Obituaries for the week of June 25 to June 29

June 29, 2001 12:00 am

Grace Irby

Grace Winifred Irby, 73, a lifetime Baker City resident, died June 27, 2001, at St. Elizabeth Health Care Center.

Her funeral will be at 2 p.m. Monday at the Coles-Strommer Funeral Home, 1950 Place St. Pastor Roger Scovil of the Baker City Christian Church will officiate. Vault interment will be in Mount Hope Cemetery. Friends and family are invited to the Baker Elks Lodge, 1896 Second St., for a time of fellowship and sharing after the service.

Mrs. Irby was born on Sept. 17, 1927, at Baker City to Roy and Lenora Anderson. She was a 1946 Baker High School graduate. She married Walter Truscott Irby at the Wingville Grange Hall on Oct. 10, 1946.

She was a wonderful wife and mother, whose love, caring, and kindness flowed from her heart to everyone she met and spent time with. She found great joy in caring and loving people. Her family and friends were surrounded by her love.

She endeavored to create happiness by her sensitive response to the feelings of others, always wanting to help in any way. She was a beautiful child of God, her irreplaceable spirit will be ever present in the memories of family and friends she leaves behind.

She was a seventh-degree member of the National Grange, sixth-degree member of the Oregon State Grange and fifth-degree member of the Baker County Pomona Grange. She was an active member of the Wingville Grange for 56 years.

She also was a member of the Ladies of the Elks, and Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion auxiliaries. She spent a wonderful year in 1987-88 as first lady of the Oregon State Elks when her husband, Truscott, was president of the Oregon State Elks Association.

Her hobbies were her devotion to her husband, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She also enjoyed reading and attending rodeos.

Survivors include her beloved husband, Truscott; four children: a daughter, Lenora, and her husband, Richard Way, their children, Lisa, and her husband, Mark Becker, and their children, Kimberly, Kassandra, and Kaila, John Way and his wife, Jodie, and their children, Ashlea and Taylor; a son, Rod Irby, and wife, Susan, and their children, Krystal and Heather; daughter, Zona Irby, and her fiance, Mick Hiatt; and a daughter, Carolyn Irby, and her fiance, Stu Davis; her brother, Andy Anderson, and his wife, Beverly, and their children Gary, Greg, Ron, and Larry; and her sister in-law, Edith Morin, and her daughter, Glenabell, and husband, Bink Lewis.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Roy and Lenora Anderson; and her sister, Edith Campbell.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Association through the Coles-Strommer Funeral Home, 1950 Place St., Baker City, Ore., 97814.

Harold Wiester

Harold W. Wiester, 92, of Issaquah, Wash., a former Baker City resident, died on June 26, 2001, at his home.

His funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. Friday at St. Madeleine Sophie Catholic Church, 4400 130th Place S.E., Bellevue, Wash. There will be a reception after the service at the church. Committal will be at 1:45 p.m. at the Floral Hills Cemetery at Lynnwood, Wash.

Mr. Wiester was born on June 26, 1909, at Everett, Wash., to Charles Dick and Alice Wiester. He was raised in Edmonds and graduated from Edmonds High School in 1927. He married Emily Irene Street at Tacoma, Wash., on May 20, 1939. They lived at Edmonds until 1951, when they moved to Baker City. He and his wife raised their children in Baker City.

They retired to Arizona in 1984 and to Bellevue in 1995 to be closer to their family. Mr. Wiester was an active member of the Knights of Columbus and a lifetime member of the Elks Lodge.

Survivors include his wife; two daughters, Sharon M. Burke of Redmond and Lorene Colton of Baker City; a son Stephen Wiester, of Anchorage, Alaska; 10 grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of ones choice.

Friends are invited to sign the familys online guest book at

Arrangements are by Flintofts Issaquah Funeral Home.

Russell Thoreson

Russell N. Thoreson, 81, of Haines, died June 22, 2001, at the Grande Ronde Hospital in La Grande.

A private memorial service will take place later. Arrangements are under the direction of Daniels Chapel of the Valley.

Mr. Thoreson was born Oct. 20, 1919, in Minnesota to Mr. and Mrs. Thoreson. He later moved with his family to Gresham, where he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served his country during World War II. He was a heavy equipment operator for many years.

On Nov. 30, 1979, he married Maxine Boese in Portland. They later moved to Eastern Oregon.

Mr. Thoreson was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the Elks Lodge for many years. He enjoyed operating heavy equipment, fishing, hunting, and most of all will be remembered for being a good dad, granddad, and foster dad.

He is survived by his wife, Maxine Thoreson of Haines; his children, John Thoreson of John Day, David Cannon of Cascade Locks, Sam Snyder of Gresham, and Sonja Lyman of Baker City; 12 grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild; one brother; and numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

He was preceded in death by a sister and two brothers.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Shriners Hospital for Children in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St., La Grande, Ore., 97850.

Rhoda Davis

Rhoda A. Davis, 88, of Bend, a former Baker County resident, died June 22, 2001, at Bend.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Wednesday at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church at Bend. Mass will be celebrated by the Most Rev. Thomas J. Connolly, bishop emeritus, of the Diocese of Baker. Recitation of the rosary will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Niswonger, Reynolds & Tabor Chapel at Bend. Committal and burial will be at the Pilot Butte Cemetery.

Mrs. Davis was born on Sept. 4, 1912, at Wood River, Neb. Her family moved to Payette, Idaho, in 1916 when she was 4 and she attended school in that area. She married Alphonsus Michael Davis in Ontario on Sept. 7, 1928. Together they raised eight girls and seven boys.

The couple lived in and around Boise and Idaho City for the first years of their marriage. In 1940, they moved to Tacoma, Wash., where Mr. Davis worked in the shipyards during World War II. They moved to Baker City in 1945 and later had acreage in Haines for many years. In 1987, they moved to Bend to be with their daughter.

Mrs. Davis was a dedicated mother and wife. She was skilled in every aspect of homemaking, from cooking, canning and sewing to gardening. In 1958, she and Mr. Davis acquired a schoolhouse in the country, which she helped renovate for a home. She often remarked that she moved her family to the country schoolhouse to teach them a thing or two. It became her favorite home.

Mrs. Davis was active in school activities during the many years her children were attending school and was generally called upon to provide transportation to school as well for special events. Classmates and neighborhood children were always welcome at her home.

She was a member of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church.

Survivors include her sons, Patrick of Florence, Dennis of Las Vegas, Nev., Thomas of Bend and David of Toledo; daughters, Mary Ann Davis of Bend, Carolyn Ciula of Fresno, Barbara Walker and Sharon Davis of Florence, Kathy Mason and Betty Davis of Eugene and Therese Davis of Antioch, Calif.; two sisters, Mildred Darewit of Nevada City, Calif., and MaryLou Cartwright of Grass Valley, Calif.; and 30 grandchildren, 22 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Al M. Davis, who died less than three weeks ago; her parents; three sons, John of Eugene, Robert of Tacoma, Wash., and Andrew of Baker City; a daughter, Helen of Bend; and a brother, Lowell of Placerville, Calif.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Diocese of Baker, 911 S.E. Armour Road, Bend, Ore. 97702.