Obituaries for March 26, 2012

By Baker City Herald March 26, 2012 10:15 am

Sandra Taylor

Sandra Lee (Backlund) Taylor, 64, a former Baker City resident, died March 21, 2012.

At her request, no service was held. Any remembrance should be to plant something in her name or make a donation to an animal rescue service.

Sandra was born Jan. 12, 1948. She spent her high school years in Baker City and graduated from Baker High School before moving to Tacoma, Wash.

Sandy owned her own hair styling salon at age 19 and was instrumental in establishing one of the first companies to open trade with China in 1981, spending much time in Hong Kong. Later she lived in Paris, Athens and Monte Carlo.

Even though she lived in exotic places, Sandy was a very grounded person whose love was for her family, dogs and garden.

She is survived by her husband of 38 years John Taylor of Las Vegas, Nev.; her daughters, Bridgit Reichel of Gig Harbor, Wash., and Catherine Gajic of Las Vegas; and by four grandchildren: John and Megan Reichel and Kosandra and Gavrilla Gajic.

 Sandy was preceded in death by her father, Leonard Backlund. 


Grant Shold

Grant Theodore Shold, 94, a prominent rancher on Powder River west of Richland, died March 7, 2012, after a long illness. 

After several strokes, he was cared for by his wife, Lela, his son, Steve, and daughter-in-law Millie, grandson, Tony, many other family, church members, and volunteers.

A funeral service will be March 31, 2012, at 11 a.m. at the Richland Christian Church. Interment will be at Eagle Valley Cemetery. Friends are invited to join the family for a potluck which will be held in the Richland Christian Church fellowship hall following the interment.

Grant was born on Sept. 11, 1917, at the homestead across from the ranch where he lived all of his life in Eagle Valley. When Grant was old enough to be able to drive to school, he acted as the “school bus,” picking up fellow schoolmates along the way with his own personal vehicle.

Grant served in the Army. He especially enjoyed the last job he held in the Army which was teaching instrument flying training in Utah. Except for working at the Macy Mine on the Powder River, he spent his life ranching, combining, hauling cattle, and custom working for neighbors and friends throughout Eagle Valley and Sparta. He loved riding his horses and caring for his cattle.

He and his wife, Lela Weir, were married on May 27, 1948, in Richland. They were longtime members of the Eagle Valley Grange and active members of the Richland Christian Church. Grant served as an elder for as long as he was able. He also served on Dry Gulch Ditch board for 50 years. 

Family and friends loved to come and spend time at “the ranch.” Many showed love to Grant and Lela by honking their horn as they passed by the front of their home from the highway. Grant loved everyone and especially the young children. He liked to tease and liked to be teased about his “no hair” by combing his bald head or asking for curlers for his hair. He loved to be called “teddy bear.” He loved to fish on Eagle Creek and loved to sit on the front porch or in front of the window, which he referred to as his big TV, where he could watch the cattle and the wildlife across the river.

His life ended at a wonderful foster home run by Kathy Hickman in Baker City. He was well taken care by her staff and the Hospice people. Love flowed both ways. Thanks to all who loved and cared for Grant.

Grant is survived by his wife of 63 years, Lela; three children: son Steve Shold and his wife, Millie, who are on a mission in Mexico, daughters Nancy Schmier and her husband, Rod, of Nampa, Idaho, and Janice Kendall and her husband, Michael, of Boise; grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren; his sister, Hilda Lee; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Ben and Sarah Shold; an older sister,  Addaline Robinson; and a younger brother, Walter Shold.

Grant’s grandson, Rich McReynolds, lovingly made his pine casket. Those who would like to make a memorial donation in memory of Grant may do so to the  charity of your choice through Tami’s Pine Valley Funeral Home P.O. Box 543, Halfway, OR 97834.


Eileen Johnson

Eileen Johnson, 87, died March 12, 2012, in Baker City.  A private family gathering will be held at Eureka Cemetery outside of Newport later this summer, where she will be interred.

Eileen Edna was born on Nov. 10, 1924, in Brooklyn, N.Y., to Edward and Ruth (Stahlmann) Edstrom.  Eileen was raised along with three brothers on Long Island, N.Y.  She graduated from Sea Cliff High School in Long Island and later went on to Nursing School.

During her life, she continued to move west and eventually found her way to Baker City in 2006. Eileen had a green thumb for gardening whether it was her indoor houseplants or her outside garden. She enjoyed animals and garage sales, especially finding that bargain. She loved her children and they meant the world to her. Eileen also enjoyed the outdoors whether it be hunting or especially fishing. She also collected Angels and had a great collection of them.   

She is survived by her children: Godfrey and his wife, Ann Cernyar, of Arizona, Mary and Dante Fox of Washington, Rita Cernyar of Portland, Edward Cernyar, Judy and Marshall Smithson of Arizona, Christine and her husband, Doug Lohman, of Kendrick, Idaho, Pamela and her husband, T.L. Diggins, of Durkee, Brian Johnson and his companion, Teresa, of Terre Haute, Ind., Casey and Heather Johnson of Blodgett, Ore.; 14 grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by two children, Ruth Cernyar and Bobby Johnson; and by her grandson, Riven Alexander Johnson.

Those who wish to make a memorial donation in memory of Eileen may do so to Heart ’N Home through Tami’s Pine Valley Funeral Home P.O. Box 543, Halfway, OR 97834.