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Obituaries for the week of 12-21-11


   Dena Marie Ayres
   January 19, 1963 - December 5, 2011
   Former Madras resident Dena Marie Ayres was called to heaven on Dec. 5, 2011, by her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
   She was born Jan. 19, 1963, in Redmond, to parents Robert "Butch" Ayres and Patricia Jean (Hill) Ayres.
   Dena lived in Madras as a child and attended school there through the seventh grade, when she moved to the Portland area to be with her mother. She worked odd jobs in her teen years, most notably as a line cook at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Portland. Soon after, she moved to the Salem area.
   Dena was fond of animals, particularly cats and horses, but her passion was dancing and music, especially rock and roll. Elton John was her all time favorite but she could also bend your ear for hours talking about Peter Frampton, Van Halen and Led Zeppelin, which were among the many she loved, which are too numerous to list.
   Miss Ayres is survived by her father, Robert Ayres of Madras, and her brother, Robert Ayres of Portland. She was preceded in death by her mother and grandmother, "Babe," with whom she had a very close bond.
   The family wishes to acknowledge Dena's friends and staff of the Marion County Mental Health Psychiatric Crisis Center, especially that of Lynn and Kim and all past and current professional personnel with their outstanding care and assistance with Dena through the many years she spent in and around the Salem area.
   A celebration of life will be held at 11a.m. on Jan. 7, at the Culver Nazarene Church, 600 Third Ave. in Culver, with a potluck to follow.
   In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to the Psychiatric Crisis Center of the Marion County Mental Health Dept. (Attn. Ann Marie), or the Oregon Humane Society. Arrangements were by Howell Edwards Doerksen with Rigdon-Ransom Funeral Home.
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   Bette Snyder Corwin
   April 26, 1939 - December 13, 2011
   Madras resident Bette Corwin passed away on Dec. 13, 2011, at the age of 72.
   Bette was born in Hutchinson, Kan., to Ralph and Anna Snyder on April 26, 1939. She graduated from Madras Union High School in 1956.
   She married Loren Corwin and lived on various ranches in Ashwood, Antelope, on the ranch of the Rajneesh, and other Oregon ranches. They raised a family of two children during this time.
   She and Loren were divorced after 25 years of marriage. Bette went to work at Roger's Drug Store, Richardson's Recreational Ranch, and Bi-Mart. She loved her jobs and meeting people.
   She is survived by son, Dale Corwin of Madras; daughter, Teri and her family of Powell Butte; her 101-year-old mother, Anna Snyder Meyers of Madras; and sister, Delores Vincent of Madras.
   She was preceded in death by her father, and a brother, Ralph Snyder Jr.
   At her request, she was cremated and no service will be held.
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   Alvin Burton Crocker
   October 20, 1934 - December 11, 2011
   Longtime Madras resident Alvin Burton Crocker passed away on Dec. 11, 2011, at the Mid Columbia Medical Center in The Dalles at the age of 77.
   Alvin was born on Oct. 20, 1934, in Granada, Colo., to parents Frank Nelson and Esther Lee (Skinner) Crocker.
   While Alvin was a child, the family came to Central Oregon where he attended schools in the Culver area, graduating from Culver High School in 1952. Alvin was a farmer in Culver until he retired in 1992.
   He was a member of the Odd Fellows Lodge as well as a past exalted ruler of the Madras BPOE 2017.
   Alvin is survived by his brother, Lewis Crocker of Moxee, Wash.; nephew and his wife, Robert and Christe Crocker of Madras; nieces and their husbands, Ann and Steve George of Moxee, Wash., and Barbara and Waylon Young of Salem; four grand-nieces and two grand-nephews. He is also survived by dear friend Terry Knuths of Madras.
   Funeral services for Alvin will be held on Thursday, Dec. 22, at 10 a.m., at Bel-Air Colonial Chapel in Madras. Graveside services will follow at Mount Jefferson Memorial Park. Arrangements are under the direction of Bel-Air Colonial Funeral Home of Madras.
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   Lorrie Karstetter
   June 26, 1956 - Dec. 13, 2011
   Lorri Karstetter of Crooked River Ranch passed away Dec. 13, 2011. A service will be held at a later date. Arrangements are under the direction of Autumn Funerals of Redmond.
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   Raymond F. Parrish
   July 25, 1924 - December 4, 2011
   Longtime Culver resident Raymond F. Parrish passed away Dec. 4, 2011, at the age of 87.
   Ray was born July 25, 1924, in Condon, Ore., during the Great Depression. He moved with his parents, Fred and Sadie (Huddleston) Parrish, to a cattle ranch in Ukiah, Ore., when he was 3, then settled in Heppner, where his father had a garage and his mother served as the county clerk for many years.
   Ray worked from the age of 12, driving all over Heppner delivering milk and ice seven days a week and making $1 a day, plus breakfast. Other jobs included running a shoe shine stand that charged 25 cents a shine, and driving the hearse for the Heppner Funeral Home.
   After quitting high school in his sophomore year, he worked on his uncle's sheep shearing crew before going into the military service.
   During World War II, he served in the Army Air Corps for three years, and learned to pilot planes. After the war, he spent a year building roads in Alaska before returning to Oregon.
   Traveling from farm to farm, Ray operated a machine that treated wheat seed for smut disease, then helped build grain elevators on the Columbia River at Rufus. During that time, he met Jessey Know from Wasco, Ore. They were married in 1948.
   In 1949, inspired by his job in Heppner, Ray decided to go into the funeral home business and began an apprenticeship. For the next 41 years, he worked at Mount Scott Funeral Home, with the last 25 being the manager.
   He served two years as the president of the Board of Funeral Directors at Mount Hood Community College, was a charter member and two-time president of the Mount Scott Kiwanis, and spent several years in the Elks Lodge, Moose Lodge, and was a member of the VFW.
   He and his wife enjoyed Central Oregon so much that they bought property by Lake Billy Chinook in 1967. They enjoyed having lots of people around and were very much loved by the community. Many will remember him as the "waving man."
   Survivors include his sons and daughters-in-law, Rick and Beth Parrish of Fairview, Ore., and Greg and Brenda Parrish of Culver; grandchildren, Shawn Parrish and his wife Michelle of Gresham, Cassey Parrish of Portland, and Jessica Parrish, of Culver; and great-grandchildren, Alyssa and Christian of Gresham, and Aiden of Culver.
   Funeral services were held Dec. 8, at Bel-Air Colonial Funeral Home of Madras, with graveside committal services on Dec. 9, at Willamette National Cemetery in Portland.
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   Johnnie W. Richardson
   January 14, 1929 - December 11, 2011
   Madras resident Johnnie W. Richardson, 82, passed away Dec. 11, 2011, at home with his family present.
   He was born Jan. 14, 1929, in Tenant, a small logging community in Northern California, to parents John Woodcock and Gertrude (Noble) Richardson. They moved to Lakeview, Ore., to pursue cattle ranching, and Johnnie attended elementary school on the Eastside and Westside. At one time, he drove a horse and sleigh, picking up neighbor kids as a young "school bus" driver for the one-room school.
   He attended and graduated from Lakeview High School, where he played football in the first game he ever saw. He lettered all four years, and played in the first East-West Shrine Game in Portland after World War II.
   With a full scholarship, he attended Oregon State College. It was at OSU that he met his future wife, Norma Adele Kennedy.
   They were married on Feb. 19, 1950, at Trinity Episcopal Church in Bend, and made their first home in Valley Falls, Ore. It was to this union that Nancy, Elizabeth, and John Chester joined the family.
   Madras became their home in late 1950, when they came to work for Norma's parents Chet and Eleanor Kennedy, who were in poor health.
   In 1951, they brought the livestock and equipment with Norma's brother, and later bought her brother's share of the business in 1962. The Richardsons purchased the ranch land and raised cattle until 1972, when TB was detected in the cow herd and they were forced to dispose of the entire herd.
   During his cattleman years, Johnnie was very active in the Jefferson County Livestock and Oregon Cattlemen's associations. He was president, Cattleman of the Year, and Father of the Year for Jefferson County, and was also active in the Trout Creek Soil Conservation Service.
   A new pursuit was soon formed with the agate business, since the ranch had always been coveted by "rockhounds," who were considered a nuisance. An article in the "Lapidary Journal" announced that people would be allowed to dig for rocks on a fee basis, for groups, reservations and weekends only.
   With so much interest, it was soon opened to digging every day.
   Also, during this phase, the Richardsons raised game birds for their shooting preserve. In 1974, a small rock shop was built, and in 1976, the famous Priday Thunderegg beds, which joined the Richardson property, were purchased.
   In 1980, Johnnie, Norma and son, John Chester, formed the Richardson's Recreational Ranch partnership.
   Johnnie was baptized with his daughter Nancy at St. Peter's Cross Keys Church in 1952. Later, St. Peter's became St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Madras.
   He joined the Masonic Lodge and Shriners, and was very active with Job's Daughters, Demolay and Eastern Star. He was associate guardian of Job's, dad advisor of Demolay, and twice an associate patron of Eastern Star. He also organized dances for teens every Saturday during the summer with Demolay.
   He led the Lyle Gap 4-H Club, and was weighmaster for the 4-H county fair livestock for 20 years. Young people were a great passion and he loved being associated with their activities. He was lovingly called "Johnnie Baby" by his Job's Daughters group.
   Playing bridge was a passion for both Johnnie and Norma. They were often accused of carrying a card table and four chairs in the trunk of their car.
   He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Norma Richardson; daughter, Nancy Hall and husband Dave of Helena, Mont., and son John Chester Richardson and wife Bonnie, at the home ranch north of Madras; brother, Edward Richardson of Lakeview; seven grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents.
   He passed away after nearly five years of traveling to Redmond three days a week for kidney dialysis. He considered the staff at the Fresenius Medical Center his second family.
   No funeral service is planned, at his request. Memorial contributions in his name have been suggested by the family to the Shrine Hospital for Children in Portland.
   Arrangements are under the direction of Bel-Air Colonial Funeral Home of Madras.
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   Robert Steven Smith
   March 26, 1941 - December 16, 2011
   Robert Steven Smith, a Madras resident since 1989, died Dec. 16, 2011 at the age of 70. No services are planned.
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   Harry Souders
   December 13, 1951 - December 13, 2011
   Madras resident Harry Souders, formerly of California, died on his birthday, Dec. 13, 2011, at the age of 60. Private family services will be held. Memorial contributions have been suggested to Disabled American Veterans.
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