Obituaries for the week of Feb. 11 to Feb. 15

February 15, 2002 12:00 am

Martha Warhol

Martha Ackerman Warhol, 102, died Feb. 13, 2002, at her home in Halfway.

Her funeral will at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 2, at the Pine Valley Presbyterian Church in Halfway.

Born in South Dakota in 1899, Martha was the oldest of nine children. She grew up in the small German community of Herried, S. D., where her father was a farmer, owned the local bank, and ran a general store.

She didnt learn to speak English until she was in the first grade. The whole family worked part time in the bank and in the store, and Martha told tales of balancing the books in the bank each day by hand, because there were no adding machines.

Martha lived in three centuries, and in her lifetime saw the advent of electrification, the radio, television, and computers, not to mention the first automobiles, airplanes, rockets, and a man walking on the moon.

After high school graduation she did what very few South Dakota farm girls had done before her: She decided to go to away to college.

After a year at a local college, she went on her own to the University of Minnesota, where she received a bachelor of science degree in home economics in 1921. She was at the time, she said, a flapper-or at least, dressed like one, and it was there she met Peter Warhol.

She was very interested in hospital dietetics, and after graduation she moved to California where she began an extremely successful career as a hospital dietician. Her career ended rather abruptly when Peter came to California to ask her to marry him, and she said yes.

They were married in 1930 in Marthas hometown of Herried. As was the custom in those days, Martha left her job to become a full-time housewife.

At the depth of the Depression, Martha was asked to run a program called the Organized Unemployed. A large church basement was turned into a canning factory. Farmers brought in the produce, and women brought their canning jars and their labor. Scrip was used to pay the workers, and to buy the canned goods. The program was a great success, and Martha was modest about what she had been able to do for the community.

As the wife of a mining engineer, Martha lived in a great many towns and cities, ending up in Minneapolis, where she was, as always, active in her community and in her church. She had always loved California, and in 1983 she and Peter left Minneapolis and moved to Laguna Hills, a retirement community south of Los Angeles.

She enjoyed their years there, and kept very busy with new friends and activities. While she was at it, at the age of 86 she fulfilled a lifelong desire to learn to swim.

She and Peter moved to Halfway 12 years ago to live with their daughter, Patricia, and son-in-law Tony Sowers. As she had always done in a new place, she became involved in the church and in the community.

Local women welcomed her and helped to make her feel at home. She joined the local bridge club and the Carson Club, where she remained active until only two weeks ago. She became Grandma Martha, a title she loved having, by coming to the school twice a week to read to a group of Head Start children, and then to numerous kindergarten classes.

Survivors include her husband, Peter; daughter, Patricia; sons, Warren and Dick; 10 grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; two sisters; a son-in-law, two daughters-in-law, and many nieces and nephews.

The family requests donations in lieu of flowers, to be made to the Pine Valley Presbyterian Church through Tamis Pine Valley Funeral Home, P.O. Box 543, Halfway, OR 97834.

Muriel Merritt

Muriel Estella Merritt, 89, of New Meadows, Idaho, died Feb. 13, 2002, at St. Elizabeth Health Care Center in Baker City, surrounded by three generations of her family.

Her funeral will be Saturday at 2 p.m. at the New Meadows United Methodist Church. Pastor Leathar Essinger will officiate. Interment will be at Meadow Valley Cemetery.

Visitations will be today until 6 p.m. at Grays West & Co. Pioneer Chapel, 1500 Dewey Ave.

Mrs. Merritt was born Dec. 29, 1912, down on the Snake River out of Joseph to Elben F. Dotson and Lillian (Lilly) Snyder Dotson. Her mother passed away when she was 17 months old.

Following her fathers remarriage the family moved to Indian Valley, Idaho, when she was about five. They later moved to a ranch outside Cambridge, Idaho, where she graduated from high school in 1931.

Following graduation she went to work as a cook for the Circle C Ranch in Meadows Valley, where she met the love of her life, Lawrence J. Merritt. They were married in the Circle C Ranch house in 1932. They had three children: Lawrence Norman, Lillian Darlene, and Beverly Anne.

Mrs. Merritt loved anything to do with words, reading, talking with family and friends, and writing. She won numerous contests for writing short essays, jingles and slogans. She loved poetry and wrote many poems. She also was a reporter for the Adams County Leader and the Star News for many years.

Mrs. Merritt was an avid gardener, transforming the rocky area around their home into a beautiful yard with many varieties of flowers.

All who knew her, especially her family, loved Mrs. Merritt. Her grandchildren cherished the many happy hours they spent in the home that she and their grandfather built. Her grandchildren were the joy of her life. She always had time to sit and hold them, telling them stories, reading to them or just loving them.

She was a dedicated homemaker, always putting her family first. Not only her children and grandchildren, but also the many friends who often accompanied them to visit Grandpa and Grandma Merritts, remember the many wonderful meals she put on the table.

She loved the Lord and was baptized in 1956.

Her beloved Lawrence passed away April 15, 1984, from cancer.

Mrs. Merritt is survived by both her brothers and sisters-in-law, Melvin and Inez Dotson of Cambridge and Floyd and Lillian Dotson of Storrs, Conn.; her children, Lawrence Norman Merritt of Boise, Steven and Lillian Terry of Baker City, and Beverly Anne Murdock of Lake Forest, Calif.; six grandchildren, Melanie Clogg, Bonnie Roseberry, Carol Thamert, Robert Hibbard, John Murdock and Christopher Murdock; 11 great-grandchildren and two great-greatgrandchildren; numerous stepgrandchildren; and many other family members, nieces, nephews and friends.

Mrs. Merritt was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, and a daughter-in-law, Eva Merritt.

Though she will be missed by all who knew her, a piece of her will live on in each of them.

Contributions in Mrs. Merritts memory may be made to the New Meadows United Methodist Church, in care of Grays West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.

Alton Schmidt

Alton Arno Schmidt, 87, of Richland died Jan. 15, 2002 at St. Elizabeth Health Services.

At his request there will be no formal service. A memorial service to celebrate his life will be scheduled in the spring when the wildflowers bloom on the Bear (Bare) Walla (Waller) Hills.

Alton, known as Skip, Skipper, Alt or Smitty, was born June 7, 1914, in Pine Valley. He was the only son of Louis and Maude Schmidt. He attended school at Clear Creek and Pine Valley High School at Halfway. He was proud of his cradle roll in the Presbyterian Church and used to sing and whistle solos in both the Presbyterian and Christian churches of Halfway.

If anyone would ask Alton what his occupation was, he would respond, Im just a doodle dasher. This was surely a modest impression. His many lines of work included ranching, furniture manufacturing, Boeing Aircraft construction, heavy construction (Detroit Dam Powerhouse concrete foreman) and framing and finish carpenter.

A creative and imaginative problem solver, Alton never lacked for a project, from making his small sister tea sets from clay mud while sheepherding, to building his family a home from start to finish at West Linn.

He loved gold mining, gardening, tinkering, singing and whistling. Alton found happiness in the small humble pleasures of life, such as laughing or getting somebody else to, with his quick wit. He enjoyed life and found beauty in every day.

His positive perspective saw him manage being disabled since 1982 when he punctured his spinal cord in an arthritic neck. This began limiting his mobility until in later years he was in a wheelchair full time. In all that time, he never lost his positive outlook and would still cook for his daughter so her day wouldnt seem so long.

His family made this tribute to him: Thank you, Papa, for all the caring, sharing and love.

Alton was a loving husband and supportive, teaching parent.

Survivors include his wife, Norma Jean of Portland; his sisters, Edrie Wells of Halfway and Louise Morgan of West Linn; his daughter, Laina Kay Chandler of Richland; grandchildren, Joshua and Jeremiah Sprague and Troy Schmidt; great-grandson, Landon Sprague; and numerous other extended family.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a sister, Wilma Cox; a son, Larry Alton Schmidt; a niece, Naomi White; and a nephew, Patrick Wells.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Richland Ambulance through Coles Funeral Home, 1950 Place St., Baker City, OR 97814.

Dorothy Stuart

Dorothy Arlie Stuart, 87, a former longtime resident of Baker City and Richland, died Feb. 9, 2002, at her home in Omak, Wash.

Her funeral will be at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Richland Christian Church. Pastor Gordon Bond of the church will officiate. Vault interment will be in the Eagle Valley Cemetery at Richland. Visitations will be from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. today at Grays West & Co., 1500 Dewey Ave.

Dorothy was born on Feb. 11, 1914, at Ephrata, Wash., to Harvey and Martha Pruitt Coombes. She spent her younger years at Republic, Wash., later moving to Seattle, Wash., and then to Baker City.

She married Gordon Stuart on Feb. 4, 1934. They lived at Enterprise for several years and then returned to Baker City. They moved to Boise in the fall of 1957. Upon Gordons retirement from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, they returned to Baker County and had a ranch at New Bridge.

After Gordons death in 1995, Dorothy moved back into Baker City where she lived until 1998 when she moved to Omak, Wash., to be near her daughter, Dorothy Kendall.

She worked for Sylvans Laundry (Crown Cleaners) and J.C. Penney Co. in Baker City and as a secretary for the welfare office in Boise.

Her greatest interest was music. She first played the organ at the age of 4. She didnt read music, but played the piano and organ all her life. She played the organ for the Nazarene Church at Richland when she and Gordon lived at New Bridge. She also enjoyed gardening, especially tending to her houseplants, candle-making and needlework. She was a devoted wife and mother and was always there for her family.

Survivors include a son, Walters Dee Stuart, and his wife, Virginia, of La Grande; a daughter, Dorothy Kendall, and her husband, Donald, of Omak, Wash.; grandchildren, Gordon, Kevin, Shelley, Jim, Deneen and Michael Stuart, Jim Dutton and Christine Larkin, Gregory, David, Robert Kendall and Jennifer Martin; and stepgrandchildren, Ed and Jon Gilmore, Don Frashier and Tina Kassel; numerous great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren; and two sisters, Gertrude Spencer of Troy, Idaho, and Veytha Berry of Woodland, Wash.; and two special caregivers, Rosa Lopez and Val Gorr.

She also was preceded in death by her daughter, Gloria; two grandsons, a brother and two sisters.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Eagle Valley Ambulance Fund or the American Heart Association through Grays West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814 or The Neuropathy Association, 60 East 42 St., Suite 942, New York, NY 10165-0999.

Tiana Marie Collins

Tiana Marie Collins, a 6-week-old infant Baker City resident, died Jan. 24, 2002, at her home.

Her memorial service was Jan. 28 at Grays West & Co. Lloyd Nelson officiated.

Tiana Marie Collins was born on Dec. 12, 2001, at Baker City to Crystal Tiana Pepper and Joshua Collins. Although she lived a very short life, she touched the lives of all who knew her. She loved to be held and was a beautiful little girl.

Survivors include her parents, Josh Collins and Crystal Pepper of Baker City; grandparents, Monty and Wendy Marie Wall of Baker City; grandmother, Charlotte Cain of the Tri-Cities, Wash.; grandfather, James Collins of Bingham, Maine; foster grandmother, Leona Cameron of Baker City; uncles, Alex Wall and Jesse Collins of Baker City; aunts, Jamie Collins of the Tri-Cities, Wash., Tashua Collins of Barton, Vt., and Lori Baker of Baker City; and great-grandmothers, Helen Sardo of Pendleton and LaVesta Swinyer of Baker City.

Memorial contributions may be made to the National SIDS Foundation through Grays West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.

Elletha Dooley

Elletha M. Dooley, 90, of Baker City died Feb. 7, 2002, at St. Elizabeth Health Services.

There was a private family graveside service for Mrs. Dooley today at Mount Calvary Cemetery in Portland. The Rev. Joseph Neuville, retired, officiated.

Mrs. Dooley was born on Aug. 7, 1911, at Estacada. At a young age she moved to Portland. She attended Alameda Grade School and graduated from Grant High School.

She married Robert Dooley on Dec. 31, 1932, at Portland. For many years they were residents of Milwaukie and active members of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. Prior to moving to Baker City in April 2001, the Dooleys lived at Gresham.

Mrs. Dooley loved being at home and cooking to feed the entire family. Every Sunday she made dinner for the family. Her faith and church were extremely important to her. The Dooleys also loved to go to the beach and often traveled there to spend time with friends and family.

Survivors include her children, Mike and Maureen Dooley of Woodburn, Bill and Robi Dooley of Baker City, and Peggy and Scott Taylor of Gresham; seven grandchildren, two great-grandchildren and a niece, Nancy Searles.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert, in February 1996.

Memorial contributions may be made to a favorite charity through Coles Funeral Home, 1950 Place St., Baker City, OR 97814.

Ione Stanbro

Ione Stanbro, 89, of Unity, died Feb. 8, 2002, at Unity.

Her memorial service will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Unity Grange Hall with Pastor Matt Schentz of the Burnt River Community Church officiating.

Mrs. Stanbro was born on Feb. 28, 1912, at Prairie City to Cyrus McKee and Christina A. Sorensen. She was raised and educated at Prairie City and was a Prairie City High School graduate. In 1932, she married Elwood Stanbro at Fallon, Nev. Soon after that, the couple homesteaded a place on the Little Malheur River.

Though they continued to live at Prairie City, they spent each summer on the homestead tending their cattle. They moved to Unity in 1960. Mrs. Stanbro worked as a rancher and a homemaker throughout her life.

She enjoyed fishing, doing leather work, tole painting and arts and crafts. She also enjoyed spending summers with her grandchildren.

Survivors include her sons, Duane Stanbro of Colton and Darrel Pierce of Prairie City; five grandchildren, Grant Stanbro of Colton, Lisa Rynearson of Prairie City, Lori Moore of Eltopia, Wash., and Kristi Higgins and Traci Rees, both of Newberg.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Elwood Stanbro, who died in 1997; and a sister.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Unity Volunteer Fire Department and Ambulance through Driskill Memorial Chapel, 241 S. Canyon Blvd., John Day, OR 97845.

Betty Fuller

Hazel Betty Tanner Fuller, 81, a former Baker City resident, died Feb. 10, 2002, at Brigham City, Utah, after suffering a massive stroke Feb. 3.

Visitations will be at Gillies-Petersen Funeral Chapel, 634 East 200 South, Brigham City, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday and at the Brigham City 19th Ward Chapel, 105 W. Fishburn, from 9 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. on Wednesday. Her funeral will be at this chapel at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

Concluding services will be in Baker City Thursday at 2:30 p.m. at the Baker Second Ward, Hughes Lane Chapel, 2625 Hughes Lane. Family will meet friends at the church Thursday from 1:30 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.

Interment will be at Mount Hope Cemetery.

Mrs. Fuller was born March 31, 1920, at Payson, Utah, the only child of Beswick Moroni Tanner and Annie Caroline Peterson. She married Dennis L. Fuller on May 4, 1946, at Provo, Utah, with a later sealing in the Manti Temple on July 15, 1960.

She graduated from Lincoln High School at Orem, Utah, and attended Brigham Young University for two years. She met her husband of 55 years while working at Fort Douglas, Utah, during World War II.

She was a lifelong member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While raising her family in Baker City, she served three different times as Relief Society president and in many Sunday School, Young Women, and Primary positions. Her community involvement included 19 years of PTA duties at Churchill Elementary School where all five of her children attended, president of Baker Junior High PTA, membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary and the Business and Professional Womens Association.

She worked for the U.S. Forest Service at the Baker Ranger Station and as secretary to the forest supervisor before retiring with 17 years of service in October 1982.

Upon retirement, she served three full-time temple missions for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at the Seattle Temple, the Boise Temple and the London Temple. After moving to Brigham City, Utah, in 1991 she served in different positions in the Relief Society and recently received her eight-year certificate for Danish Extraction.

She had also served in various offices in the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Desert Camp and was serving as the 1st vice captain at the time of her death.

Survivors include her husband; her five children and their spouses, James D. and Marilyn Fuller of Brigham City, Utah, Richard T. and Cheryl Fuller of Chandler, Ariz., Christopher C. and Gwen Fuller of Arlington, Va., Keri E. and Richard Hatch of Fort Campbell, Ky. and Katrina J. and Carl Ericson of Nampa, Idaho; and 22 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.