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Obituaries for week of 7-11-12

Obits
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   Garen Eugene Ballard
   May 4, 1972 - July 8, 2012
   Redmond resident Garen Eugene Ballard, formerly of Madras, passed away July 8, 2012, at the age of 40.
   Garen was born in Redmond to Lynn (Martin) and Gary Eugene Ballard. He graduated from Madras Senior High School in 1991.
   He was employed as a window glazer at Alpine Glass Co. He did all of the glass at the Madras Aquatic Center and many other commercial buildings around Oregon, Washington and Alaska.
   His interests were, first and foremost, his beautiful girls, racing, body building, and hanging with his buddies.
   He is survived by his daughters, Unity J. Ballard, and Charisma Del-Ray Ballard; his parents, Lynn and Larry Heckathorn; his brothers, Gerald and George Ballard; his sister, Shanon Shatto; and many nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
   Garen was preceded in death by his father, Gary E. Ballard, and his son, Ace E. Ballard.
   Memorial services will be held at 2 p.m., Friday, July 13, at the Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, 395 S.E. C St., Madras.
   On July 21, the Madras Speedway will also hold a memorial event honoring Garen Eugene Ballard.
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   James Almon Lewis Burr
   August 25, 1927 - June 29, 2012
   Jim Almon Lewis Burr, 84, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on June 29, 2012, following an automobile accident on June 26, 2012.
   Jim was born on Aug. 25, 1927, in Waunakee, Wis., to parents Allen and Norma Burr.
   The family moved to Milton Freewater, Ore., where Jim graduated from high school in 1945. The following two years were spent in the Army Air Corp. From 1947 until graduation in 1951, Jim attended Oregon State University and received a degree in soil science.
   He met his beautiful wife of 63 years, Leora "Lee" Bowman, during his junior year at OSU. They were married on Sept. 4, 1949, in Pendleton, Ore.
   Following graduation, the couple moved to Hermiston, where Jim worked at the OSU Hermiston Research Station for several years. In 1954 the family moved to Tucumcari, N.M., and Jim worked at the agricultural research station.
   Jim's love of Oregon called him back to work for the Soil Conservation Service in LaGrande, and then on to Madras where Jim joined the OSU Extension Service until 1973. The next move was to Ontario, Ore., to be the OSU Extension onion production specialist. During this time Jim traveled to Japan and later he and Lee led tours in Europe and Russia for growers.
   After Jim's retirement from the Extension Service in 1982, he and Lee moved to Bend and he became a water and soil consultant.
   Jim was highly respected and honored for his contributions to Oregon agriculture. He was inducted into the Oregon State University Pioneers and the Onion Hall of Fame by the onion industry. The Professor Emeritus recognition was awarded to him for his excellent contributions to growers and farmers and for his hands-on knowledge of his profession.
   He was an avid sports fan and especially enjoyed those involving his kids or grandkids. His OSU Beavers were at the top of his list and he loved wearing orange and black whenever possible.
   Jim devoted his life to the love of his family, his friends and his Lord. He had an incredibly giving heart. He was very active within Trinity Episcopal Church and it's ministries and the Cursillo Community of Eastern Oregon.
   Survivors include his wife, Lee Burr; four children, Jay Burr, Laurie McCreery, Kent Burr and Terry Burr; 12 grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.
   A memorial service was held at Trinity Episcopal Church in Bend on Friday, July 6. Memorial contributions may be made to Family Kitchen in care of Trinity Episcopal Church in Bend.
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   Alexander "Sandy" McKay
   May 25, 1912 - June 29, 2012
   Alexander "Sandy" Finlayson McKay passed away at the Haven House in Fossil, Ore., on June 29, 2012, at the age of 100.
   Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, July 7, at St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Madras, followed by a reception.
   Sandy was born May 25, 1912, in Antelope, to Murdoch and Catherine (Finlayson) McKay. He had an older sister, Cathy. He spent most of his life in Antelope, and his last four years at the Haven House in Fossil.
   He left school after finishing the eighth grade to help raise money for his mother's medical bills. He started work on the Big Muddy Ranch, where he spent 5 1/2 years working on the ranch, riding for cattle, and herding sheep to the mountains for summer pasture. Sandy would ride on horseback into town to visit his mother whenever possible, until her death.
   On Dec. 12, 1933, he married Frances Hastings, an Antelope native. Together, they had seven children: Peggy Lively, Sandra Foster, Herb McKay, Tom McKay, Mick McKay, Diane Giovanini and Shirley Roats.
   In 1947, Sandy and Frances purchased 3,000 acres that bordered his father's original homestead. After combining the two pieces of land, he raised grain and hay crops while continuing to manage his cattle operation.
   In 1960, decorative stone was discovered on his ranch. He sold and delivered the stone throughout the Northwest. Sandy continued working and helping on the ranch until his mid-90s. The ranch is now operated by his eldest son, Herb.
   Sandy was well-known for his lifetime passion for the sport of rodeo. Most especially, he enjoyed the bronc riding event. Throughout his years, he could be found gathering wild horses and helping at many of the area rodeos.
   He served as the 2001 Wheeler County Fair Grand Marshall. On May 25, 2012, he celebrated his 100th birthday, with over 350 people in attendance. Sandy enjoyed life and was best known for his immense love for family, storytelling and long friendships.
   Survivors include his seven children; 20 grandchildren; 36 great-grandchildren; 10 great-great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Frances McKay, in 1999; and two grandchildren.
   In lieu of flowers, memorial donations have been suggested to the Haven House, P.O. Box 386, Fossil, OR 97830. To leave an online condolence message for the family, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Sweeney Mortuary of Condon is in charge of arrangements.
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   Joyce Bernice Ashcraft Richards
   October 11, 1921 - July 1, 2012
   Longtime Madras resident Joyce Bernice Ashcraft Richards, 90, passed away peacefully on July 1, 2012, at Mountain View Hospital, with her daughters by her side.
   She was born in a small house on the banks of the Snake River on Oct. 11, 1921, in Adrian, Ore., to William and Susana Stacy Ashcraft. Her parents owned the Adrian Drive-in Market. She attended grade school at Kingdom Colony, just out of Adrian, and high school at Nyssa, Ore., graduating in 1939. She started working as a very young girl in her parents' market and in their home cooking and cleaning.
   She married Ira Richards on Sept. 6, 1941, in Nampa, Idaho. They farmed in Notis, Idaho, where they had two daughters. They moved to Madras in 1948, and farmed on the Agency Plains, where two more daughters were born.
   She was a perfect mother and cook (she even cooked for the thrashing crew when her children were little), and made the best candies at Christmas time. She never left a thing undone.
   The Richards retired in 1978, and moved to town. They spent winters in Arizona, and summers at Winchester Bay, Ore. She loved to salmon fish, and crab, and always caught the biggest and the most. She loved her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was a member of the Lady Elks and Rebekah Lodge.
   She lost Ira in 2000. They were married almost 60 years, and she missed him so much.
   Survivors include her daughters and their spouses, Connie and Kenneth Bierman of Madras, Dianna and Doug Woods of Oregon City, Jackie and Scott Kiser of Milwaukie, and Cherie and Greg Gassner, of Sutherlin, Ore; nephews, John Hamilton of Boise, Idaho, and Steve Robins of Redmond; 11 grandchildren; 18 great-grandchildren; and seven great-great-grandchildren.
   She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents and a sister.
   A celebration of life will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to the Opportunity Foundation, P.O. Box. 430, Redmond, OR 97756. Arrangements are under the direction of Bel-Air Colonial Funeral Home of Madras.