L. Glenn Hays 1922-2015

Posted on March 11th in Obituaries

L. Glenn Hays, 92, former English teacher and wrestling coach at Burns High School, passed away March 3 in Aurora, Colo., of natural causes.

Glenn was born Dec. 28, 1922, in Longdale, Okla., to Hobart and Pearl (McCormick) Hays. In 1941, he dropped out of high school and enlisted in the U.S. Army. Later, he took part in the D-Day invasion of Europe. Once the war was over, he completed high school in Hennessey, Okla. There he met his future wife, Beverly Baines.  They were married in 1947.

After finishing college at Oklahoma A & M College (now Oklahoma State University), he and Beverly moved to Oregon, where Glenn taught and coached at Nehalem, Scappoose, Beaverton, Burns (1957-1963) and Bend high schools. He was a master teacher and a successful coach. His best wrestling squad, at Burns, finished second in the state in 1962.  His winning teams sparked a resurgence in Hilander athletics that continues to this day.

Glenn and his family lived in Bend from 1963-1993. Following Beverly’s death, he eventually settled in Aurora, Colo.

He is survived by his son, Rev. Vance Hays, of Portland; his daughter, Dixie Hays Sexton, of Bend; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Beverly, in 1993; and his brother, Darrell, in 2014.

Disposition was by cremation. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 28, at Parklane Christian Reformed Church in Portland. Memories and condolences may be sent to vancehays@juno.com.


Viola Jennings, 99, a longtime resident of Burns, passed away March 8 in Richfield, Wash.

A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, March 13, at Holy Family Catholic Church in Burns.

A full obituary will follow at a later date.


Kathy Johnson, 54, passed away March 6 at her home in Burns.

A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 14, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Hines.

A full obituary will follow at a later date.


OBIT Bates webRonald Edwin Bates, 81, passed away Feb. 25 at home in Hines, following complications from cancer.

Ron was born May 29, 1933, in Caldwell, Idaho, to Ed and June (Pitkin) Bates. He was the oldest of three children. His family moved to Vale, from Emmett, Idaho, when he was 3 years old. He attended school in Vale from first grade through high school, with the exception of attending one year of school in Twin Falls, Idaho.

Ron loved the outdoors.  He grew up fishing and swimming in the river with his brother and cousins, and climbing a mountain near town looking for lizards, porcupines, snakes and other critters. He has referred to these childhood experiences as some of the most enjoyable times of his life.

Sports were Ron’s life in high school. He was an accomplished athlete. He played on the first team in baseball all four years of high school. Ron also played on the first teams in basketball and football three years each. He led the league (which consisted of nine schools) in punting in football, and won the punting contest at a football jamboree with a 60-yard kick from scrimmage. He led the league in scoring in basketball as a senior.

After graduating from Vale High School in 1951, Ron studied fish and game management for two years at Oregon State College in Corvallis. He then served three years in the United States Army and is a veteran of the Korean War. Ron also spent time at bases in Maryland, New Mexico, and Washington.

Ron returned to Vale after his time in the service.  He accepted a job as deputy county clerk in the Malheur County Clerk’s office. This is where he met Deanna Marx, also an employee in the office. Ron and Deanna had the unusual opportunity to issue their own marriage license, and were married Dec. 30, 1958, in Vale.

Ron received a job offer from the Land Title Insurance Company in 1964.  He worked in the Ontario office for 18 months. In July 1965, the company sent him to manage the branch office in Burns. He continued to manage the Burns office until his retirement.

Ron and Deanna are the parents of six children.  Ron continued to enjoy the outdoors while raising his family, taking them fishing and camping. He took his family on a two-week vacation every summer.  Camping along the Oregon Coast and going to Disneyland were family favorites. Picnics at Idlewild, followed by taking a walk with Grandpa, were highlights for his grandchildren.

Ron retired from the Land Title Insurance Company in 1995. Deanna closed the doors of her in-home day care business in 1996. Retirement brought the opportunity for Ron and Deanna to spend six months of the year in St. George, Utah. They enjoyed the warmer weather during the winter months, and walked many miles throughout the years along the Virgin River Trail.  They continued to make St. George their second home until 2014, at which time Ron was too sick to make the trip.

Ron was a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served as the bishop of the Burns Ward congregation for more than seven years. During his service as bishop, he chose the building site upon which the Burns Ward chapel currently stands.

Ron is survived by his wife of 56 years, Deanna; children, Marci, Gary, Veito, Debbie (John Sevy), Diane, and Gene (Becky); and 10 grandchildren. He is also survived by siblings, Larry Bates (Marilyn) and Linda (Jerry Maylin).

Ron was preceded in death by his parents, Ed Bates and June Pitkin Bates Croner.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 7, at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Burns. A viewing will be held earlier that morning at 9:30 a.m. at the church building. Interment will be at the Burns Cemetery.

Contributions in Ron’s memory may be made to the National Park Foundation.


OBIT C.Walker webCharles James Walker passed away Feb. 25, 2014, as the result of trauma he suffered from an accidental fall.

Charles was born Oct. 13, 1951, in Burns. He was the eldest child of Charles Ira and Lorraine Walker’s six boys. His passing, one year ago, was kept private due to the family’s wishes.

Charles enjoyed many outdoor activities, and as a youth he participated in football, however, he suffered from severe asthma attacks which would eventually limit his physical activities.

His many hobbies included hunting, fishing, and caring for and raising family pets. During the early 1970s, while in Harney County, he purchased a horse named Blaze, and he would often spend weekends riding and caring for his horse at a local rancher’s home.

He had a passion for music and poetry. He taught himself to play the flute, and enjoyed the title of “lead vocals” for numerous rock and roll bands, which he shared membership with during the late 60s and 70s.

He was a 1970 graduate of Burns Union High School, and upon graduation, enrolled at Central Oregon Community College. From there, he traveled to Portland, and would later return to Hines where he was an employee for Edward Hines Lumber Co.

In 1975, he moved to Hayward, Calif., and worked professionally as a bartender, as well as a customer service associate for numerous hardware stores. He enjoyed living in California, and returned to Oregon only briefly during the last 40 years of his life, most recently living in John Day, with his brother, Mickey, prior to returning to Hayward.

In 1977, he met his future wife, Jackie Martinelli-Haley. The two of them were married Sept. 18, 1977, and, with Jackie’s daughter, Linda, they enjoyed their family life in the Bay Area.

At the time of his death, Charles was a part-time employee for Foothill Hardware of Hayward, Calif.

Charles had many friends, and he was truly a child of the 60s. He found comfort in music, and he had a passion for classic movies. He was a loving, caring husband and father, and his compassion toward others is certainly missed by those who knew him well.

He is survived by his daughter, Linda Martinelli-Haley; and brothers, Robert, Thomas, Michael, Mark and James.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Jackie, who passed away March 12, 1998. His father, Charles Ira Walker, passed away in 1989, and his mother, Lorraine Walker, recently passed away Feb. 10.

Jackie’s death was very difficult for Charles. Her passing created a difficult void in Charles’ life. To honor her, he became a home-care facilitator for the state of California, and enjoyed the rewards that came from caring for others.


Elmer H. Graves 1916-2015

Posted on March 4th in Obituaries

OBIT Graves workedElmer H. Graves, 98, passed away Feb. 12.

Nearly 99 years old, he was born on April 25, 1916, and raised in Garden City, Kan.

In 1934, Elmer met his future wife, Azalea, when she joined the Christmas carolers that Elmer was out caroling with during Christmas break. They married two years later, and were married nearly 69 years before Azalea passed away at the age of 94.

As a young boy, he joined cattle drives and as a teenager, between his junior and senior year, he joined 3 Cs to build a dam in Galveston, Kan. He returned to high school to complete his senior year of high school and graduated in 1936.

Elmer and Azalea moved West, living in Nyssa, Klamath Falls and eventually Hines, where he worked for the Hines Lumber Co. for 30 years. Their only child, Kathleen, was born in Ontario while they were living in Nyssa. Elmer had also worked as a firefighter in Kansas the year prior to getting married, and also had worked for the railroad and a sugar factory prior to settling in Hines. Elmer built their home and purchased ranch property, raising a small herd of cattle, as well as working at the lumber mill. Elmer was actively involved in Azalea’s Girl Scout troop, even becoming an honorary Girl Scout. He was also a longtime member, greeter and elder at the Burns Christian Church.

Elmer is survived by his five grandchildren, Martie, Teri, Wayne, Jeff and Rusty; nine great-grandchildren; and 15 great-great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister, Gladys; as well as nieces and nephews. He leaves a legacy of love; loving the Lord, his family, friends and neighbors.

He was an exceptional dad, grandfather, brother, role model and friend.

A memorial service will be held on his birthday, April 25, at the Burns Christian Church, in celebration of a life well lived.


OBIT Kaser webSamuel Victor Kaser, 84, passed away Feb. 25.

Sam was born Oct. 1, 1930, in Dutch Flats, the second of five children, to Floyd Kaser and Mildred Storts. He grew up in Silverton, and attended high school at Benson High in Portland, graduating in early 1949. He married his high school sweetheart, Wanda Miethke, in 1951.  They had four children over the next six years, and remained together until she passed in 2012.

After high school, Sam spent four years on active duty in the Navy, serving for a time on the USS Yorktown. He continued in the Naval Reserve until retiring in 1970. Sam enrolled at Oregon State University following his active military service, graduating with an electrical engineering degree in 1957. He worked as an engineer for electric utilities in Burns, Baker and Redmond, before moving to Saudi Arabia in 1975, where they remained for nearly 10 years.  During this time, he and Wanda traveled the world, visiting exotic places like Sri Lanka, Thailand, India, Afghanistan, Holland, and Africa. He once visited family in Switzerland during a trip back from Saudi. He finished his engineering career in Alaska, retiring in about 1990.

But Sam’s adventures didn’t end there. He obtained his Merchant Marine Officer license to operate up to 100-ton ships in 1989, bought his fishing vessel, Barita, and commercial fished in the Sitka, Alaska area off and on for the next few years. Sam and Wanda loved to travel. Over the next 20 years, they traveled between their homes in Sterling, Ark., Granite, and Hines, and everywhere in between. They enjoyed all the outdoor life Alaska and Oregon had to offer, while also spending time with family in both states.

Sam truly lived life to the fullest. He bought a cabin in Granite about 1963, and he and Wanda owned it until their passing. He was never away from Granite for more than a year or two at a time, and loved spending time there during all seasons of the year. Sam was an occasional rancher and farmer, and for a short while he even drove a logging truck. He was an avid hunter and fisherman. He was also a scuba diver and dived in the Red Sea while living in Saudi Arabia. He obtained his pilot license in about 1967, bought his beloved 1951 Aeronca Sedan airplane, and flew it until his deteriorating health finally brought his flying days to a close after nearly 45 years.

Sam was also a great citizen. He was a life-long member of the Elks, Lions, Masons, Shriners, Moose, and the American Legion.  Through these organizations, he donated a great deal of time and money, helping improve the lives of countless people.

Sam is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Kurt and Susan Kaser of Redmond; son and daughter-in-law, Dusty and Connie Kaser of Bend; and daughter and son-in-law, Melodi and Louie Molt of Burns; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Sam was preceded in death by his wife, Wanda; and son, Danny.

A celebration of life will be held at noon Sunday, March 15, at the Moose Lodge in Redmond.


OBIT Walker webLorraine Sylvia Walker, who celebrated her 90th birthday in October, passed away Feb. 10.

She was born Oct. 11, 1924, in International Falls, Minn. Her father, Carl, and mother Sylvia Hogan, moved the family to Hines during the “timber rush” of the 1920s and 30s. Lorraine also resided in North Bend and Coos Bay with her mother and step-father, Jesse Estes.

Lorraine attended Hines elementary, as well as Burns High School. She was a devoted member of the Catholic Church, and on Jan. 13, 1943, she married Charlie Walker in Boise, Idaho. During world War II, the two of them spent years as newlyweds living in South Dakota, Idaho, and eventually, Oregon. After his discharge from the Army, Charles was an employee of Edward Hines Lumber Company, where he advanced to lumber sales manager, and the two of them became permanent residents in the Burns/Hines area.

Charles and Lorraine welcomed their first child, Charles James, to their home in October 1951. He would become the eldest of five brothers. Lorraine, as a devoted housewife, built a loving environment for her six boys. She also worked part-time as a courtesy clerk for Safeway, The Hines Market, and Felt’s Jewelry in Burns.

She was an excellent cook, and always provided the love, care and necessities which were needed for her children. She found pleasure in decorating their home for the Thanksgiving and Easter holidays, and always looked forward to getting Christmas trees from the deep snow in the Ochoco Forest and decorating their home for Christmas. She was an avid reader and relished mysteries and detective stories. She had a wonderful sense of humor and found pleasure in working on jigsaw puzzles and crossword and word search books.

Lorraine’s devotion was toward her children. She was a caring housewife who participated in the local PTA, as well as the Cub and Boy Scouts for her children. She, along with her husband, Charles, were among the first members of the Valley Golf Club, and Lorraine was delighted to be recognized as an Honorary Member. She was also a member of the Par-Tee association and she enjoyed playing cards and the competitive bridge meetings she and her friends would have each week. She loved music, dancing, swimming, and she found gratification in teaching each of her children to “swim” at the old Hines pool near the south end of the Edward Hines mill. Lorraine also spent many hours working in her yard, where she and Charles had planted numerous fruit trees and countless flower beds. When the boys were young, apple, cherry and peach pies were made from the fruit from these trees, and Lorraine’s kitchen talents made each of the desserts a special treat.

During the late 1970s and 80s, after the boys had moved away, Charles and Lorraine experienced their “empty nest,” and Charles decided to enter politics. He became mayor of Hines, a title he held until his death in 1989. This transition allowed the two of them to travel to several mayoral conferences throughout the state, which also included a few trips to the Oregon coast, an area that Lorraine truly loved because she had been raised there as a child. Lorraine always looked forward to going to the beach, and her last trip was made there during her 80s with her son, Robert.

Lorraine spent nearly all her life caring for others, including her mother, Charles’ father and mother, her children and grandchildren. She willingly dedicated her selfless care to others, simply due to her compassion. She was rewarded with love and respect.

Lorraine is survived by her children, Robert and wife, Katie, Thomas and wife, Kathy, Michael, Mark, James and wife, Gaybrielle; seven grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; as well as all her friends who were close to her in all that she did.

A private family service was held Feb. 16.


Cynthia Ann Miles, 64, passed away Dec. 6 at The Aspens Living Center.

Cindy was born Dec. 18, 1949, to Howard H. Rightmier and Carol Ann Dreher Rightmier in Grants Pass, where she also graduated from high school. She married Robert Miles Feb. 5, 1977.

Cindy loved to garden, read and travel. She enjoyed watching the Hilander sport teams and went to many away games. Her favorite baseball team was the Mariners, and she and Bob would travel to Arizona each year to spring training to watch them.  She belonged to the Holy Family Catholic Church, Garden Club, Pride, and was a Harney County Fair volunteer.

She is survived by her husband, Bob Miles; brother, Bill Rightmier; and sister-in-law, Debby Rightmier.


Shawn Lee Wolfe 1951-2015

Posted on March 4th in Obituaries

OBIT Wolfe webShawn Lee Wolfe, 63, of Lebanon, passed away Feb. 17 at the Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis.

Shawn was born Aug. 8, 1951, in Eugene, the son of David and Norma (Minch) Wolfe. He resided in Linn County throughout his childhood and graduated from Lebanon Union High School in the class of 1969.

During his childhood and teen years, he worked on a fishing boat off Depoe Bay. He served in the U.S. Army for 16 years and was stationed in various places, including Germany and Texas.

In 1981, he settled in Burns, where he raised his family. He worked in farming for a short time, and as a timber faller for several years. He then went into the Army National Guard, where he served until retiring. He moved to Lebanon in 2009.

Shawn enjoyed hunting, fishing, wood working, reading, bowling, archery, and was a Seahawks armchair coach. He was a member of the American Legion Post 63 in Burns.

Shawn married Candace Vesper May 7, 1973, in Vancouver, Wash.

He is survived by his wife, Candace, of Lebanon; parents, David Wolfe of Salem and Roberta Wolfe of Bonnie Lake, Wash.; daughters, Darci Wolfe of Burns, and April and husband, Rob, Simpson of Burns; sisters, Leslie and husband, Wayne, Zurmely of Redmond, Wash., Lynn and husband, B.C., Carey of Canby, and Lila and husband, Bret, Meyer of Bonnie Lake, Wash.; grandchildren, Kodi Wolfe, Mollie Wilson, David Wilson and Jaycee Simpson.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Norma; son, Brady Wolfe; and brother, Dennis Morrell.

A graveside service was held Feb. 20 at the Lebanon I.O.O.F. Cemetery.

A celebration of life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 7, at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center in Burns. A potluck luncheon will be held immediately following the service.

The family requests donations to the Wounded Warrior Project or the American Legion Post 63 in Burns.


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