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Neighborhood activist, Roy Dancer, dies at 82

Leukemia claims Beaverton volunteer hours after he is honored by city
by: Submitted photo, ROY DANCER

Roy E. Dancer will be remembered as a force to be reckoned with when it came to fighting for his community.

Whether it was working to preserve 22 acres in the Tualatin Hills Nature Park from development or tackling tough neighborhood issues, people listened when the 82-year-old Beaverton civic activist weighed in on a topic.

'Roy was a leader - never backed away from a challenge that involved the welfare of the community,' said Jack Franklin. 'Roy always looked for the positive and sometimes how to turn a negative to a positive.

'Roy was a person that I proudly called my friend, and I will really miss his vision, leadership, friendship and sense of humor.'

Dancer died Monday night, just a few hours after being honored by the City Council for his outstanding volunteer activities, leadership and dedication to making the city a better place.

A memorial service will take place Jan. 19 at 2 p.m. in Beaverton Christian Church.

Knowing that their friend was battling leukemia and only had a short time to live, fellow Beaverton Optimists Jack Franklin and Marv Doty asked Mayor Rob Drake to proclaim January 2008 as Roy Dancer Month. Drake read the proclamation during the meeting and presented copies of it to Dancer's loyal friends.

'The city of Beaverton will forever be enriched through Roy Dancer's countless volunteer hours,' Drake said. 'He had a zeal to improve the community and a fire in his gut.

'To his last breath, I'm sure Roy still had that fire.'

The Tualatin Hills Park and Recreation District also plans to recognize Dancer's years of service and support during next Monday's regular board meeting.

'Roy was a great man and a great role model,' said Doug Menke, general manager of the park district. 'He was passionate about everything he got involved with.

'If something didn't seem right, he'd be the first person to call. He was never interested in placing blame or finger pointing, he was interested in finding solutions to move things forward.'

Dancer was a charter member of the West Beaverton Neighborhood Association Committee. In that role he rallied neighbors to preserve land and prevent inappropriate retail encroachment into nearby residential neighborhoods.

Dancer also served on several boards and service groups including Beaverton Optimists Club, Beaverton Committee for Citizen Involvement, Beaverton Police Chief's Advisory Board, Beaverton Boys and Girls Club, Beaverton Police Activities League, Beaverton Parade Steering Committee, the former Taste of Beaverton Committee, Washington County Civil Service Arbitration Board and the Tobacco-Free Coalition of Washington County.

'Roy will be remembered as a person who loved this community,' said Beaverton Police Chief David Bishop. 'He showed that through all his many activities he was involved in.'

In addition to the park district naming a three-acre site in West Beaverton Roy E. Dancer Park, Dancer has been honored with the Vergie Ries Award, Beaverton's Good Neighbor of the Year, Beaverton Optimist of the Year, the Trail Blazer Super Star Award as one of six Oregon winners and the JC Penney Golden Rule Award.

'He's an amazing man,' said Council President Catherine Arnold, who worked with him for many years on the Beaverton Committee for Citizen Involvement. 'He's been quite a mentor to me.'

'He will be greatly missed and forever remembered,' said Marv Doty.