of Idaho and received a permanent appointment with the research branch of the U.S. Forest Service. He worked at the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range west of
La Grande, studying the long-term effects of cattle grazing on Blue Mountain forested summer range. 

The grazing study was completed in 1967, at which time he took a three-year contract with the United Nations in Kenya on a project to help convert pastoralists from subsistence livestock grazing to commercial ranching. Donna and the family of four youngsters accompanied him to Kenya. 

 In 1971, Jon returned as a wildlife research biologist at the Forest and Range Sciences Laboratory in La Grande, but continued to take short-term assignments abroad. He retired from the Forest Service in 1981. In 1982, he and his wife returned to Kenya, where he consulted with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development, training college graduates at the National Range Research Station. 

After returning to Cove in the mid-1980s, he did short-term consulting and contracted several long-term landscape change photography projects. In the early 1990s, the couple started Reflections Publishing Co. and wrote several books on local and regional history.

Jon was a long-time member of the Society of American Forestry, the Society for Range Management and The Wildlife Society. He and Donna enjoyed attending their annual meetings, presenting papers and then traveling for adventure in far away places. Together they visited and explored more than 50 countries. At home, they took special pleasure in back-country travel with family and friends. Jon was an ardent outdoorsman, enjoying work with his horses and mules. He knew most every creek, lake and trail in Union and Wallowa counties and also the grasses, shrubs and trees that grew near them.

Jon is survived by his wife, Donna, of Cove; son, Kirk and wife, Laura, Enterprise; and daughters, Lisa and husband Tom, Elko, Nev.; Meleah and husband, Scott, Corvallis; and Kelly, La Grande. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and sister, Sandra and husband, Jackson Bosley, Austin, Texas, and brother, Richard and wife, Judy, Sedona, Ariz.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory may be made to Grande Ronde Hospital Hospice, the Red Cross or any local history group.

Loveland Funeral Chapel is handling arrangements.