Gail Kepler

Baker City, 1942-2017

Gail Sanders Kepler, 74, of Baker City, died peacefully on Sept. 15, 2017, at a hospice care center in Baker City after a lengthy battle with colon cancer.

Gail was the second child born to Harold Sanders and Lois (Honeycutt) Sanders. Gail was born on Sept. 29, 1942, at Everett, Washington. Her family moved to Pine Valley in 1943, where they resided with Lois’ parents, Gwendolyn and W.D. Honeycutt, while Harold went to serve in World War II.

Upon Gail’s dad’s return, Harold and Lois purchased land in upper Carson on Pine Creek. There they began building their home. The terrible misfortune of a hunting accident took the life of Gail’s dad. Gail, her brother, Stephen, and mother, Lois, continued on in Pine Valley.

After a time, Lois met Jarold Bowerman, a Pine Valley native, and they were married. In 1955, Jarold accepted a job offer in Lakewood, Washington. Gail’s family packed and moved to Lakewood, a suburb of Tacoma, Washington. There, Gail and her siblings grew and continued in school.

Gail married John Ross in 1960 and lived in Tacoma, Washington, until they divorced. She then returned to the local area and moved to Baker to work. Gail then met Robert Kepler of Halfway. They fell in love and were married. Bob and Gail moved to Orofino, Idaho, where they worked and raised a family.

After a while, work took them to Reno, Nevada. Unfortunately, in Reno they separated and divorced.

Gail returned to Tacoma to live and work. Eventually, like a dove, Gail came back to Pine Valley and worked at Stockmen’s for a while, then moved to Baker City, where she finally retired.

Gail liked the bright lights and busy pace of city living, but she always called Pine Valley home. We will always remember her for her generous and compassionate nature, her family said. She always had a smile and hug ready.

Gail is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Kimberly and Jack Johnson of Aspen, Colorado; her son and daughter-in-law, Dale and Ada Kepler of Pocatello, Idaho; five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren; her siblings, Stephen and Terry Rae Bowerman of San Angelo, Texas, Michael and Angelika Bowerman of Mount Lake Terrace, Washington, Linnelle and David Osman of Pine Valley, and close cousins, John Wright of Halfway and Lynda Masterson of Baker City.

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