Obituaries - Dec. 28 edition


Robert 'Bob' Brinster

Robert 'Bob' George Brinster of Scappoose was called home by his Father in heaven on Dec. 20, 2011, after a brief and courageous battle with brain cancer. He was 79. We are told He only calls the best to be with him.

Mr. Brinster was born March 14, 1932, in New England, N.D., the 9th child of Raphael and Kathrine (Decker) Brinster.

When he was about 4 years old his family moved to a farm 13 miles south of Belfield, to a community named Gaylord. The family became members of a nearby church named Our Lady of Lourdes.

As a young man he attended a country school from 1st through 8th grade, and was then required to work full time on the farm. He and his siblings all worked hard on the family farm raising mostly cattle and grains.

For recreation he loved to dance to the old time German music and would often attend dances at the community hall. This is where he met his life's soul mate, Dolores Frank. They dated and were married on Oct. 2, 1951.

They moved to a farm south of Belfield where they farmed and started their family. Kenneth was born in 1953, Lenora in 1955, and Duane in 1958.

In 1958, they took a family vacation to visit his sister and brother-in-law in Portland. While visiting, they were both impressed with the beauty of the state and the possibility of a new and better life for their family. They moved in 1958 and lived in Portland for three years where their final two children were born, Cheryl in 1959 and Curtiss in 1961. Farming was still in his blood and after looking at many properties they found the farm of their dreams near Scappoose. There they would work and live together for the next 50 years. They loved living on the top of the world, with the Willamette Valley to gaze upon every day.

He started working at the Co-op Linton Plywood Mill in 1958, and was a share owner until 1994 when he retired, and became a full time farmer again.

He was happiest when he was on a tractor doing custom hay work, which he did for himself and numerous customers in the Scappoose /St. Helens area. There was many a day that he would work well past dark, often putting in 15 plus hour days. But he loved it, and continued until 2011.

He was also an active member of St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Scappoose where he helped out in any capacity that was asked. While living in North Dakota he belonged to the St. Pius Verein Club, and was also a member of the Eagles Lodge Chapter #3426 in N.W. Portland.

Those that knew and loved him will always remember his quiet strength, his playful personality, and his infectious smile. His passing has left a hole in the lives of those who survive him.

He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Dolores; son and his wife, Kenneth and Marilyn Brinster; daughter, Lenora Brinster Anderson; son, Duane Brinster; daughter, Cheryl Brinster; son, Curtiss Brinster; grandchildren, Michael Anderson, Tracy (Anderson) Correa, and Caroline Brinster; and siblings, Barbara Steiner, Ralph Brinster, Adeline Durrah, Ann Frank, Eugene Brinster, Leona Selinger, and Leslie Brinster. He was preceded in death by his parents, Raphael and Kathrine (Decker) Brinster; and sisters, Amelia Dickman, Cecilia Miller, and Finnian Brinster.

Recitation of the rosary and funeral mass were held Dec. 26 at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church.

Committal service and interment were at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Cemetery.

Memorial gifts may be made to the charity of one's choice.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

LaVerne E. Marshall

LaVerne E. Marshall of Rainier died Dec. 20, 2011, at her home. She was 83.

LaVerne E. Hudson was born Dec. 31, 1927, in Artesia, Calif., to George and Mildred (Turner) Hudson.

She was educated in Artesia, and at Bachelor Flats and St. Helens High Schools.

In May of 1947 she married Eugene Marshall in St. Helens. They lived in Antioch, Calif., from 1956-1971, and then moved back to Rainier. He preceded her in death in 1978.

A homemaker, she was also a foster parent and a member of The Christian Church of St. Helens.

Early on she was a member of the Scappoose Garden Club, and she loved gardening and all types of animals.

She is survived by her children, Rebecca Derby, Vernon Marshall, Malinda Jones, and Wade Marshall, all of Rainier; nine grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; siblings, JoAnne Billings of Hillsboro, and Mike Weatherby of Malibu, Calif.; and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her son, Duane Marshall.

Graveside service and interment were held Dec. 27 at Yankton Hillcrest Cemetery in St. Helens.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Norman Munderloh

Norman Munderloh of St. Helens died Dec. 20, 2011. He was 86.

Mr. Munderloh was born April 14, 1925, in Rapid City, S.D., and was the youngest of three children.

When he was 17 he enlisted in the Naval Reserve and received an honorable discharge on April 16, 1946.

On Aug. 29, 1954, he married Carolyn Naiman at Zion Lutheran Church in Rapid City. They were married for 49 years until she passed away on June 13, 2003.

In 1960 they moved to Denver where they lived for thirty years and he worked as a sheet metal foreman. They moved back to Rapid City in 1990 to help take care of her parents.

In 2009, he moved to Oregon to live with his daughter Rebecca and her husband Jim.

His son Scott and daughter Vicki both live in Colorado. He has four grandchildren and five great grandchildren, two living in Oregon and the others in Colorado.

His favorite things to do were sing, bowl, garden, and spend time with his family.

He worked hard to send his children to Christian schools and felt very strongly about the importance of Christian education.

A kind soul, he will be missed by many.

A celebration of life will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 28 at Grace Lutheran Church in Scappoose.

Private family interment will be at Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, S.D.

Memorial gifts can be made to Columbia County Christian School, P.O. Box 448, St. Helens, OR 97051.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Joan Szedlak

Joan Szedlak of Scappoose passed away peacefully Dec. 18, 2011, at home surrounded by her children, Chuck Szedlak, Carol Sauer, Susan Updike and Sara Cunningham. She was 92.

Joan was born Feb. 22, 1919, in Portland to Charles T. Gibson and Louisa Stevens.

Educated at Grant High School and Oregon Normal School (Western Oregon University), she received an elementary education teaching certificate and taught in Aurora, Astoria and Canaan. She also substitute taught in St. Helens and Scappoose.

On June 1, 1940, she married Carl Szedlak. They had four children and her primary job was raising and taking care of her family. The family moved from St. Helens to the farm in Scappoose in 1956 where her husband had been raised.

She was a wonderful friend to many, and was involved in the PTA, Women's clubs and later the Scappoose Senior Center and Thrift Store where she did volunteer work and made new friends.

An avid reader, she also enjoyed knitting and gardening. She knitted Christmas stockings for her children and their spouses, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

She loved to travel and was fortunate to attend all of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren's graduations.

She and her husband bought a home on the San Juan Islands and spent much time enjoying friends and family in their home. She enjoyed beachcombing with family and friends.

We, her children had the opportunity to say thank you and repay her for being our 'rock' and she had the opportunity to receive gratitude and to rest like a tree in winter.

She is survived by her children, Chuck Szedlak, Carol Sauer, Susan Updike and Sara Cunningham; eight grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Carl Szedlak; and son-in-law, Louis Updike.

At her request there will be no services. During the summer her family will celebrate her life.

Memorial gifts may be made to Legacy Hospice, Scappoose Senior Center or the Columbia County Humane Society.