Home News Obituaries Obituaries for June 21, 2010
Obituaries for June 21, 2010
Joyce Avon Cole Kerns,74, of Haines, died June 17, 2010, at her home, with her family beside her.
Her service will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Baker United Methodist Church, 1919 Second St. Sally Wiens will officiate. The Haines Mutual Improvement Club will serve a lunch at the Haines United Methodist Church after the service.
Joyce was born on June 18, 1935, at Mound Valley, Kan., to Rolland and M. Irene Wilkinson Cole. She and her family moved to Baker City in 1941.
Music lessons at St. Francis Academy were a special treat for her. Joyce was a 1953 Baker High School graduate. She was very fortunate to have made and kept many good friends from her school days in Baker City.
This group of friends met yearly even when Joyce and her family had moved to locations all over the United States.
Joyce married the love of her life, Tom “Mac” Kerns on June 21, 1953. They celebrated just short of 57 years as loving husband and wife. Joyce attended Baker Business College, graduating in 1955. She later engaged those skills as an employee of the Oregon State University Dairy Science Department while her husband, Mac, attended classes.
Joyce was fortunate enough to be working at home while her children were young. Baking was one of her talents and any event or gathering could count on her pies, rolls or sheets of cookies.
She worked hard at making her house a home. Joyce and her young family lived in 24 houses in 32 years,which was no mean feat. She and her husband designed and built three of those 24 homes.
Joyce was the general contractor (emphasis on the general) on each of these projects, her family said. When building supplies were needed she drove the family’s 1947 International truck to Portland and Baker City.
She was responsible for roofing the family homes at Klamath Falls and John Day. When her children left home she started a career in the insurance business.
When her husband, Mac, was transferred to Washington, D.C., she accepted a job with the CIA. She told her family that of all her jobs that one was the most interesting and enjoyable.
When she left the CIA, she worked for the U.S. Forest Service. She finished her career at the Wallowa-Whitman Forest office in Baker City. Her work continued as a partner in the family ranch at Haines.
She was always active in the United Methodist Church where ver they lived. Most recently, Joyce was a member of the Haines United Methodist Church. She also attended Methodist Women’s Circle meetings in Baker City.
She played bridge weekly and was a hard-working member of the Haines Mutual Improvement Club. Joyce read weekly to students at the Haines Elementary School, supporting their SMART (Start Making a Reader Today) reading project.
Joyce supported the livestock industry and was a member of the Baker County CattleWomen.
Survivors include her husband, Tom”Mac” Kerns of Haines; sons, Brent and his wife, Mary, of Haines, and Wes and his wife, Mary (Davies) Kerns, of Princeton; daughter, Janni Kerns Eggers, and her husband, John, of Haines; grandchildren, Jacque Cobb, and her husband, Josh, Logan Kerns and his wife, Holly, and Andy Johnson, all of Haines, John Kerns and wife, Catie, of Baker City, Jeff Kerns, Mark Kerns of Princeton, Petty Officer 2nd Class Zach Eggers and Eli Eggers of Haines; great-grandchildren, Colt and Orin Cobb and Lance Kerns; brothers, Lloyd Cole and his wife, Midge, of Palm Desert, Calif., and Don Cole and his wife, Glenda, of Baker City; sister-in-law, Janice Cole of McMinneville; brothers-in-law, Tim Kerns and his wife, Jan, and James Kerns and his wife, Margery; sisters-in-law, Ellen Stevenson and her husband, Philip, of Haines, and Jean Griffith and her husband, Tom, of Belgrade, Mont.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Rolland and Irene Cole; a brother, Bill Cole; and infant daughter, Diane.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Haines Methodist Church through Gray’s West & Co. Pioneer Chapel, 1500 Dewey Ave., Baker City, OR 97814.