Obituaries for March 29, 2013

By Observer Upload March 29, 2013 10:56 am
Lowe, Wickoff, Wilson, Philbrook, Macklin


Bette M. Lowe

La Grande

Bette M. Lowe, 81, of 

La Grande, died March 28 at a local care facility. Arrangements will be announced later by Daniels~Knopp Funeral, Cremation & Life Celebration Center.



June Marie Wyckoff


June Marie Wyckoff, 90, of Wallowa, died March 27 at Wallowa Memorial Hospital. Arrangements will be announced later by Daniels~Knopp Funeral, Cremation & Life Celebration Center. 



Mary Lou Wilson

La Grande


Mary Lou Wilson, 85, of La Grande, died March 26 at her home. A celebration of life will begin at 1 p.m. Monday at Daniels~Knopp Funeral, Cremation & Life Celebration Center, 1502 Seventh St. in La Grande.

Mrs. Wilson was born on Jan. 26, 1928, the daughter of Odden Lee and Virginia (Rinehart) Dickens in John Day.  

She was active in music including choir, band playing clarinet and playing piano in church and for other groups while growing up. 

In 1945, she moved to
La Grande to attend Eastern Oregon College instead of attending her senior year in high school.  

While at Eastern, she met Howard Wilson. They fell in love and were married on Dec. 29, 1946.  Howard played cymbals with the Drum and Bugle Corps and they traveled with that group. She also became active with the Blue Mtn. Juniors Extension Homemakers. In 1955, they moved to a home in Fruitdale, farmed 10 acres and raised sheep, cattle, chickens, horses, dogs and cats. Even though she suffered chronic migraines, she was very active. They raised three children, and she was active with PTA, serving as secretary and president, and was a 4-H Leader in sewing and knitting for 15 years.  

She enjoyed camping, gardening, canning, cooking, sewing, knitting, crocheting, needlepoint and the like. 

In 1962, she went to work at the Demonstration Library until 1963, when she went to work at Eastern Oregon College as secretary in the Registrar’s Office. She and Howard joined the Maverick’s Horse Club and were active members.  

In 1967, she went to work as secretary at the Union County Extension Service and retired from there in 1976. They enjoyed square dancing, and she made many square dance outfits: petticoats, dresses and matching shirts. They traveled with the Square Dancers to Hawaii, Reno, Oregon State Festival, Idaho, Washington and Canada.  

In 2002, they sold their home in Fruitdale and moved to Grande Ronde Retirement Residence. She joined the Red Hat Society.  In 2003, she lost her loving husband of 56 years.  

In 2004, she moved to Moses Lake, Wash., to be near her daughter and her family. In 2007, she moved back to the Grande Ronde Retirement Residence. 

She enjoyed reading, playing bingo and going to local concerts and plays.  

In 2009, she moved to Willow Creek Terrace in Heppner, again to be near her daughter.  In 2011, she again returned to Grande Ronde Retirement Residence on the assisted living side.

Survivors include her children and their spouses, Ronald and Marta (Mikkalo)Wilson of Arlington, Nancy and Gerry Arnson of Heppner, and Steven and Danelle Wilson of La Grande; nine grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and other relatives.  

She was preceded in death by her sister, Virginia Lee Wilson, and her granddaughter, Megan Anne Wilson.

Memorial contributions may be made to the 4-H in care of Daniels~Knopp. 


Ronald E. Philbrook



Ronald Edward Philbrook, 73, died March 26 surrounded by family at his home in Wallowa.

A private graveside service will be held for the family. A celebration of life will be held from noon to 3 p.m. April 6 at the McClelland Arts Center in Longview, Wash., and a celebration will also be held April 13 in Wallowa.

He was born Sept. 8, 1939, in Wauna to Edward and Myrtle (Larson) Philbrook.

He attended school in Rainier, and then served in the Air Force from 1958 to 1962.

Ron met the love of his life, Maureen, at the Busy Bee Restaurant in Rainier. They fell in love and were married June 4,1966, in Kelso, Wash.

He worked as a longshoreman for 38 years, volunteering for ILWU No. 21 as secretary/treasurer for nine years and health and welfare officer for 10 years.

Ron and Maureen owned and operated the Homestead Restaurant/Bar from 1975 to 1979 in Wallowa.

He volunteered on the budget committee for the Rainier School District and then was elected to the Rainier School Board for four years.

He spent nine years on the Board of Directors for Lower Columbia Longshoremen’s Federal Credit Union.

Ron and Maureen retired in January 2000 and moved to Wallowa. He volunteered for the city of Wallowa Budget Committee, was elected to the city council, and then elected mayor.

He was a member of the American Legion and Masonic Lodge.

He was a skilled carpenter, talented at remodeling, and an accomplished gardener, enjoying nature.

He was devoted to those he loved, a thoughtful friend and good listener.

He is survived by his wife of 46 years, Maureen (Kirk) Philbrook at home in Wallowa.

Survivors include his children, John Philbrook of Longview; Karin and Brian Hogg of Longview; Amy and Keith Wellens of Wallowa, from a previous marriage; Randy and Jeanette Philbrook of Vancouver; Diane and Ken Grady of Smith River, Calif. Also, sister Loretta and Gary Viuhkola of Clatskanie; brother Richard and Melissa Philbrook of Kelso; 11 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Ellen Diane Philbrook.


James Wesley Mackin



James Wesley Mackin, 73, of Joseph died March 26 at Wallowa Memorial Hospital surrounded by his three children after a long battle with cancer.  

A graveside service is planned for 1 p.m. Saturday at the Joseph Cemetery followed by a celebration of life at the Enterprise Elks Club. 

He was born April 9, 1939, in Moscow, Idaho, to Burnadette McGuire Mackin and Orval Mackin. He attended school in Walla Walla and Dayton, Wash., graduating from Dayton High School in 1958. 

He attended Washington State University and went on to graduate with a degree in animal husbandry from California Polytechnic University at San Luis Obispo, Calif., in 1964.

In 1961, he married Sally Talbott and they had three children together. They later divorced. 

After college he went to work at Bar-S Feedlot in Sunnyside, Wash. He then worked as a ranch manager at Selah, Wash. 

In 1969, he came to Wallowa County to take up cattle ranching and raise his family. He worked several years for C&B Feedlot, where he managed their yearling cattle operation in Wallowa County. 

He was a longtime volunteer of organizations including Wallowa County Fair, local 4-H and FFA chapters, Chief Joseph Days Rodeo as well as many other civic organizations. He was also a local weather station reporter for the United States Geological Survey for 10 years. 

In 1978, he married Maxine Marr. They enjoyed camping, the company of friends and time spent with family. They enjoyed many happy years together until her passing in 2007. 

Survivors include Sally Talbott; daughters, Jill (Mark) Moncrief of Enterprise and Patty (Pat) of Nezperce, Idaho; son, John (Susie) Mackin of Idaho Falls, Idaho; stepsons, Shane (Shelli) Marr of Seattle and Todd (Heather) Marr of Enterprise; seven grandchildren; and sister, Sharon (Gary) Shaw of Wenatchee, Wash. 

Memorial donations can be made to Wallowa Memorial Hospital in care of the cancer/chemotherapy department in Enterprise.