Obituaries for the week of Oct. 17 to Oct. 21

October 25, 2005 12:00 am

Harvey Witham

Harvey Edward Witham, 89, a fourth-generation Baker City resident, died Oct. 19, 2005.

His memorial service will be at 2 p.m. Saturday at Gray's West & Co., 1500 Dewey Ave. Pastor Lennie Spooner of the First Church of the Nazarene will officiate.

Harvey was born on April 30, 1916, in Baker City to William and Maud Moeller Witham.

He attended Brooklyn Elementary School and was a 1934 graduate of Baker High School. Thereafter he worked for his uncle, Ed Moeller, in Baker City.

As a young man he worked on many of the projects of Baker City. He was hod carrier for the brick masons who built Helen M. Stack Middle School. He was married on July 26, 1941, to Hertha E. LaBrier. In 1941 he was drafted by the U.S. Army, and served as a carpenter in Hollandia, New Guinea.

When he returned home from the service he and his brother, Fred, started Witham Bros. Construction. His brothers, Bill and Tom, also worked in the construction industry. They built several buildings including the Lutheran and Methodist churches, Baker Bulldog Memorial Stadium at Baker High School, the Ellingson plywood plant in south Baker and the Levingers building after the fire, the Production Credit building, bridges in Durkee and Halfway, and many residences.

His hobbies included wood working, carving, and stained glass. He built many pieces of furniture for each of his children and grandchildren. He was involved in the restoration of several stained glass windows at the St. Francis de Sales Cathedral. He worked to complete the stained glass windows at Calvary Baptist Church.

He was a 50-year member of the Elks Lodge, Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion. He served on the St. Elizabeth Hospital Board, the Baker County Fair Board, and the Civil Service Commission.

Survivors include his daughters and their husbands, Evelyn and Bob Ryan of Pennsylvania, Jeanne and Terry Schumacher of Baker City, Reba and Kenny Sharp of Beaverton, and Anna and David Baum of La Grande; his brother, Tom Witham, and his wife, Carol, of Baker City; his grandchildren, Mike Ryan, Mollie Peiren, and Mitch Ryan, all of New York, Thom Schumacher of Texas, Jacki Adams of Baker City, Carolyn Reagan of La Grande, Shad Sharp and Silene Rush of Portland, Regan Baum of Kentucky, Aleck Baum, Karl Baum, and Leigh Baum, all of La Grande; five great-grandchildren, Brendan and Alyson Ogan, Ashley and Josie Reagan and Jada Rush. He also has a great-grandson who is to be born in December.

He was preceded in death by his mother and father, Will and Maud Witham; his brothers, Fred and Bill Witham; his sister, Evelyn Grant; and his loving wife of 61 years, Hertha Witham.

Memorial contributions may be made through Gray's West, P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR, 97814, for the Honduras Medical Team. Make checks payable to the Nazarene Church.

Ferdinand Boesch

Ferdinand Boesch, 103, of Haines, died Oct. 18, 2005, at Settlers Park in Baker City.

His funeral will be Saturday at 10 a.m. at Gray's West & Co. Pioneer Chapel, 1500 Dewey Ave. Pastor Robin Harris of the Cornerstone Baptist Church in North Powder will officiate.

Visitations will be Friday from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Gray's West & Co. Vault interment will be at Haines Cemetery.

Ferdinand was born April 23, 1902, in West New York, N.J., to Frdiolinus "Fred" and Anna Wichser Boesch. The family left New Jersey when Ferdinand was three months old, residing in Salinas, Calif. They moved to Baker County in 1912 and lived in the Lone Pine district near Hunt Mountain.

Ferdinand farmed in the Muddy Creek community for many years. He enjoyed photography, music, hunting and fishing. He was the first bow hunter in Baker County.

He married Bertha Warfield of Haines in 1932. The couple had four children, AnnaBelle, Bonnie Lee, Donald Glen and Dora Mae. Bonnie died in 1979. Bertha died in 1998.

Survivors are AnnaBelle Boesch of Beaverton, Donald Glen of Pendleton and Dora M. Gourley of Durham; grandchildren, Brenda Deskin of Tualatin, Melissa Paradis, Melinda Dickson, and Michele Cason, all of Texas, Jeff Boesch of Hermiston, Jerry Boesch of Walla Walla, Wash., and Janell Leake of Helix; 11 great-grandchildren; and two great-great grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Foundation Fighting Blindness or to the American Heart Association through Gray's West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.

Bessie Attaway

Bessie Attaway, 102, of Baker City, died Oct. 16, 2005, at St. Elizabeth Care Center.

Her memorial graveside service will be at 2 p.m. Friday at Mount Hope Cemetery. Pastor Lennie Spooner of the First Church of the Nazarene will officiate.

Bessie was born on Nov. 7, 1902, at Attica, Ind. She was the fourth of nine children born to James and Stella McCulley. As a young girl she moved with her family to Phoenix, Ariz. She spent most of her childhood and school years there.

Bessie met and married her high school sweetheart, Alford Attaway, at Phoenix. They were married 61 years. Their married life was spent in Southern California.

Bessie was known by her family and friends affectionately as "Grandma Bessie." She loved knitting, crocheting, fishing, gardening and camping.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Al, who died in 1981 and was the last surviving sibling.

"We all will miss our Grandma Bessie. For almost 103 years she cared for all, without a complaint," her family said.

Survivors include her son, Jim Attaway, and his wife, Connie, of Baker City; four grandchildren, Cathy Blankinship, Johnny Attaway, Susie Cassidy and Danny Attaway; six great-grandchildren and nine great-great grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Rachel Center through Gray's West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.

L. Dawn Reddick-Bowman

L. Dawn Reddick-Bowman, 80, of Eugene, a former Baker City resident, died Oct. 7, 2005, of chronic leukemia.

American Burial & Cremation alternatives of Springfield was in charge of arrangements.

Reddick-Bowman was born on June 6, 1925, at Baker City to Harry and Catherine Washburn. She was married to Ronald Bowman in Idaho. He later died.

Previously, she was married to Wilson "Bill" Reddick of Grants Pass. He died in 1993.

She graduated from high school and worked in retail sales. She had lived at Eugene for four years and previously had lived at Grants Pass and Baker City. She enjoyed fishing, gardening and cooking and was an artist.

Survivors include two daughters, Debra Blixseth of Eugene and Lisa Millett of Tampa, Fla.; two sons, Gary Reddick of Portland and Tom Reddick of Junction City; two sisters, Varene York of Baker City and Patty Stockdale of Roy, Wash.; five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Baker City Fire Department and the Baker City Food Co-op.

Beaulah Henry

Beaulah E. Henry, 92, of Baker City, died Oct. 14, 2005, at her home.

At her request, there will be no local funeral service. Family graveside services and burial will be in Rohnerville, Calif. Coles Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Beaulah was born Feb. 16, 1913, in DeQueen, Ark. She married Robert W. Henry on March 22, 1931, in Mineral, Ark. They lived in many locations, moving from place to place with Mr. Henry's work. In 1980 they moved from Fortuna, Calif., to Baker City, where they enjoyed their retirement years.

Beaulah loved to fish and oftentimes out-fished her husband. They had many good times fishing at the reservoir and Snake River. She enjoyed gardening and had a huge vegetable and flower garden. She enjoyed quilting and made many lovely quilts for family and friends.

She is survived by her daughter, Mildred "Sue" Storzbach, of Baker City; a son, Robert Henry and his wife, Judith, of Santa Rosa, Calif.; a brother, Pat Burns of Deloris, Colo.; a sister, Tollie Kramer of Washington; eight grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; 11 great-great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Beaulah was preceded in death by her husband, Robert W. Henry; her daughter, Bessie Mae; and her son, Kenneth Earl Henry.

Contributions in Mrs. Henry's memory may be made to Guardian Hospice in care of Coles Funeral Home, 1950 Place St., Baker City, OR 97814.

Alfred Stemen

Alfred Weldon Stemen, 54, of Baker City, died Oct. 12, 2005, in Boise.

His funeral will be Tuesday at 2 p.m. at Gray's West & Company Pioneer Chapel, 1500 Dewey Ave., followed by interment at Mount Hope Cemetery with military honors by the National Guard. Shirley McLin of Baker City will officiate.

Visitations will be today from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Gray's West & Co.

Alfred was born Nov. 12, 1950, in Boise to Alfred W. Stemen and Billie Katherin Burke Stemen. He joined the United States Army in 1968 and was assigned to H Troop 17th Armored Cavalry. Alfred served proudly and with honor in Vietnam, earning numerous Army decorations including two Purple Heart medals. The second Purple Heart medal was awarded after Alfred suffered combat wounds, which caused the amputation of both legs.

While recovering from his injuries, he married Michel Ann Filtcher with whom he had four children. Alfred moved his family to Baker City in 1983. He was a quiet and proud man who loved his country and family above all else.

Alfred is survived by his sons: Randy Stemen of Boise, Cheyenne Stemen and his wife, Tammy, of La Grande, and Jeremy Stemen and his wife, Vicki, of Fort Irvin, Calif.; a daughter, Stephanie Stemen and her husband, Oran McClellan, of Sumter, S.C.; and seven grandchildren, Tristen, Joshua, Christian, Adrienne, Kayla, Sara and Ashley.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Alfred's name may be made to the Purple Heart Association or Disabled American Veteran's Association in care of Gray's West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.