Donald Edward Renfro died on Monday, April 18, at his home in Burns, surrounded by his family.

He was born May 17, 1930, in Piggott, Ark., to Alma and Leslie Renfro, the second of six children.

Renfro spent his childhood in Piggott.

On June 28, 1948, he married Thelma Balz Renfro. The couple moved to California, where their two children, Douglas and Donita, were born.

Renfro was employed at Lockheed Martin on the Vandenburg Air Force base in Santa Maria, Calif. He was a transportation manager, working there until he and his wife became Child Evangelism Missionaries.

After completing the Child Evangelism Institute in San Bernadino, Calif., he and his wife began their ministry in Redmond. For 25 years they served the Lord, in camps, Good News Clubs and Release Time Classes and had the Good News Trailer at all of the Central Oregon fairs and the Harney County Fair. To thousands of children he was known as “Uncle Don.”

After his retirement, Renfro enjoyed spending time in his shop, making beautiful cabinets. He also enjoyed fishing, camping and hunting, but most of all he loved spending time with his kids and grandkids. Everyone called him “Grandpa,” including all of his grandchildren’s friends.

Renfro was a deacon at the Tumalo Community Church. He sang in the choir and cooked for all social events.

Renfro and his wife  moved to Burns to live with their daughter in 2007. His wife died after 59 years of marriage. Renfro’s granddaughter, Elizabeth, then took care of him. He looked forward to phone calls every night from his son. Harney County Home Health and Harney County Hospice became a big part of his life, and were a blessing to him and his family.

Renfro is survived by his sister, Jennie Blake and husband Jack, of Piggott Ark.; brothers, Julius Renfro and wife Mary of Piggott Ark., and Junius Renfro and wife Cathy of Crescent City, Ill., son, Douglas Renfro and wife  Gloria of Bend; daughter, Donita (Dee) Ford, of Burns; and grandchildren, Liz Taylor of Burns, Joe Ford and wife Lisa of Creswell, Jon Ford and wife Lori  of Jefferson, Sharon Garner of Salt Lake City, Utah, Matt Renfro of Bend, and Lillian McCord and husband Lowell  of Bend.

He was preceded in death by  brothers, Doyle Renfro and Bobbie Renfro;  and wife, Thelma Renfro.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, April 23, at the Tumalo Community Church in Tumalo. LaFollette’s Chapel was in charge of arrangements.


Bobby Dean Ellis 1931-2011

Posted on April 27th in Obituaries

Bobby Dean Ellis, 80,  died on April 18 at Catabaw Valley Care Center & Hospice, N. C.

He was born March 8, 1931, in Greensboro, N.C., to Lonzo and Lillie Ellis. He was one of 13 children.

Ellis grew up in Hickory, N.C. At the age of 21, he was drafted into the army and served a year in the Korean War as a lineman.

In 1959 Ellis came to Oregon. In 1961 he met and married Karen Everhart (Spease). Together they had four children — one daughter and three sons.

Ellis worked for Edward Hines Lumber Company for 24 years as a choker setter and heavy equipment operator. He also drove a logging truck for Lt&L Logging Company for a few years. He retired at the age of 62.

Ellis enjoyed his salvage yard, gathering old cars and working on them.

He also enjoyed hunting with his family, camping, woodcutting and the Demolition Derby of Harney County, Klamath and John Day.

Ellis is survived by his daughter, Janet Frazier of Lewiston, Idaho; three sons; Robert Ellis of Chandlier, Ariz.; Tony Ellis of Bend and Brady Ellis of Burns; 10 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Ellis was preceded in death by his parents and four of his siblings.

Bass-Smith funeral Home in Hickory, N.C., was in charge of cremation arrangements. A private family service will be held at a later date in Burns.


Forrest A. Sneva 1927-2011

Posted on April 27th in Obituaries

Forrest A. Sneva died on April 24.

He was born on Jan. 14, 1927, in his home in Underwood, Minn., to George and Edith (Arneson) Sneva.

Sneva attended school in Fergus Falls, Minn.

Sneva was a proud member of the United States Marine Corp. He enlisted during his senior year in high school and was called up just a few months before graduation. He served in China from 1944 to 1945.

Upon returning to the United States he married Patricia Hysjulien on Sept. 26, 1947, in the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Fergus Falls, Minn. They moved to Logan, Utah, where Sneva completed a degree in range management. In 1952 he and his wife moved to Burns and made it their home.

Sneva lived and worked on the Squaw Butte Experiment Station during the summers, and in town during the school year.

During his career as a range research scientist Sneva authored and co-authored many publications.   He did research on Mount St. Helen’s ash and published it.

Sneva will be remembered as an attentive, loving, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and brother. He was active in church and willing to volunteer and help out whenever and wherever. Sneva especially enjoyed sewing soft books, making quillows for all the family members for high school graduation, helping make costumes, creating cards for the grandchildren and great-grandchildren and playing the harmonica for birthdays.

Sneva is survived by his children, Pennie Hatlestad and husband Jerry of Harwood, N.D., Greg Sneva and wife Kathy of Redmond, Gary Sneva of Tucson, Ariz., and Jenna Sneva of Sisters; grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren, Alana Sears and husband Todd, DJ Hatlestad and wife Missy, Tim Sneva, Catrina Beach, Aidan Sears, Forrest Sears, Edyth Hatlestad, Elizabeth Hatlestad, Tiegan Moss, Isabel Beach, Corbett Sneva and wife Celida, Kenjirou Sneva, Corbin Sneva and Celida Grace.

He is also survived by his brother, Byron Sneva and wife Doris of Anacortes, Wash.; sister, Sonja Moe and husband Lon of Fergus Falls, Minn.; sisters-in-law, Evelyn Sneva of Issaquah, Wash., and Elaine Sneva of Brainerd, Minn.; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Sneva was preceded in death by his wife, Pat; brothers, Ervin and Gordon; and  nephew, Jeff Moe.

Contributions in Sneva’s memory may be made to the Peace Lutheran Church in Burns, Harney County Home Health/Hospice or the charity of one’s choice.


Thurman E. “Vic” Lawson, 82, died on April 7.

He was born Nov 4, 1928, in London, Ky.

The family moved west to Burns in 1935. Lawson completed his elementary and high school education here.

As a band leader, his class was the first to go to the Rose Bowl parade from Burns.

Lawson served in the National Guard from 1947 to 1952. In 1954 he moved to Redding, Calif., and worked at various jobs in the lumber and sawmill industry. He went to work for Kimberly Clark pulp and paper mill in 1965.

In June 1969 he moved to Junction City, and went to work for what was then American Pulp and paper mill in Halsey as a millwright and retired 25 years later.

During Lawson’s working career he was always active as a union member, serving in various elected positions. He served on the safety and environmental committees helping to create a safe and healthy environment in the work place.

His interests included hunting, fishing, visiting relatives and spending time with friends and family.

Lawson is survived by sons, Mark, Robin and Larry; daughters, Belinda Looney of Burns, Debi, and Libby of Eugene; sister, Doris Delzer of Milwaukee, Calif.; and brother, Ken Vaughn of Redding, Calif. He is also survived by 17 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by son Thurman, Jr.

At his request there will be no services.


Roselle Connall 1917-2011

Posted on April 20th in Obituaries

Roselle Lynnette Connall (Baker), 93, died April 13 at Ashley Manor in Burns.

She was born May 31, 1917, in Burns to Alvon and Emma (Kesterson) Baker.

Her childhood was spent in a variety of home sites in Harney County and Idaho.  She moved many times in her childhood, and settled permanently in Burns in 1930.  Some of the various home sites include one that is now under water at Krumbo Reservoir,  Poison Creek area and the Dixon Ranch in the Sandhill area.

She married Lionel Lyman Connall on Aug. 28, 1934, in Eagle Idaho. The newleyweds rode the “milk train” to Burns and lived on Grandpa Tom Baker’s Sandhill Ranch.  They then moved to Richland where they both worked.  Their two sons Robert and Lyle were born during this time.

Connall and her family returned to Burns at the start of WWII. She stayed home and had a full-time job as mother and wife. Her husband worked at Edward Hines Lumber Company. In 1950 she and her husband purchased the Hines Richfield Station.  They sold the station in 1957 and began 35 years of “relocating” as Lionel worked as a mechanic throughout Oregon and Washington. They followed the construction of dams and freeways and moved to various towns including near Brownlee Dam, Oxbow, Wanapum, Mason and the John Day Dam. They moved to the Portland area in the early 70s where her husband was employed for a barge and tug company on Swan Island. Connall continued her full-time job as wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.  They retired in 1991 and returned to Hines.

Lionel and Roselle moved to The Aspens in November 2005. Connall moved to Ashley Manor in 2007.

Connall is survived by son, Robert and daughter-in-law Julia of Hines; grandchildren Robin and Marc Mitchell of LaGrande, Marty Connall of Redwood Shores Calif., and Kyle and Iva Marie Connall of West Linn; and great-grandchildren, Robbie, Lynnette and Marcus Allen of La Grande, Elliot Richard and Madeline Marie of West Linn. She is also survived by her sisters Arlene (Chick) Shaw and Katherine (Kitty) Barstad and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins throughout many Eastern Oregon counties.

Connall was proceeded in death by her husband, son Lyle, parents and younger sisters Twyla Turner, Arlice (Smokey) Gunderson and Betty Cheek.

Funeral services will be Saturday, April 23, at 10 a.m. at the Pioneer Presbyterian Church in Burns with graveside services to follow.  Family and friends are invited for lunch following the services at the church.

Contributions in Connall’s memory may be made to the Harney County Senior Citizen Center.


Donna L. Jansen 1951-2011

Posted on April 20th in Obituaries

Donna L. Jansen, 59, of Madras, died on April 12, in the hospice facility at Mountain View Hospital.

Jansen was born on Nov. 7, 1951, in Burns to Norma L. Fallon.

She grew up in Burns, but also had fond memories of the time when she lived in Jerome, Idaho, with her aunts Linda Fallon and Mary Smith.

In Burns, she lived on a ranch, participated in fair court and graduated from Crane High School. After high school, she married and lived near Princeton and drove mail stage from Princeton to Burns to Frenchglen and back the next day.

Jansen later moved to Moscow, Idaho, and then to Kansas, where she attended Johnson County Community College, in Overland Park, studying accounting and business management, and earning her insurance license.

In Lawrence, Kan., she managed an insurance office for a number of years before returning to Burns, where she worked two part-time jobs — for the justice of peace and selling insurance.

In 1996, she moved to Culver and stayed with a friend until she was hired in May 1997 as the administrative assistant for Jefferson County, where she remained employed until her death.

In 2006, she was selected by the Republican Party to replace a candidate who had dropped out of the race of a county commission position. Two years ago, the chamber of commerce honored Jansen with their Public Servant of the Year award.

Her interests included literature, art, home design, gardening and shopping, as well as keeping her husband from tormenting local government.

Jansen is survived by her husband, Steve Jansen; son, Matthew Davies and wife  Carla of Hines; step-sons, Tom Jansen of Canada, and Don Jansen of Ukiah, Calif.; brother, Dwain Moss; sister, Tammera Karr and husband Michael of Southern Oregon; nephews, Donald Moss and Brendan Karr; five grandchildren; one great-niece and nephew; and aunts, Jean Hunnecutt, Mary Smith and Linda Fallon.

She was preceded in death by her son Jason Davies and mother, Norma Morgan.

A celebration of Jansen’s life will be held on Saturday, April 23, at 10 a.m. at Bel-Air Colonial Funeral Home in Madras, with Pastor Jeff Freshour of the Madras Conservative Baptist Church officiating. A reception will follow at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Jansen’s memory may be made to the Mountain View Hospice. The family is also setting up a foundation fund at the Jefferson County Library to allow contributions to be used to purchase books on her behalf.


Daniel J. (Boone) Collins died on April 2 in Burns.

He was born on Nov. 5, 1959, in Lakeview to Mike and Mary (McCarthy) Collins.

Collins graduated from Lakeview High School. Following graduation he was employed in the auto parts industry, working at Ag & Auto and Napa Auto Parts. In the last 20 years he had been working in Burns for Andy Root. He worked in both haying and farming for Root.

Collins enjoyed hunting, fishing, being outdoors and just touring around the countryside, wherever he was living.

Collins is survived by his brother, Ted Collins of Lakeview; and sister, Norene Collins of Albany.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Mike Collins and Mary Collins.

A memorial service will be held on April 30 at 11 a.m. at Faith Baptist Church. A lunch will follow in the Fellowship Hall for all family and friends.

Contributions in Collins’ memory may be made to the charity of one’s choice.


A celebration of life service for Betty Z. Cheek will be held on Saturday, April 23, at 2 p.m. at the Burns Elks Lodge.

Cheek died on Nov. 28, 2010, at Harney District Hospital of natural causes.

Contributions in Cheek’s memory may be made to the Harney County Senior Center or Harney County Home Health and Hospice.


John F. Clark 1928-2011

Posted on April 13th in Obituaries

John F. Clark, 82, died on April 3 at the Good Shephard Medical Center in Hermiston.

He was born on July 14, 1928, in San Diego, Calif., to  John T. and Catherine Day Clark.

Clark was raised and attended schools in Escondido, Calif., and Oahu, Hawaii. He then joined the United States Army, serving during World War II, until his honorable discharge.

Clark then returned to California and later married Lois Smith on July 28, 1951, in Valley Center, Calif. He worked as a ranch hand on several different cattle ranches in California, Washington, Nevada and Oregon.

He and his wife  retired to Fields, where they lived until his wife died. Clark then lived in Burns for a time before moving to Hermiston in December 2005, where he remained until his death.

Clark enjoyed ranching, playing checkers, cards, hunting, singing, yodeling and training and raising border collies. He never met a stranger and enjoyed talking and getting to know everyone he crossed paths with.

He was a 4-H leader, a champion hog caller and a member of the Cowboy Church in Power City.

Clark is survived by his son, John C. Clark of Texas; daughters, Mary Corbett of Tulare, Calif., Patricia Eastman of Valley Center, Calif., Nancy Hamilton of Robertson, Wyo., Diane Stauffer of Hermiston, and Jane Linck of La Grande; 14 grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and numerous cousins.

He was preceded in death by his wife, his parents and  sister, Joyce Clark.

A celebration of life service was held on April 9 at the Cowboy Church in Power City. Contributions in Clark’s memory may be made to the local 4-H clubs.

To sign the condolence book, go to: www.burnsmortuaryhermiston.com

Burns Mortuary of Hermiston is in care of arrangements.


Joshua Preston Harris died on March 30.

He was born on April 27, 1986, in Bend, to Scott Harris and Glenda Roe Harris.
Harris lived in Hines and attended Burns High School, graduating with the Class of 2004. He then attended Central Oregon Community College in Bend. He completed his education earning a bachelor’s degree in computer science with an online university.

Harris was employed as a Geek Squad Agent at the Best Buy Store in Bend. He  enjoyed every moment spent at the store with his fellow employees.

Harris loved the outdoors.  He was especially happy fishing and hunting with his dad. He also liked to play a round or two of golf.

Harris enjoyed playing computer games, competing with friends both in person and online. He spent as much time as he was able enjoying his nephew, family and friends.

He was a kind and gentle soul and made friends easily, holding them close to his heart. Harris met everyone with a smile and was genuinely compassionate toward everyone he came in contact with.

Harris is survived by his parents, Scott and Glenda Harris; grandparents, Carl and Phyllis Harris; brother, Eric Boswell and wife Kristy;  sister, Lacy Harris; nieces, Lauren and Morgan; and nephews, Tyler and Quinton. He is also survived by numerous aunts and uncles, along with his many friends.

Visitation was held Monday, April 4, followed by a funeral service at Niswonger- Reynolds Funeral Home in Bend.


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