Glenn Slabaugh

La Grande


Glenn W. Slabaugh, 94, of La Grande died Dec. 11 at his home. Viewing will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Loveland Funeral Chapel, 1508 Fourth St.

A celebration of life will begin at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at the United Methodist Church, 1612 Fourth St., with the Rev. Janet Farrell officiating.

Mr. Slabaugh was born Nov. 17, 1909, to Warren W. and Anna A. Gensinger Slabaugh in Wenatchee, Wash. He graduated from high school in Chicago, Ill., in 1927, and graduated from Manchester College in Indiana in 1931, and from Miami University in Ohio in 1942. He did further post-graduate work at Oregon State and Cornell universities.

He married Ruth E. Bowman on Sept. 8, 1930, in Crown Point, Ind. He taught high school and junior college chemistry in Indiana, Michigan and Illinois before moving to La Grande in 1956 where he taught chemistry and physical science at Eastern Oregon College until he retired in 1976.

He enjoyed gardening, hiking in the mountains and playing the piano and organ. He was a member of the United Methodist Church where he served as a delegate to the Oregon Idaho Conference. He served as director of the church camp at Wallowa Lake and for a time he served on the La Grande Library Board.

Survivors include his wife of La Grande; sons and their spouses, James and Karen Slabaugh of Felton, Calif., Curtis and Betsy Slabaugh of Ironwood, Mich., Paul Slabaugh and Sandy Lee of Rockford, Ill., Richard and Jannan Slabaugh of Pullman, Wash., David Slabaugh and Dyvon Havens of Anacortes, Wash., and Steven Slabaugh of La Grande; a sister, Joy Grabow of Lansing, Mich.; 15 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren and five great-great-grandchildren. Three sisters, two brothers, a grandson and a daughter-in-law died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Glenn W. Slabaugh Eastern Oregon University Science Scholarship Fund in care of Loveland Chapel.

Mildred Cerato

Formerly of Joseph


Mildred Elva Cerato, of College Place, Wash., and formerly of Joseph died on her 88th birthday Dec. 11 at St. Mary Medical Center in Walla Walla.

A funeral service took place Monday at Joseph Baptist Church. Burial was at Prairie Creek Cemetery.

Mrs. Cerato was born Dec. 11, 1915, to George W. and Mary Ella Pearce Todd in Santa Ana, Calif. She married John A. Cerato in 1937, and the couple lived in Paradise, Calif.

After her husband's death in 1992 she moved to Joseph to be close to family. She lived there for 10 years and was a member of the Joseph Baptist Church, where she enjoyed mission work and at one time was president of the Women's Fellowship. She held women's weekly Bible studies in her home.

She enjoyed sewing, quilting and collecting porcelain dolls.

Survivors include her daughter, Venese Hampton of Joseph; a son, Jim Cerato of Sacramento, Calif.; four grandchildren; six great-grandchildren and a sister, Dorothy Durman of Hoquiam, Wash. Three brothers died earlier.

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

Dwayne Rushton

La Grande


Dwayne Eddie "Ponch" Rushton, 42, of La Grande died Dec. 12 in Boise following an automobile accident in Baker County. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday at Daniels Chapel of the Valley.

Mr. Rushton was born March 21, 1961, in The Dalles, and graduated from high school in Maupin. He served with the Army during the Gulf War and was very proud of his military service.

In 1986 he moved to Cove with his two sons and raised them by himself. He later moved to Ukiah and then to Stevenson, Wash. He moved to La Grande a year ago.

Mr. Rushton owned and operated the Designated Driver Taxi Service for a time and was an accomplished auto mechanic. He will be remembered for his generosity and helpfulness to others. Every year he donated his hair to the children at Doernbecher Children's Hospital and even got others to join in the donation.

Survivors include his wife, Melva Walker Rushton of La Grande; children, Anthony Rushton of Salem, Brett Walker, David Johnson and Buddy Johnson, all of La Grande, and Johnny Valincia of Echo; father and stepmother, Ed and Patricia Rushton of Goldendale, Wash.; one grandson; several nieces and nephews; and other relatives. He was preceded in death by his son, Jeffrey Rushton, in 2002.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Doernbecher Hospital in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St., La Grande 97850.

Velma Speckhart

Formerly of La Grande

A celebration of life for Velma Speckhart, 85, of Tigard and formerly of La Grande will begin at 2 p.m. Monday, at the Presbyterian Friendship Center, 1204 Spring Ave. Mrs. Speckhart died Oct. 13. Burial was in Quincy, Ill.

Edward Gekeler

Formerly of Elgin


Edward A. Gekeler, 61, of Socorro, N. M., and formerly of Elgin died Dec. 3 of natural causes. A celebration of life will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Church of The Nazarene in Elgin.

Mr. Gekeler was born Feb. 2, 1942, to James L. and Grace Goodwin Gekeler in Elgin. He graduated from Elgin High School in 1960 and served in the Army during the Viet Nam War. He farmed in the Elgin area before retiring to New Mexico in 1999. He enjoyed farming and the outdoors.

Survivors include an aunt, Dolly Madison of Shelton, Wash., an uncle, Charles Gooding of Hermiston, a best friend, Gene Hardy of Elgin, and other relatives. An uncle, John Gekeler, died earlier.

Albert Plumley

La Grande


Albert Cline Plumley, 75, of La Grande died Dec. 16 at St. Mary's Medical Center in Walla Walla. A memorial service will begin at 11 a.m. Monday, Dec. 22 at the La Grande Elks' Lodge.

Mr. Plumley was born Feb. 7, 1928, to Sherman and Ruth Stowers Plumley in Colden, W.V. He moved to La Grande in the early 1950s and later moved to Portland where he worked for Mitchell Brothers' Trucking for over 20 years. He married Myrtle Howell and after her death he married Dorothy Garrett in 1966 in Reno, Nev. He worked in Tacoma in the trucking industry for another 22 years, and the couple moved to La Grande when he retired two years ago.

He was a member and Lecturing Knight of the La Grande Elks' Lodge, and was formerly a member of the Teamsters' Union. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, and traveling in his RV. He had a gift for taking care of people.

Survivors include his wife of La Grande; sons, David, Larry and Douglas Plumley, all of Portland; seven grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; a brother, Roundy Plumley of La Grande; two sisters, Rhoda Bacon of Lewiston, Idaho, and Anne LeFores of Moscow, Idaho, and other relatives. Two sisters and three brothers died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Oregon Cancer Society or the Casey Eye Clinic in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.

Ervyl Schroeder



Ervyl Arminta Schroeder, 85, of Union died Dec. 17 at her home. A Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday Dec. 20 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church with Father Hank Albrecht officiating. Burial will be at the Union Cemetery. A celebration of life and reception will follow at the parish hall in Union.

Mrs. Schroeder was born Aug. 26, 1918, to Charles and Mable Woolf Pike in Mountain Home, Idaho. She attended Pleasant Grove School in Summerville and graduated from Union High School in 1936, then Eastern Oregon Normal School in 1938. She taught school in Wallowa County at Lost Prairie, Trout Creek and Minam. She married Frank Schroeder, and after World War II the couple settled in Union, where she taught second grade. She graduated from Eastern Oregon College in 1960, and retired in 1981.

She was a member of TOPS, a singles club and the Sacred Heart Altar Society. She enjoyed traveling, being with her family, hunting, fishing, hiking and camping. She was very caring and compassionate.

Survivors include children and their spouses, Fran and Jay Potter of Palmer, Alaska, Chris and Jim Harris of Marsing, Idaho, and Scott and Cathy Schroeder of Union; four grandchildren; five great-grandchildren and other relatives. Her husband and two brothers, Robert and Warren Pike, all died earlier.

Memorials may be made to the Bobcat Foundation, the Bobcat Athletic Complex or the GRH Home Care Hospice in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St.

Ruby Itha Pratt



Ruby Itha Pratt, 75, of Enterprise died Dec. 18 after a long illness. The funeral will begin at 10:30 a.m. Monday at the Enterprise Christian Church.

Mrs. Pratt was born Feb. 6, 1928, to Arthur and Ruby Wright in Moscow, Idaho. She graduated from high school in Genesee, Idaho, and attended both the University of Idaho and later a nursing school in Spokane. On Nov. 11, 1955, she married Delbert W. Pratt at the family farm on Alder Slope.

She was a homemaker and took great pride in the display of flowers in her yard. She led a 4-H group for handicapped children for 19 years. She was given the Helen Keller Award by the Enterprise and Joseph Lions Club.

Survivors include her husband of Enterprise; children and their spouses, Lillian and Doug Edmonds of Philomath, Beverly Pratt of Salem, Susan and David Chriss of Anchorage, Alaska, Joyce Pratt of Enterprise and John and Rebecca Pratt of Salem; and nine grandchildren.

Memorials may be made to the Enterprise Christian Church or the Emmanuel School of Religion in care of Bollman Funeral Home, 315 W. Main St., Enterprise.

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