Bonita Master 1945-2014

Posted on April 2nd in Obituaries

Bonita “Kiwi” H. Masters, 69, of Burns, passed away March 18.

A local service has been held. A service in New Zealand will be held at a later date.

Baird Funeral Home of Bend was in charge of funeral arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in the name of “Kiwi” at any US Bank.

OBIT Johnson webMel, (Johnny as some of his family and friends called him), passed away peacefully at his home in Burns March 21; his family was at his side.

Mel was born on Oct.10, 1922, in Clayton, N.M., where he attended elementary school, and assisted in the local store. His stories tell of good memories with the Hopi Indians and their rituals. In 1943, at age 18, he and a friend enlisted in the U.S. Army. He served in various assignments during this period, including as the athletic instructor for the Presidio, Calif. base. He received an honorable discharge on May 20, 1946, and was also awarded a WWII Victory Medal, American Campaign Medal and a Good Conduct Medal. Following his military service, he began employment with the U.S. Postal Service and advanced in the organization quickly.

Mel and Norma Jean Wilkins were married on May 15, 1946, in Reno, Nev. They started their family in the Palo Alto, Calif., area. They were married for almost 68 years at the time of his passing. Their life together shared many adventures and experiences, including a family reunion in New Mexico, a trip to Alaska, and celebration of their 50th wedding anniversary at Delintment Lake with family. The stories and memories are many and varied. When you listened to Mel relate his stories, they all included his wife (companion) and the hand of the Lord.

Mel was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and he and Jean were sealed for all time and eternity in the Oakland Temple. One of his favorite assignments in the church was serving with the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts; he was awarded the Silver Beaver Award, and served in scouting virtually his entire adult life.

Mel was very sports-minded, and really enjoyed golfing, particularly with his friends. He also enjoyed fishing, baseball, and football. At one time, he was as an avid “rock hounder,” and did quite a bit of lapidary work. He always had to have a project.

He and Jean lived in a number of places prior to moving to Burns. Some of these places included Menlo Park, Redwood City and Sunnyvale, Calif. They moved with their three children to Southern Oregon in 1963, and purchased the Three Link Ranch, living there for eight years. After the sale of this ranch, they lived in Shady Cove and Medford. Mel and Jean moved to Burns in 1977, where they spent a number of years restoring their more than 100-year-old home.

During his time in Burns, Mel served on the city council and was very active with the police and fire departments. He was instrumental in making the arrangements to combine the city offices. Mel also served as the president of the Harney County Cancer Society for about 17 years with very fond memories and success. He was also a member of the local Elks and Lions clubs. He believed in serving, and had a charitable heart.

He is survived by his wife and eternal companion, Norma Jean Wilkins Johnson; his daughter, Paula Jean Chambers, and her husband, John R. Chambers of Burns; nine grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his father, Floyd Johnson; mother, Mary Graham-Johnson; all of his siblings; two sons, Darrell Ruland and Richard Alan; and two grandchildren.

Services to celebrate his life will be held on Tuesday April 1, at 11 a.m. in the chapel of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Hines. The service will be followed by a luncheon and socializing.

If desired, donations may be sent to local charities, such as Home Health, Hospice or the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center.

OBIT Landin webIris Landin, 79, passed away Feb. 11 at her home following an on-going battle with cancer and heart problems.

Iris was born in 1934 in Lynden, Wash., to John and Hazel Boyd. After graduating from high school, Iris enlisted in the Navy. This is where she met and married Theodore G. Landin. After three children and a military move to the Air Force Radar Base in Burns, the two divorced.

Iris made Burns her home, where she worked many jobs, including waiting tables, cooking and typing menus. Then, she was hired on at Edward Hines Lumber Mill. She worked at the mill for 27 years before being forced into early retirement.

That didn’t stop her, however. She opened a business downtown, High Desert Sound, and later on she started a second-hand store in Hines, which she ran for several years.

Iris also, in her downtime, made sure that she put a headstone on as many children’s graves as she could. At least 10 graves have a stone that reads, “Granny Loves You.”

Iris is survived by  her brother, Dale Nordby of South Carolina; daughters, Nanette “Bunny” Winter of Burns, and Ivy F. Conger of Ontario; son, Ted G. Landin of Prineville; grandchildren, Amy Cooper, Andrea Reason, Jamey Landin, Jeff Conger, Brandon, Brian and Seth Landin; several great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her mother, Hazel Nordby of Ferndale, Wash.; father, John Boyd of Sunnyside, Wash.; brothers, Terry Boyd of Bellingham, Wash., and Louis Nordby of Ferndale, Wash.; granddaughter, Natasha Langston of Burns; and great-grandson, Anthony D. McVey of Burns.

Iris will be remembered for her love of animals, children, family, and her country.

A military burial will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, March 20, at the Burns Cemetery, followed by a family and friends potluck at the Valley Golf Club in Hines.


OBIT Rossberg webHarold Eugene Rossberg, 77, passed away on Feb. 26, at River Valley Care Center from an unfortunate accident at his home in Yuba City, Calif. He was a resident in the Yuba-Sutter area for 38 years.

He was born in Tucson, Ariz. in 1936, the son of John and Zelda, and had a brother, Kenny Rossberg and sister-in-law, Beulah. Harold grew up in Crane, on the family cattle ranch. Shortly after graduating from high school, he joined the United States Air Force in 1955. After enlisting, his first mission was stationed at Mildenhall, England where he, shortly thereafter, met his future wife, Elizabeth “Liz” Josephine McLoughlin from Tralee, Ireland. They were married a year later. From there, Harold was stationed at several bases overseas and in the United States.

Harold had a great love of the outdoors; everywhere he lived, he took his family on great adventures around the world and saw some pretty amazing country. Moving back to the United States in 1976, he came to Beale Air Force Base to retire after 23 years as a TSgt., receiving a Commendation for Meritorious Service. At that time, Harold and Liz bought a home in Linda, Calif. After retirement, Harold went to Yuba College and earned his AA degree, then received his real estate license and became a part-time substitute teacher with the Marysville School District with his wife, Liz. From there, they both retired with the school district.

Harold was a member and past president of the Linda Lions Club for many years. After the second retirement, the couple sold their home and traveled full time in their motor home — with car in tow  — and became camp hosts at various locations along the West Coast, enjoying life to the fullest.

Harold and his stories will be sorely missed, as he was always a happy, fun-loving person, with a great personality, a love and agility for life, and millions of miles traveled.

Love you bunches, Dad, We will miss you dearly and will always remember the places we have lived and have seen as a family, and beyond. Your children and their families will love you “to the moon and back.”

Harold is survived by his two daughters and one son, Michelle (Ray) Ziegenmeyer, Lisa (Robby) Shogren, and Paul Rossberg; grandchildren, Chad (Sonia) Chavez, Todd, Logan Ziegenmeyer; one brother, Kenny (Beulah) Rossberg Lockard; great-nieces and nephews, Lilyann, Charity Rossberg, and Gavin and Colby Lockard.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Zelda Rossberg; his wife, Liz Rossberg; and David Rossberg.

A memorial Service will be conducted Friday, March 14 at 2 p.m. at the Sutter Cemetery with military honors, provided by the Beale Air Force Base Honor Guard, and under the direction of the Neptune Society of Chico, Calif., and Sutter Cemetery.

The family suggests donations be made to Sutter North Hospice, 400 Plumas Blvd., Ste. 115, Yuba City, Calif. 95991.

Condolences may be sent to:


OBIT Hoyt webHoyt Farnsworth Wilson, 71, passed away Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013, at the St. Charles Medical Center in Bend, following a sudden illness. He was a longtime resident of the Mann Lake Ranch on the eastern side of Steens Mountain southeast of Burns.

Hoyt grew up in Portland. He graduated from the Hotchkiss School, a college preparatory school in Lakeville, Conn., and then went on to graduate from Yale University in 1964. In that year, Hoyt and Mary (nee Miller) married at the Hinson Memorial Baptist Church in Portland. He was attending the graduate business school at the University of Oregon when they moved to the ranch to help Hoyt’s parents run the operation.

Hoyt served on the local school board for many years, and was president for a time. He was also active in the local Farm Bureau, and served on the Steens Mountain Advisory Committee for more than 10 years. He also served for many years on the board of the Package Containers Company of Canby.

Hoyt was a steadfast and loyal husband, father, brother and friend. He gave pleasure and support to all with his unpretentious presence and ready wit. His love for his family knew no bounds. He will be greatly missed.

Hoyt is survived by his wife of 49 years, Mary; daughter, Katharine “Kali” of Portland; son, Hoyt, and wife, Dana, and their children, Kate and Sofia of Bend; and daughter, Alexa, and husband, John Maley, and their children, Eli and Oscar, who reside on the Mann Lake Ranch.  He is also survived by his four siblings, Judy Child, Gregg Wilson, Genevieve Laxague, and Mardi Chase, and 11 nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert Wilson and Constance Ickes; stepfather, Millard Ickes; stepmother, Barbara Pooley Wilson; and sister, Katharine.

Hoyt’s ashes will be returned to Steens Mountain at a later date with the family present. Contributions may be made to a Harney County charity of one’s choice, or the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association.


Thomas J. “Tom” Davis, 98, of Boise, formerly of Cascade, passed away Sunday, March 9, at a Boise, Idaho, hospital. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 13, with Rosary Vigil service starting at 1 p.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Boise.  A graveside service will be held Friday, March 14, at 11 a.m. at the Margaret Cemetery in Cascade, Idaho.

Arrangements are at Summers Funeral Homes, Boise Chapel.


Death notice — Jose Alzuri

Posted on March 12th in Obituaries

Jose Alzuri, 66, of Bend, and former resident of Burns, passed away March 4 in Bend.

A memorial service will be held in Spain at a later date.


OBIT Baird workedRuby Ione (Oard) Baird passed away Feb. 26.

She was born April 3, 1923, to Charles and Bertha Oard in Albritton, and was the last remaining sibling of 10 children.

Ruby met her life companion and soul mate (Emory Hale Baird) after he arrived by rail in Crane on his way to his future job at the Sod House during the Civil Conservation Corps relief program.

Ruby and Hale were married in Burns May 17, 1942. Ruby became an Army Air Corps wife and moved about the West Coast with Hale during his active-duty military period.

After Hale returned back to the States, they moved to Bonneville, when Hale became the purchasing agent for Bonneville Dam.

But Ruby missed and longed for the sage and juniper of Harney County, so they returned to Burns and entered a hardware business with Ruby’s sister, Ethyl, and brother-in-law, “Jinks” Harris.

They retired in 1981 and enjoyed the “snowbird” migration to Arizona and back during the winter and early spring months for the next 20-plus years.

Ruby enjoyed hunting, fishing and the “Great Outdoors,” as well as coffee with her many “special friends.”

She is survived by her four children, Phyllis, Dick, Jim and Beverly; 12 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; and six great-great-grandchildren.

Ruby was proceeded in death by her husband, Hale, in 2010.

There are no services planned at this time. A celebration of her life will be announced at a later date.


Margy Cyphers 1951-2014

Posted on March 5th in Obituaries

CyphersbwMargy Cyphers passed away Feb. 24 in Bend following a year-long illness.

Margy was born at Harney County Hospital Jan. 29, 1951. She was the third of four children born to Arthur L. (Bill) and Dixie D. Runnels of Burns.

Margy attended Burns Grade School and graduated from Burns Union High School in 1969, then attended Oregon College of Education in Monmouth for two years. She transferred to Treasure Valley Community College, where she completed nurses’ training, working summers as a dispatcher. Upon graduation, she moved to Salem to work at Salem Memorial Hospital and become certified as a respiratory technician. She then worked in this capacity at St. Charles Hospital in Bend for five years.

Margy’s next move was to The Dalles to work at Columbia Basin Nursing Home. During this time, she met her future husband, Dick Cyphers. Margy and Dick were married Nov. 26, 1983, in Dufur Methodist Church.

Dick and Margy then lived in Portland for two years, where Dick completed his education. This period was especially meaningful to Margy, as she was able to spend time with her beloved sister, Marcy Selid, Marcy’s husband, Mark, and their two children. The Cyphers returned to The Dalles in 1988. In 1995, they welcomed their son, Peter.

In 1997, the family relocated to Burns to be nearer Margy’s parents. Margy spent the rest of her working life at Harney District Hospital and High Desert Medical Center, where her skills and compassionate care were highly regarded.

Since 2012, Margy suffered from respiratory illness, which became worse when she and Peter were on a church mission in Mexico.

Margy grew up in First (Faith) Baptist Church in Burns, where she accepted Jesus as her savior.  She spent her life serving and caring for others. She loved planting flowers, reading, doing latchhook and embroidery, and going to garage sales. She especially enjoyed the Runnels’ annual family trips, including to Yellowstone Park, the Wallowas, the Oregon coast, and an Alaskan cruise.

She is survived by husband, Dick; son, Peter; mother, Dixie; brother, Dick (Dawna) of Nyssa; stepchildren, Ryan Cyphers and Mandy Cyphers; Marcy’s children, Stephanie Ostrom and Chris Selid; Dick Runnels’ children, Nicole Kellogg and Toby Runnels; and many nephews, nieces and cousins.

Margy was preceded in death by her brother, Steve (1970); sister, Marcy (1991); father, Bill (2007); and brother-in-law, Mark Selid (2011).

The family expresses special gratitude to Margy’s cousins who helped so much during the past year of her illness: Jo Katagi of Vancouver, B.C., and Charles and Judi Bailey of Vancouver, Wash.

Donations in Margy’s memory may be made to Faith Baptist Church, Harney County Senior Center, or Harney County Home Health, c/o LaFollette’s Chapel, P.O. Box 488, Burns, OR 97720.

A memorial service for Margy Cyphers will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 8, at Faith Baptist Church. LaFollette’s Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

OBIT KayC Pickthorne PhotoKayC Pickthorne, 59, passed away Feb. 18 in her home, due to complications associated with renal failure.

KayC was born Sept. 19, 1954, in Council, Idaho, to Kathryn Phippen and Gene LaFay. She attended high school in Nyssa. After graduation, she pursued an English degree at Oregon State University, but graduated with a degree in business. While at Oregon State, she met Bruce Pickthorne, her husband of 39 years. June 15, 2014, would have marked the couple’s 40th wedding anniversary. Bruce and KayC were married in Ontario, and then moved to Portland, where she worked for Union Pacific Railroad, and then the Portland Teacher’s Union, while Bruce managed the Portland Livestock Market.

On July 4, 1982, Bruce and KayC were blessed with a daughter, Katie Anne. In 1986, the family moved to Harney County, where they lived for the next 20 years. During that time, KayC worked for Frenchglen Millworks and in retail sales. When her husband retired from the Bureau of Land Management, Bruce and KayC retired to Rufus.

KayC was a loving wife, mother, and daughter; she was also very active in helping to organize community events and local fundraising efforts. She regularly donated to the local animal and homeless shelters, which were among the causes she passionately supported. She enjoyed reading, fishing, gardening, and spending time with her family. She was a fantastic cook, and always made sure everyone was well fed.

KayC is survived by her husband, Bruce W. Pickthorne of Rufus; daughter, Katie A. Pickthorne of Hood River; mother, Kathryn (Kay) Phippen of Boise, Idaho; brother, Kelly LaFay of Florence, Fla.; and many friends and family.

She was preceded in death by her father, Gene LaFay; and brother, Kip LaFay.

KayC will be remembered for her thoughtfulness, kindness, love of animals, and appreciation of life. She embraced all challenges with grace and commitment. She set a shining example of how to live life, and will be greatly missed.

The burial will be held Friday, March 7, at 1 p.m. at Evergreen Cemetery, 1155 South Park Blvd., in Ontario. Immediately following will be a Celebration of Life gathering at the Clarion Hotel, 1249 Tapadera Ave., in Ontario.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to your local humane society or homeless shelter.


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