Saturday Aug. 1

Posted on July 29th in Community Calendar

The 2015 Chris Miller Memorial Steens Rim Run will be held Saturday, Aug. 1. The walk starts at 9:30 a.m. and the run at 10 a.m.

Join Harney District Hospital (HDH) for a free childbirth education class. Learn about the labor experience, caring for your newborn, post-partum care and much more! Class will be held from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 1, in the HDH board annex. Contact HDH’s Dawn Marten, 541-573-8345 to register or for more information. Lunch from Grand Street Café is included.

A Veterans lunch will be served at the Hampton Station Cafe the first Saturday of each month. RSVP  by calling Shelley at 541-576-4951.

Diabetes Support Group meets at the Harney County Health Building, 420 N. Fairview, the first Saturday of each month at 2 p.m.

The Harney County Arts & Crafts Association will meet Saturday, August, from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. in the basement meeting room at the courthouse. They will be discussing the wrap-up of the Quilt & Art Show; the meeting workshop topic is to be determined. The public is invited.

Sunday Aug. 2

Posted on July 29th in Community Calendar

The 30th annual Harney County Picnic will be held Sunday, Aug. 2, at Silver Falls State Park. Visiting starts at 10 a.m. and serving at 12:30 p.m. Take along chairs, card tables and place setting. For more information, call Heidi Sands Eggers 541-760-5904

A free community dinner, eat in or take out (no strings attached), is served the first Sunday of each month from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Pioneer Presbyterian Church, 417 W. Washington in Burns. The church is both wheelchair and walker accessible, and a limited number of deliveries are available. For more information, call 541-493-1987.

Overeaters Anonymous meets each Sunday at 1 p.m. in the Harney District Hospital Annex (downstairs in cafeteria area).Enter through the cafeteria door on North Grand. For more information, call Susie at 541-589-1522.

Alcoholics Anonymous meets every Sunday at 7 p.m. at Foursquare Church for 12×12 study.

Monday Aug. 3

Posted on July 29th in Community Calendar

Masonic Lodge meets the first Monday of each month at the Burns Masonic Lodge, 1210 W. Taylor, at 7 p.m.

The Burns Lions Club meets every Monday, except holidays, at noon at the Burns Elks Lodge. Those interested in serving the community and visitors are welcome. For more information call 541-573-4000.

A Walking Class is held each Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from  10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. indoors at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center.

Burns Fire Dept. meets each Monday at the Burns Fire Hall at 7 p.m.

The Hines Volunteer Fire Department meets at the Hines Fire Hall each Monday at 7 p.m. (except the last Monday of the month). Prospective members may contact Fire Chief Bob Spence at 541-573-7477 or 541-573-2251.

Narcotics Anonymous meets each Monday at 10 a.m. in the community room at Saginaw Village, 605 N. Saginaw. For more information call 541-589-4405.

Tuesday Aug. 4

Posted on July 29th in Community Calendar

Come Home to Harney County, the Hines train project, meets the first Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. in the Hines Council Chambers, 101 E. Barnes in Hines. All interested are welcome to attend.

Silvies River Spinners meets the first Tuesday of each month in the Harney County Courthouse basement meeting room at 5:30 p.m.

Harney Hospital Foundation meets the first Tuesday of each month in the Hospital Conference Room at 7 p.m.

Sylvia Rebekah Lodge meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at the I.O.O.F. Hall, 348 N. Broadway, at 6:30 p.m.

Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance Program (SHIBA) trained volunteers will be at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center, 17 S. Alder, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. each Tuesday to help with Medicare insurance needs or medications you cannot afford.

A Walking Class is held each Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from  10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. indoors at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center.

Tai Chi for Better Balance with Diane Rapaport is held each Tuesday and Thursday at Harney County Senior and Community Services Center from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. — free.

Boy Scouts meet each Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the LDS Church in Hines. All boys age 11 and above are welcome to participate.

Alcoholics Anonymous holds an open meeting each Tuesday at Foursquare Church, 74 S. Alvord in Burns at 7 p.m.


Posted on July 29th in Classified Ads



In the Circuit Court of the State of Oregon

For the County of Harney

Case No. 1506213CV

This is an action for judicial foreclosure of a deed of trust encumbering the real property commonly known as 241 S. Saginaw Avenue, Hines, Oregon 97738.  The “motion” or “answer” (or “reply”) must be given to the court clerk or administrator within thirty (30) days of the date of first publication specified herein along with the required filing fee.

UMPQUA BANK, Plaintiff,



To: Unknown Heirs of Robert W. Howes and Patricia Howes

You are hereby required to appear and defend the complaint filed against you in the above-entitled action within 30 days from the date of service of this summons upon you, and in case of your failure to do so, for want thereof, plaintiff will apply to the court for the relief demanded in the complaint.


You must “appear” in this case or the other side will win automatically.  To “appear” you must file with the court a legal paper called a “motion” or “answer.”  The “motion” or “answer” must be given to the court clerk or administrator within 30 days along with the required filing fee.  It must be in proper form and have proof of service on the plaintiff’s attorney or, if the plaintiff does not have an attorney, proof of service upon the plaintiff.

If you have any questions, you should see an attorney immediately.  If you need help in finding an attorney, you may call the Oregon State Bar’s Lawyer Referral Service at (503) 684-3763 or toll-free in Oregon at (800) 452-7636.

Ky Fullerton, OSB No. 025408
Umpqua Bank
1 S.W. Columbia Street, Suite 1200
Portland, Oregon  97258
Phone:  (503) 727-4295

Date of first publication: July 8, 2015

Publish July 8, July 15, July 22, July 29, 2015




The Harney Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) is requesting bids for the cutting of approximately 100 acres of juniper in the East Cow Creek drainage 18 miles east of Burns, Oregon.

The Harney SWCD office is located at 530 Highway 20 South in Hines, Oregon.  Please contact Marty Goold by email @ or Bill Andersen 541-589-3153 for more information.

Bid Requirements:  The project requires the felling of 100 acres of juniper on three units in two separate locations. The land owner is responsible for the excavator piling. Work must be completed by September 30, 2015.

Bid Tour: A mandatory bid tour will be conducted on July 31, 2015.  The tour will leave the Hines office at 8:00 a.m.  Bid packets will be available at the SWCD office in Hines.

Bid Quotes: Bids must be submitted by a sealed envelope to the Harney SWCD by 12:00 PM on August 4, 2015.

Project End Date: Cutting must be completed by September 30, 2015.

The landowner and/or the SWCD reserve the right to reject any or all bids.

Publish July 29, 2015.



Late but not forgotten.

I would personally like to thank my many friends who sent lovely sympathy cards and phone calls, and the friends who brought me flowers with their love & support, on the very sad loss of my beautiful granddaughter, Misa K. Blackburn. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  May God Bless you all.

Dorothy Blackburn



Found: A man’s ring was found in the deli at Thriftway near the end of June. To claim it, call Eddy or Keith. 541-573-3004.

EK 7/22 – 7/29 2t



ONE STOP SHOP! Western gifts, custom printing, framing, photography, artwork, jewelry, all-natural soaps, lotions and so much more! 29 E. Washington, Monday-Saturday, 9-5, 541-589-4249.



We carry Whirlpool Appliances, including freezers.
We also sell water heaters.

Burns Electric
70 S. Fairview

BE 1/10/07 TFN


24 HOUR CRISIS LINE: 541-573-7176. HHOPE offers free, confidential services for victims of physical, sexual and verbal abuse. Qualified staff, volunteers provide shelter, transportation and referrals with support and care.

HH 7/19/12 TFN


Linda Whiting of Designs by Linda is no longer associated with One Stop Shop in Burns, OR. Whiting is now a member of Gallery 15 on Washington Street in Burns, or view her work at her studio on Highway 78. For appointments, call 541-589-2025.

LW 7/29-8/5 2t



Public Announcement

The Crane School District 1J Board of Directors is seeking interested community members to fill a vacant seat on the District 1J High School Board. Interested parties must reside in the Crane Union High School District 1J boundaries and meet the requirements to serve as a board member required by statute. Letters of interest may be submitted to the Crane Schools P.O. Box 828 Crane, OR 97732. Letters need to be submitted by August 13, 2015 by 4:00 pm.  The 1J Board of Directors will discuss the appointment at its regularly scheduled meeting on August 17, 2015 at 4:00 pm in the board meeting room at the high school.  For further information, you may contact the Crane Schools office at 541-493-2641.

CS 7/29-8/12 3t



Notice of Job Opportunity

Part-Time Instructional Assistant Position Available

Crane Elementary School District # 4, Crane Oregon, is seeking interested and qualified applications for a part-time Instructional Assistant position at Crane Elementary School. Applicant should enjoy working with young students.

Applicants interested in this position must pass the paraprofessional test. Information will be given during interviews.

The position is for 4 hours per day with salary per negotiated agreement. Positions do not provide insurance coverage or PERS benefits.

Application Deadline: Open Until Filled

Applications may be obtained from the Crane School’s Office, or by calling the school office at 541-493-2641 ext. 221.

The Crane School District is an equal opportunity employer.

CHS 7/15-7/29 3t


Looking for a life skills trainer to provide support services to residential clients. Pay is $12/hour. Call 541-573-1780.

IP 7/29-8/12 3t


Harney County School District #33 in Fields, OR is accepting applications for a janitor. For more information or an application, please contact Hollie Henricks, Deputy Clerk, at 541-589-0993 or Application deadline is 3 p.m., August 11th.

HH 7/29 – 8/5 2t



Firewood for sale. Call 541-573-5030.

BR 1/8 TFN



Custom hay stacking, Kyle Mastre. We can stack 3×4’s and 3×3’s. Pricing is stacked on the edge of the field. Will quote further distances. 3×3, $3.75/bale. 3×4, $5.25/bale. Ward Mastre, 541-589-3889.

KM 6/24-7/15 4t


Feeder Alfalfa — 3×3 Bales. 541-493-2320. Leave Message.

7/8 – 8/5 5t


 For Sale: Mixed Grass Hay, Ave. 96# Bales, Under tarp.  $11 per Bale. U Load and Haul.


GS 7/22-7/29 2t



Computer Questions?

Zieber Computer Repair / Tutoring

• Repairs, Maintenance, Sales, Parts
• Upgrades, Installations
• Personalized/Group Tutoring
• Senior Citizen Discount

“Now Offering Rentals!”

Microsoft Certified

Professional (MCP) A+


JZ 1/12 TFN


Veteran Help

Veteran Service Officers
Guy McKay
P.O. Box 728 / 17 S. Alder Ave, Burns, OR

Tom Wolf

Senate Contacts
Senator Ron Wyden
Wayne Kinney (Field Rep)

Senator Jeff Merkley
Karen Wagner (Field Rep)

Joel Corcoran

Will Gmaz (Veteran Issues)

Congress Contact
Congressman Greg Walden
Cole (Veterans and active duty outreach caseworker)



American Kennel for dogs. Heavy gauge. 8x8x6 flooring and roof. $750. Contact Diane Mclean 623-498-7115.

DM 7/29-8/5 2t



Need inside car storage? 10’ x 30’ Individual lockable units now available. $75 per month. Call E-Z Storage. 541-573-2708.

JO 7/15 – 8/5 4t



Office space ready to rent or remodel with longer lease. Perfect for two businesses sharing space. 541-573-6608.

CB 7/8 to 7/29 4t


2 bed, 1 bath, newer efficient home $425m + dep. fairly small but nice inside, vaulted ceiling, big windows. Electric heat. Background check req. Hines RV park 573-3220 or office at space #1. Available 4/20.

KM 4/16 TFN



PRICE REDUCED BY $10,000. Newly-remodeled 5bd/2.5ba Burns home. Attached garage, enclosed back yard, oil F/A, wood insert, deck, garden space, storage. $149,900. Broker-owned. or call 541-413-0001.

JD 4/1 TFN



For sale – 42’ x100’ metal building on East Washington Street where the former Big Country Distributing and creamery building used to. The owner of the building will donate all funds from the sale of the building to Kids Club of Harney County.  Call 541-589-1092 for more information.

KC 7/29 1t



Crane School District # 4 and # 1J will be accepting sealed bids on surplus property. The items to be dispersed include the following items:

10X10 Red Dot Shed

CUHS Old Concession Stand

1996 F-350 Mini Bus ($800 Reserve)

1998 seventy passenger Bluebird School Bus ($1500.00 Reserve)

Bids must be received by August 6, 2015 and will be opened August 10, 2015. Winning bidders will have until August 14, 2015 to remove the property from the school premises. For more information, you may contact the district office at 541-493-2641.

CS 7/29 – 8/5 2t

Proposed 25 percent utilization rate questioned

by Steve Howe
Burns Times-Herald

A meeting to review the livestock grazing portion of the Blue Mountains Forest Plan Revision was held Tuesday, July 14, at the Harney County Community Center in Burns. A previous meeting held June 16 had focused on forest access in relation to the plan.



The process of revising the Forest Plans began in 2004, in compliance with the National Forest Management Act of 1976, which requires every national forest or grassland that’s managed by the United States Forest Service (USFS) to develop and maintain an effective land management plan (also known as a forest plan) to guide future management of natural resources for a period of approximately 10 to 15 years. Plans for the Blue Mountains National Forests haven’t been revised since 1990.

According to the USFS website, “The Malheur, Umatilla, and Wallowa-Whitman National Forests (collectively referred to as the Blue Mountains National Forests) have combined efforts and established the Blue Mountains Forest Plan Revision team to revise their land and resource management plans. The current plans are being revised to address substantial resource and social changes on the three national forests and to include new scientific information.”

On March 14, 2014, the Proposed Revised Land Management Plan and Draft Environmental Impact Statement (RLMP/DEIS) was released for a 90-day public comment period, which was extended an additional 60 days, ending on Aug. 15, 2014.

More than 1,000 letters were received during the comment period, with primary concerns being: access, the pace and scale of restoration, and grazing and other associated uses on the forest.

In an attempt to address these concerns, the USFS decided to take a step back and reengage the public by encouraging meetings in affected communities throughout Oregon and Washington.


Meeting introduction

The High Desert Partnership sponsored the July 14 meeting in Burns, with Seneca rancher Jack Southworth facilitating.

Attendees included Malheur National Forest grazing permittees, agency officials, elected officials and members of the general public.

The meeting began with a brief report by USFS Range Program Manager Maura Laverty.

Laverty started by clarifying the difference between standards and guidelines. She said a standard is a constraint.

“In this plan, we don’t have standards, we have guidelines,” Laverty explained.*

She said the guidelines are intents. For instance, in the plan, the grazing utilization guideline in bull trout habitat is at 25 percent. Laverty said the Forest Service has to demonstrate that it is meeting the intent of protecting the fish habitat in spawning areas.

“The guideline is an intent, and that’s what we have to show – that we’re making an improvement for the fish,” she said.

Laverty said that while the 25 percent grazing utilization rate is lower than the previous plan, grazing levels are already at that point.

“What our monitoring is showing is that, in most cases, we’re not even meeting the allowable use – we’re not taking as much forage as we can,” she added.

Nearly everyone in attendance had a comment or question. The following are a few highlights.


Public comment

Kyle Jackson asked Laverty how utilization levels were determined.

She said the revision team was focused on “accelerated restoration,” and decided that less utilization would amount to faster restoration.

“So it’s not necessarily science-based, it’s just that we think if we use less, then we’re going to be in a better situation?” Jackson asked.

“That is exactly what happened,” said Laverty.

Jackson asked if there would be a way to confine the 25 percent utilization rate to specific time frames when the fish needed protection, rather than apply it for the whole season. Laverty said it’s about the habitat, and protecting the riparian vegetation.

“And that’s not based on physiology at all, it’s just ‘we want to use less,’ is that correct?” asked Jackson.

Laverty said she had come into the process after a team had written up the plan.

“So I’m going to say, from my interpretation, that I can’t find the science behind it,” she said.


Colby Marshall made several suggestions for what should be included in the plan:

• Develop a cost share program for ranchers to hire additional riders to control cattle herds;

• With the restoration of riparian areas, create riparian pasturage;

• Develop more off-stream water resources;

• Allow opportunities to relocate Multiple Indicator Monitoring (MIM) sites that aren’t working;

• Allow goat grazing. Marshall said they don’t like riparian areas;

• Move away from measuring in Animal Unit Months (AUMs) to “total use” measurement;

• Form a “grazing team” that meets at the end of the grazing season and does an overall evaluation of how things are going.


Harney County Judge Steve Grasty said that the economic and social impacts of the Forest Plan needed to be addressed, and said there is a “cumulative impact” of regulation on people’s lives.

He also said that the Forest Service needs to keep its employees around longer in order to build relationships with the community.


Malheur National Forest Supervisor Steve Beverlin commented:

“I’m concerned that the utilization standard of 25 percent for bull trout [habitat] is lower than what’s currently in the agreed-to biological opinion of the regulatory agencies. I don’t think that’s a good trend. In fact, it will not be that way. At least for Malheur [National Forest]. You’re not going to go against what the legal regulatory agencies’ already-low standards are…we’re already accelerating our pace of restoration.”

Laverty responded:

“So that will be a recommendation that Steve, as the forest supervisor, will take to the signing official, and I would like to see the other two forest supervisors get on board with that. The team just came up with the 25 percent for accelerated restoration, and this is exactly the feedback we’re looking for.”


At the conclusion of the meeting, Laverty said she had received a lot of good ideas, and said she thought most of them would be implementable and that it seemed like they could be incorporated.

Laverty and Sabrina Stadler, revision team leader, noted that although the official comment period has past, comments are still welcome

If you would like more information about the revision process, or would like to be on the mailing list, please contact the revision team at or call 541-523-1264 or 541-523-1231, or visit the website at


*Clarification – July 30, 2015

In an article published July 22, “Livestock grazing portion of forest plan revision discussed,” United States Forest Service Range Program Manager Maura Laverty was quoted on the subject of the grazing portion of the Blue Mountains Forest Plan Revision as such:

“In this plan, we don’t have standards, we have guidelines.”

In order to clarify this statement, Laverty provided the following:

“We don’t have standards for the allowable forage utilization in riparian areas in bull trout habitat; we have guidelines.”

The group discussion that was reported on centered around the allowable forage use levels, and when Laverty stated that the plan didn’t have standards, she was referring to the riparian area allowable utilization levels specifically.

Action forfeits right to marijuana tax revenue

by Samantha White
Burns Times-Herald

Marijuana was a topic of discussion during the regularly-scheduled meeting of the Harney County Court held July 15.

On July 6, the Association of Oregon Counties (AOC) drafted an explanation of 2015 Enrolled Oregon Senate Bill 460, which allows medical marijuana dispensaries to sell certain limited marijuana retail products to persons at least 21 years of age, beginning Oct. 1. The limited products that can be sold at retail include seeds, dried leaves and flowers, and plants that are not flowering. However, legislation allows any county to prohibit those sales in the area subject to its jurisdiction.

The court agreed during its July 15 meeting to sign Ordinance 2015-74, prohibiting the sale of certain limited marijuana retail products through medical marijuana dispensaries in the area subject to the jurisdiction of Harney County.

The AOC also drafted an explanation of Sections 133 to 136 of 2015 Enrolled Oregon House Bill 3400, which provides two methods for a county or city to opt out of any one (or more) of the six categories of state-licensed or registered marijuana business. These businesses include medical marijuana processors, medical marijuana dispensaries, retail marijuana producers, retail marijuana processors, retail marijuana wholesalers, and retail marijuana retailers.

One of the methods can only be used by counties, and cities in those counties, that voted against Ballot Measure 91 by at least 55 percent. That method does not require referral for a local vote.

The other method, which can be used by any county or city, does require referral for a local vote at the next general election, with a moratorium in the meantime.

A county that opts out of any of the six categories of state-licensed or registered marijuana businesses forfeits its right to impose local marijuana taxes. The county also forfeits its right to a share of state marijuana tax revenue.

“This is not an issue to be generating revenues from,” Harney County Commissioner Dan Nichols said.

He added that employers are already having a hard time finding people who are employable because many are unable to pass a drug test.

If a county opts out of medical marijuana processing sites or medical marijuana dispensaries, existing sites or dispensaries may be grandfathered if they meet the requirements of sections 133 to 136 of the 2015 Enrolled Oregon House Bill 3400.

The court agreed to sign Ordinance 2015-75, prohibiting the six types of state-licensed or registered marijuana businesses in the area subject to the jurisdiction of Harney County.

Since 65 percent of Harney County voted against Measure 91, a local vote is not required.

District Attorney Tim Colahan explained that Ordinance 2015-75 is a permanent moratorium. He added that the ordinance will not impact the incorporated areas of Burns and Hines.

Chris Siegner, Symmetry Care Inc. director, said, “The cities will need to look at their own ordinances.”

He added, “As a treatment provider, we are thrilled you would take this action.”

Because both ordinances were considered “necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, and safety,” an emergency was declared, and they took effect on the date of their passage (July 15).

The text of both ordinances will be provided to the Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC).


Siegner, Jeannie Brown, and Aba Choate attended the meeting to discuss developmental disabilities contracts.

Siegner explained that Symmetry Care would like to provide developmental disabilities services in-house. He added that he hopes developmental disabilities services will have more of a presence in the community and local schools.

The court agreed to sign a contract between the state of Oregon and Harney County for developmental disability services. The court also agreed to sign a subcontract between the county and Symmetry Care for these services.

The court will review the mental health contract between Harney County and Symmetry Care during the next county court meeting.


The court signed a court order in the matter of instituting a burning ban in Harney County.

Thus, effective immediately (July 15), all outdoor burning is prohibited, and the issuance of burning permits is temporarily suspended. However, cooking outdoors in approved propane or charcoal barbecues is allowed.

The ban, which is based on weather conditions and community fire safety needs, will remain in effect until weather and fire danger conditions improve.

Speaking of fire safety, Grasty expressed appreciation for the firefighters who battled the July 4 wildfire just outside of city limits.

“I could see a mile of flame out my window, but I could see almost as many red, flashing lights as I could see fire,” he said.


Susan Christensen from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) discussed ongoing efforts to clean up dilapidated mobile homes within the county and cities of Burns and Hines.

Christensen explained that efforts have been complicated by the possible presence of asbestos, and she met with representatives from the county and two cities to discuss managing the mobile homes in a responsible way.

Grasty said he’d like to put together a committee to help identify nuisance properties in the county.

He said he’d also like to meet with Rodd Dinsmore, owner of C&B Sanitary Service, to discuss the process and costs associated with cleanup.


In other business, the court:

• received an update from Desiree Taylor and Darcy Ugalde concerning Farm Service Agency  (FSA) programs, including the Livestock Forage Disaster Program and Emergency Conservation Program. They also informed the court about the upcoming FSA county committee election;

• learned that Grasty requested training from the OLCC regarding the annual renewal of liquor licenses, as well as the county’s options and authorities;

• agreed to sign an order in the matter of conveying property not needed for public use to the Kids Club of Harney County. The court also agreed to sign the warranty deed;

• after a lengthy discussion with Harney County Roads Supervisor Eric Drushella, agreed to purchase a front end loader from Caterpillar for $250,836;

• approved and signed the agreement between Harney County and Harney County Deputy’s Association;

• briefly discussed sage grouse. Grasty thanked Barbara Cannady for her letter to the editor in the July 15 edition of the Burns Times-Herald, which encouraged the public to stand up against the proposed regulations.

He also encouraged the public to attend the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife meeting on Wednesday, July 22 and Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission meeting on Thursday, July 23;

• reviewed the Malheur National Forest Schedule of Proposed Actions for summer 2015;

• reviewed a letter from the Harney County 4-H Leaders Association regarding fairground maintenance;

• received a letter from the Department of Revenue Property Tax Division, stating that the mass appraisal review team completed its review of the 2015 Assessor Certified Ratio Study report and accepts its findings.

The next regularly-scheduled meeting of the county court will be held Wednesday,  Aug. 5, at 10 a.m. in Judge Grasty’s office at the courthouse.

by Steve Howe
Burns Times-Herald

At the Burns Municipal Airport on Thursday, July 16, the Boise Smokejumpers performed a training exercise, jumping from 3,000 feet to a pre-marked area between the runways below. (Photo by STEVE HOWE)

At the Burns Municipal Airport on Thursday, July 16, the Boise Smokejumpers performed a training exercise, jumping from 3,000 feet to a pre-marked area between the runways below. (Photo by STEVE HOWE)

On Thursday, July 16, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Boise Smokejumpers came soaring in to the Burns Municipal Airport. Thankfully, these airborne firefighters were not there to fight a fire. The crew of 10 – eight jumpers, a spotter, and the pilot – were performing a routine training exercise.

According to the BLM website, the Boise Smokejumpers “provide wildland fire and hazardous fuels reduction services to the BLM and other land managers” and “assist with wildfire suppression, remote area fire monitoring, prescribed fire, thinning, and other fuels operations.”


Suiting up

The smokejumper’s gear consists of a full suit made of Nomex® and Kevlar®, a main parachute worn on the back, a reserve parachute on the chest, and a helmet. All firefighting and survival gear is parachuted in a cargo box following the jumpers’ landing, and is meant to last them about 48 hours.


In the air

Liaison Officer/Spotter Kurt Atkins said that when preparing to make a jump, the most important variables to monitor are topography and wind conditions. The plane carrying the crew first makes a low pass over the landing site at around 500 feet, to get a view of the ground conditions. Then, it flies to 1,500 feet, where weighted streamers are released to serve as an indicator of current wind direction and speed. Finally, the pilot climbs to 3,000 feet, and the crew members begin to jump. The spotter assists each person at the open aircraft door as they take the leap, and then stays with the plane.

In this exercise, crew members jumped one at a time, although Atkins said when they are on a fire, they will commonly jump in pairs. He said that airspace management is extremely important – the first jumper has to get out of the air fastest, and will manipulate the parachute to spiral down faster in order to make space for those following.



For the training exercise, a target area was marked, and the jumpers aimed to get as close to it as possible. Atkins said the first thing they do after landing in a fire zone is to establish communication with dispatch, alerting them that they’ve arrived safely and are ready to fight the fire.


OBIT Petersen webPhilip Charles Petersen, 73, a lifelong resident of Riley, passed away at his home July 9, with his sons by his side.

Philip was born Nov. 7, 1942, in the old stone hospital in Burns.

Phil was raised on the Upper Valley Ranch near Riley, where he attended grades 1 through 8 at the two-room Suntex grade school. His parents drove him and his three brothers the 13 miles each way to school on unimproved dirt roads. His four brothers and he were an integral part of the family operation. Phil started running machinery when he was 9 years old. None of the four sons were ever allowed to drive teams, although all of them did gather cattle and brand calves at a young age.

Phil attended Burns Union High School (BUHS) and lived in the boarder house the first two years, and then his mother moved to town during the school year. He participated in wrestling and football in high school. As a graduate in 1960, he was part of the first class to graduate from the then new high school. Phil would tell stories of his memories growing up. One of his favorite stories was how, during his junior year, the sloughs down through the valley froze, and he and his brothers spent evenings skating on the ice and burning old tires to stay warm.

During his senior year in high school, he along with four friends, Dennis Lesser, Orville Cheek, Dan Jordan and Claude Usery, joined the Army National Guard (ANG) and spent the rest of 1960 training at Fort Ord and Fort Bliss. They all committed to staying together the entire time through training; this was their first venture into the real world and these experiences generated a lot great memories that were talked about at class reunions.  Phil retired from the ANG in 1987, with 20 years of service.

In 1961, Phil began attending Oregon State University, majoring in industrial arts education. In mid-year of 1965, he finished his course work with his bachelor’s. In January, his first teaching job was at Calapooya Junior High School in Albany.  Two and a half years later, an old classmate from college called and asked if he would be interested in a job at Reynolds High School, and he spent one year at Reynolds. In the fall of 1970, he applied for a job opening at Burns Union High School, and spent the rest of his teaching career at BUHS, and later at Lincoln Junior High. He was awarded the 1982 Harney Co. Jaycees Educator of the year and the 1985 American Industrial Arts Teacher of the Year.

He spent his life working with cattle. In 1976, his brother, Jon, and he formed a partnership and leased their uncle Herb’s ranch on Soldier Creek.  They ran cattle there until 1982. In 1982, they leased the Whither’s ranch at Harney. After six years of running cattle on Uncle Herb’s ranch on Soldier Creek, in 1988, they moved their operation back to the Upper Valley Ranch. Then, in the spring of 1991, Phil and his brother, Jon, dissolved the partnership and divided the cattle. Phil continued to run the ranch until 1998, when he developed liver disease and had to sell most of his cattle. In 1998, Phil moved to what is known as the Peck Field with his remaining cattle. In 2004, he had a liver transplant, which was better than he had dared to hope for.

Velda Pace McEldowney and he were married in 1967. He and Velda’s two sons, Steven and Terry, were joined in the family in 1972 by Matthew. The cattle operation was always a family affair, which meant the kids spent most of their free time and vacation time doing ranch related work; even as the boys got older, Phil and Velda could always count on them for help. All three of the boys were raised the same, and Phil and Velda always wanted them to know that they proved themselves to be a great blessing. One of Phil’s and the boys’ special memories together  was to go fishing on Silver Creek every Memorial Day. Even though they never caught many fish,  the boys were always excited to do this, and continue this tradition with their own families today.

Phil is survived by his wife, Velda Petersen; sons, Steven, Terry and Matthew; nine grandchildren; two great-granddaughters; brothers, George, Daryl and Jon; as well as many nephews, nieces, friends and colleagues, all of whom held great respect and love for him and will forever hold his memory dear.

A ceremonial service to honor his life will be held Saturday, July 25, from 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. at the Burns Elks Lodge, 118 N Broadway Ave. in Burns. Family and friends are encouraged to join to share their own account and reflection of their memories.


OBIT Van Cleave webJody Paul Van Cleave, 51, passed away July 14 at St. Charles Medical Center in Bend.

Jody was born Dec. 24, 1963, in Astoria to Duane and Laura Van Cleave. Jody spent most of his adult life working on various ranches and building fences in Idaho.

He is survived by his parents, Duane and Laura of Burns; sister and brother-in-law, Lari and Todd Higgins of Burns; and two sons, Cody and Kelsey Van Cleave of California. He was preceded in death by his grandparents and brother, Ryan.

Graveside services will be held Saturday, July 25, at 11 a.m. at the Burns Cemetery.

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