Norma Adele Kennedy Richardson

May 19, 1929 - June 30, 2014-

Norma RichardsonNorma Adele Kennedy Richardson was born on May 19, 1929 in Bend, Ore. To parents, Chester and Eleanor Kennedy. She spent most of her life on the family ranch she loved near Willowdale.

Norma rode her horse to grade school at the Cross Keys School near Willowdale and next door to her grandma and grandpa Cram’s home. She attended St. Helen’s Hall Episcopal School in Portland for her junior and senior years living with her older sister, Sybil. She attended Oregon State College, where she met Johnnie Richardson and they were married on February 19, 1950 at Trinity Episcopal Church in Bend. They moved to Valley Falls to ranch and within a year moved to the family ranch in Central Oregon when her father became ill.

The Richardson’s had two children, Nancy Elizabeth and John Chester. In 1957, they bought the livestock and equipment with Norma’s brother, Norman, and after buying him out in 1962, they purchased the ranch land and raised cattle until 1972 when TB was detected in the cattle herd and they were forced to dispose of the entire herd.

A new pursuit was soon formed with the agate business since the ranch had always been coveted by rock hounds. An article in the Lapidary Journal announced that people would be allowed on a fee basis, for groups with reservations and on weekends only. With so much interest, it was soon open every day.

The Richardson’s with the assistance of Nancy and her husband Dave Hall operated a shooting preserve and raised game birds during this time. In 1974, a rock shop was built and in 1976, the famous Priday Thunderegg Beds, which adjoined the Richardson property were purchased. In 1980, Johnnie, Norma, Nancy and John Chester formed the Richardson Recreational Ranch Ltd. Partnership. Later, son John bought daughter, Nancy’s interest in the partnership.

Norma was a life-long member of the Episcopal Church, a long-time member of the Eastern Star and served as Worthy Matron, and she was Guardian of the Jobs Daughters for many years. Both Johnnie and Norma loved working with children and young adults. They mentored many young people through their involvement with Jobs, DeMolay and their close and endless involvement with their children’s schooling. Often many of the young people lived extended periods in their home and on the ranch. They both were very loving, caring parents, grandparents, and great grandparents. Norma loved to play bridge with her best friend, Laurice Ochs, playing twice a week at the Senior Center.

She is survived by daughter, Nancy (Dave) Hall of Helena, Mont.; son, John (Bonnie) Chester at the family ranch; brother, Norman (Louise) of Portland; seven grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Johnnie; her sister, Sybil; brother, Buddy; and her parents.

Words cannot express the amount of sorrow the family has for the loss of this truly beautiful, caring, loving woman. But now she is reunited with her beloved husband, Johnnie in heaven. The world is a better place because of her life and love. She will forever be loved and never forgotten.

Her wish was not to have a funeral service. Her ashes will be placed with her husbands in a monument/shrine overlooking the ranch they loved.

Any donations are asked to be directed to the Shriners Hospital in Portland, Ore.