Pomeroy Washington Downtown National Historic District

Pomeroy Washington city cemetery

2009 Funeral Notices and Obituaries for Pomeroy Related People

James Cormac (Jim) McCabe

James Cormac (Jim) McCabe, 87, a lifelong Pomeroy resident, died Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2009, at Garfield County Long Term Care Center.

Jim was born on April 6, 1922, in Pomeroy, to pioneer Pomeroy parents, Charles Alexander and Anne Marie Mock McCabe.

He attended Holy Rosary Catholic School until the eighth grade and then attended Pomeroy High School, graduating in 1940. He then attended Gonzaga University at Spokane until entering the U.S. Marine Corps in 1942. During World War II, he served in the Pacific Theater of Operations as a bomb disposal officer. He was a captain at the time of his discharge in 1946. After his military service, he returned to school at the University of Washington in Seattle. He graduated in 1947 and returned to Pomeroy.

Jim married Ruthie Nadine Stallcop in Pomeroy on Sept. 17, 1949. She died Dec. 27, 1984.

He purchased a part interest in Emerson-Hull Company, a department store in town, which he operated until closing it in 1962. He then formed the McCabe Insurance Company, which he owned and operated - along with Garfield Title Company, which he formed in 1968 - until his retirement in 2003.

Jim began as a volunteer fireman with the Pomeroy Fire Department in 1938 and served for 50 years, until retiring in 1988. He was the fire chief from 1967 until his retirement.

Jim was also the Pomeroy city clerk from 1965 until 1987 and served as municipal court judge from 1975 until 1985.

He was a former member and past president of the Pomeroy Kiwanis Club and a member and past commander of the Pomeroy American Legion Post. He was a member of the Pomeroy Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Jim was a member, past grand knight and past district deputy of the Knights of Columbus. He was a communicant, lector, extraordinarey minister of the Eucharistic, and member of the parish council at Holy Rosary Catholic Church.

He was a member and past president of the Garfield County Pioneer Association, as well as a member and past president of the Pomeroy Alumni Association. He was a member of the Pomeroy Chamber of Commerce.

Jim was an adult Boy Scout leader for 10 years, and was an avid lifelong fly fisherman and camper.

Survivors include his son, Wynne, and wife Kim McCabe of Pomeroy; daughters Mollie McCabe of Blaine, Wash., and Sheila and husband Ed DeLozier of Hood River, Ore.; and one brother, Bert McCabe of La Conner, Wash. He also leaves five grandchildren, Wynne and Michelle DeLozier of Oregon City, Ore., Devin and Kimberly DeLozier of Long Beach, Calif., Adam and Annie McCabe of Tacoma, Erin McCabe of Seattle and Collin McCabe of Kennewick; and four great-grandchildren, John Austin, Bennett and Tyler DeLozier of Long Beach and Macie McCabe of Tacoma, with two more due in 2010.

Jim was preceded in death by an infant daughter, Elizabeth Ann; his sister, Kathleen Vassar; and brothers Patrick and Robert McCabe.

A rosary was recited and a funeral Mass was celebrated at Rosary Catholic Church in Pomeroy. Memorials can be made to the Garfield County Ambulance Memorial or the Holy Rosary Cemetery Endowment.

Lester R. Koller

Lester R. Koller, 89, died of natural causes Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2009, in Seattle at the Swedish Cherry Hill Hospital.

Lester was born Nov. 10, 1919, to Richard H. and Ollie M. Koller in the Lynn Gulch area of Garfield County; he was number nine of 13 children.

In 1933, Lester graduated from eighth grade in the Lynn Gulch one-room schoolhouse. In the fall of 1938, he attended high school. Lester graduated from Pomeroy High School in 1941.

He signed up for the U.S. Army Air Corps on Oct. 2, 1942. He was called to duty on Feb. 3, 1943. He received his wings May 23, 1943, at Williams Field in Chandler, Ariz. Lester's flight training was in a P-38. However, while in Europe, he joined the 367th Fighter Group and that group flew P-47s. The squadron was in the 9th Air Force and flying cover for the 3rd Army, commanded by Gen. Patton. He received an honorable discharge from the armed forces Nov. 27, 1945.

He and Wilma L. Gimlin were married May 4, 1946, in Lewiston. They made their home and raised their four children in Pomeroy. After working on the family farm, he went on to start a crop dusting business. In 1965, he and Wilma decided the business of flying for a living is best left to someone younger, so he sold both planes.

He then bought the Carnation and Arden Milk Distributorship from Floyd Koberstein. Lester drove semi-truck for Dye Seed Ranch for a number of years. He worked for Garfield County as an equipment operator, he sold real estate based out of Spokane and operated heavy equipment for a construction company in the Tri-Cities.

When he retired in 1990, he and Wilma bought a house in Spokane, and moved there to be close to children and grandchildren. While living in Spokane, Lester sold real estate through his son's brokerage firm and drove combine on his niece's farm in Malden, Wash., during wheat harvest. Lester and Wilma moved to Clarkston last November to avoid the harsh Spokane winters.

Lester was a lifetime member and past president of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, a member of the Free Masons of Washington state, a member of the Elks Lodge, a member of the Spokane Association for Realtors and past president of the Pomeroy JayCees.

His hobbies included golfing, fishing, hunting, snowmobiling and card games.

He is survived by his four children and their spouses, Richard L. and Jeanette R. Koller of Spokane, Sandra L. and David A. Brunstetter of Bellevue, Wash., Kerri K. and Edward J. Ledgerwood of Scottsdale, Ariz., and Donald J. and Stephanie D. Koller of Auburn Hills, Mich.; nine grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and four siblings, Marie Koller Hutchens of Auburn, Wash., J. Gilbert Koller of Edmonds, Wash., Donald Koller and Robert Koller, both of Pomeroy.

He was preceded in death by his parents Richard H. Koller and Ollie M. Koller; his wife of 63 years, Wilma L. Koller; granddaughter Crystal K. Geer; and eight siblings, Virgie Oldenburg, Blanche Ruark, Clarence Koller, Mabel Koller, Edwin Koller, Raymond Koller, Dorothy Feider and Helen Jean Smelcer.

A memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday at Richardson-Brown Funeral Home in Pomeroy.

Father Michael Joseph McKeirnan

Father Michael J. McKeirnan died on Tuesday, September 22, 2009, at St. Teresa’s Residence, Maryknoll, New York. He was 95 years old and a Maryknoll priest for 68 years.

obit photo of Kathleen McKeirnan, Pomeroy

Michael Joseph McKeirnan was born in Pomeroy, Washington on September 20, 1914. He was the fourth of nine children born to Joseph and Rose Jasper McKeirnan. One of his sisters is Sister Agnes McKeirnan, M.M., who worked in Hong Kong. He attended Holy Rosary Parochial School, and in September 1928 he enrolled at St. Joseph’s College, Mountain View, as a seminarian for the Diocese of Spokane, Washington. He joined Maryknoll in 1934 at the Venard, Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, and was ordained a priest at Maryknoll Seminary, New York, on June 22, 1941.

Father McKeirnan was assigned to Maryknoll’s mission in Wuchow, South China. In December of 1941 he was interned by the Japanese in the Fort Stanley Internment Camp for nine months. Upon his release, he made his way inland to Wuchow and was assigned to the Se Wong mission. He remained there until the Japanese army took the town and he moved out with U.S. Air Corps personnel. He served as a chaplain with the Air Force until the war ended and then he returned to Hong Kong where there were a lot of Chinese refugees. Father told stories of how they used the Catholic Relief Services wheat supplies to make noodles for the starving Chinese. In the fall of 1945, he returned to his Se Wong mission and remained there before returning home for a furlough in 1949. He was appointed pastor of St. Theresa’s Chinese Mission in Chicago and served there until 1956, when he returned to China, this time to Hong Kong.

Father McKeirnan resumed parish work from 1956 until 1960, when he was appointed Maryknoll’s Regional Vicar to supervise Maryknoll’s mission works in Hong Kong, and also serve as Director of Maryknoll’s Stanley House. At the end of his term in 1966, he was appointed pastor of St. Peter’s Parish in Kowloontsai. In 1968, he received his next assignment, namely Director of the Bishop Ford Center in Kowloon, where he lived and worked until January 2005. There were very few local inhabitants who knew as much as Father McKeirnan about the history and culture of the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong. A trip through the Colony with him as guide was an education and a joy. His range of stories was endless and all could see the enjoyment and pleasure he expressed. Father McKeirnan’s knowledge and understanding of the Chinese people have been his greatest assets, and his greatest happiness was in instructing adults and seeing the marvelous change that the love of God makes in them. Father McKeirnan returned to the United States in January 2005, taking up residence at Mission St. Teresa’s.

Wake services were held at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, September 27, 2009 at St. Teresa’s, with Father John J. Casey officiating, and at 7:30 p.m. in Queen of Apostles Chapel at Maryknoll Center where Father Raymond F. Sullivan officiated and Father I. Edward Szendrey read the biography. Mass of Christian Burial was concelebrated in Queen of Apostles Chapel on Monday, September 28, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. Father Raymond J. Nobiletti was Principal Celebrant and homilist. Burial took place at Holy Rosary Cemetery in Pomeroy, Washington, at his family plot.

Kathleen E. (Murray) McKeirnan

Kathleen E. McKeirnan passed away Sunday, Sept. 20, 2009, in Pomeroy.

obit photo of Kathleen McKeirnan, Pomeroy

Kathleen was born in Cork, Ireland, to Laurence and Mary Murray. In 1947, she immigrated to Walla Walla to live with her aunt and uncle, Fred and Peg Fischbach.

She married Joseph P. McKeirnan Sept. 24, 1955.

Kathleen was a lifelong homemaker and devoted mother. Nothing was more important to her than her family. She was especially proud of her children and grandchildren.

She loved Irish step dancing, singing/reciting poems, storytelling, music, baking bread, gardening, walking and entertaining her many friends.

She was a very active member of Holy Rosary Parish and altar society. She loved serving the community and cherished the special friendships that volunteer service brought her.

Kathleen is survived by and will be forever loved and remembered by her husband of 54 years, Joseph P. McKeirnan. Their companionship, devotion and mutual care-giving were an inspiration to everyone. Kathleen is also survived by daughter, Eileen and husband Mark Koth of Spokane; son, Michael and wife Lisa McKeirnan of Walla Walla; and daughter, Angela and husband Matt Collins of Bellevue, Wash.; three sisters, Eileen Loranger, Peggy Murray and Philly Murph; 11 grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Kathleen enjoyed life with her wonderful personality, goodness and strong faith. She was a consistent source of strength, kindness, wisdom, and love for her family and friends. She will be remembered for her unwavering positive outlook on life, her quick wit and stories from "home" that were always accompanied by a cup of tea. Kathleen will forever be in the hearts and memories of all who knew her.

The rosary for Kathleen was recited at Holy Rosary Church in Pomeroy, followed the next morning by Mass of Christian burial.

Wilma L. (Gimlin) Koller

Wilma L. Koller, of Spokane, died Friday, Aug. 7, 2009, at the Idaho State Veterans Home in Lewiston, from causes related to chronic respiratory illness.

Wilma was born Nov. 4, 1927, to Lee F. and Ella A. Crawford Gimlin, at Spokane. She attended schools in Pomeroy, graduating from Pomeroy High School in 1945. She then attended Washington State University. Wilma married Lester R. Koller on May 4, 1946, at Pomeroy.

Wilma was a bookkeeper for Lester's milk distributorship, a licensed agent for the Washington State Liquor Control Board and worked in a book exchange store. She lived in Pomeroy from 1927 to 1990, when she moved to Spokane.

Wilma was a longtime member of the Pomeroy Golf Club and was extremely active in the Camp Fire USA organization, receiving the Luther Halsey Guilick Award for her years served and outstanding service. She was very creative and artistic with sewing, crafts and just about anything else. She loved to read and work crossword puzzles and especially enjoyed getting away to the cabin at Rose Spring.

Wilma is survived by her husband, Lester R. Koller of Clarkston; son Richard L. Koller Sr. and wife Jeanette of Spokane; daughters Sandra L. and Dave Brunstetter of Bellevue, Wash., and Kerri K. and Ed Ledgerwood of Scottsdale, Ariz.; son Donald J. and Stephanie Koller of Auburn Hills, Mich.; three granddaughters; six grandsons; and six great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Lee F. and Ella A. Gimlin; and a granddaughter, Crystal K. Geer.

A memorial service will be at 2 p.m. today at Richardson-Brown Funeral Home in Pomeroy. Frank Musgrave of the Pomeroy Christian Church will officiate.

The family suggests memorial donations be made to the Idaho State Veterans Home.

Jack Vernon Fischer

Jack Vernon Fischer went to be with the Lord on Saturday, May 2, 2009.

Jack Fischer obit photo

Jack was born in Massillon, Ohio, on Dec. 30, 1931, the second of six children, to Jack and Hazel Fischer. The family moved to Clarkston, where he graduated from Clarkston High School in 1949. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1950 and served four years during the Korean War era as damage control specialist on the USS Merrick.

After his return from the Navy in 1954, Jack and his brother Dave started a restaurant/service station business in Pomeroy, where he met his wife, Shirley. It was a busy year in 1957 - he graduated from Lewis-Clark State College, entered his banking career with National Bank of Commerce, and married Shirley Henriksen.

In 1971 he became the assistant vice president/branch manager of Kennewick's NB of C, where he started his banking career. In 1976 he was promoted to vice president and senior credit officer for the Spokane regional office, and in 1982 he was promoted to the senior credit office. For eight years he commuted to Rainier Tower in Seattle from Edmonds. After 34 years, Jack retired in 1991 as a senior vice president of Security Pacific Bank. His career is distinguished by graduating from Pacific School of Banking, his knowledge of eastern Washington farm credit and as the chief credit officer of Washington state.

Jack was very active in various service organizations and always invested his abilities back into the communities where he lived. He credited his leadership skills to his service in the Navy and being involved in the Jaycee organization. His volunteer highlights include: president, Tri-City Chamber of Commerce; director, Tri-City Nuclear-Industrial Council; and president-director, Mid-Columbia Girl Scouts. Upon retirement, he became very active as treasurer and commissioner of the Williams Lake Sewer District; and district chair for the Spokane Chapter of S.C.O.R.E. (Service Corps of Retired Executives). Jack was also actively involved in each church community where he lived.

Highlights for Jack included beating the Cuban boxing champion while in the Navy; attending any activity his kids or grandchild were involved in; shaking President Bush's hand after he walked off Air Force One at Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane; and gardening and boating at their home at Williams Lake, near Cheney.

He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Shirley L. Fischer; son Kevin Fischer; son Kelly Fischer and Susan Chon; daughter Heidi and Dean Christofilos; grandson Alex Christofilos; "adopted" granddaughters Rachel and Danielle Sheridan; brother Robert and Shirley Fischer; sister Janice Sorweide; and many nephews and nieces.

A memorial service was held at Fourth Memorial Church, Spokane, officiated by the Rev. Jerry Malone. A reception will follow.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Building Fund of Cheney Community Church, 1307 Third St., Cheney, WA 99004; or the Physical Therapy Department of Spokane Veterans Home, 222 E. Fifth Ave., Spokane, WA 99202.

Floyd "Mose" Junior Carr

Floyd 'Mose' Junior Carr, 83, passed away peacefully in his sleep March 3, 2009, in Salton Sea, CA, with his brother, Don, and friend, Marvin LaRue, by his side. He was born February 13, 1926, in Chico, CA to Floyd and Alice Carr.

Floyd (Mose) Junior Carr Obituary photo

Floyd grew up living at the Spanish Castle by Malaga, Washington, and attended Wenatchee High School. He joined the U.S. Army and served during the Cold War, being stationed in Germany. Floyd also joined the Merchant Marines and was aboard a health ship that traveled to Alaska, offering medical care to the native Eskimos. While in Alaska, he flew as a bush pilot. When he returned from Alaska, he was a crop duster pilot, later owning his own helicopter and plane company, known as Snake River Helicopter and Spray Service, in Pomeroy.

In November of 1973, Floyd saved William G. Loomis from dying of exposure during a hunting trip in the Blue Mountains. Floyd flew in his helicopter, leading a search party to find Mr. Loomis and was awarded the Carnegie Hero Award from the capital in Washington D.C. for his brave and unselfish act.

Floyd was preceded in death by his brother-in-law, Lloyd Harden; and nephew, Gary Harden. They had worked together in the aviation industry. Floyd is survived by his sister, Roberta Carr-Harden; brother, Don Carr; sons, Mike 'Dick', Dan, and Dave Carr; daughter, Linnette Carr; and nieces, Sandy and Vicky Harden.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held Saturday, March 21, 2009, at the Garfield County Fairgrounds in Pomeroy, WA. The Veteran's Association is in charge of the services.

Eva Waldher

Eva Waldher, 1908-2009, Pomeroy Washington

Eva Christine Waldher, a native of Pomeroy, died Tuesday, March 3, 2009, at Tri-State Memorial Hospital in Clarkston.

She was born Feb. 2, 1908, to Herman and Mary Ogden Baden, in a farmhouse south of Pomeroy near the Tucannon District. She attended Skyhawk country school and graduated from Pomeroy High School in 1927.

She married Herman Waldher in 1927, in Pomeroy, and they farmed many years near Pomeroy. Herman later worked at the Waldher Carpenter Shop while she worked at Brown's Drug Store for nearly 30 years.

After retirement, they enjoyed traveling, riding their snowsleds from their cabin at Stentz Springs in the Blue Mountains, and fishing at Chapman Lake near Spokane, where they had a travel trailer permanently located.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Herman, and grandson Terry.

She is survived by her son, Harold and his wife Florine; a granddaughter-in-law, June Kralman Waldher; granddaughters Debbie and Clay Cheek, Michelle Swensen and Inez West; eight great-grandchildren and 10 great-great-grandchildren.

Funeral arrangements are provided by Richardson-Brown Funeral Home in Pomeroy. A rosary was recited on March 6, and a funeral Mass was celebrated the following day, both at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Pomeroy. Father Bob Turner officiated.

Memorials may be sent to Morning Star Boy's Ranch, P.O. Box 8087, Spokane, WA 99203-0087; or to Memory Manor Nursing Home, Pomeroy, WA 99347.

Sylvia (MacDonald) Warren

Sylvia Frances Warren went home to be with the Lord on Saturday, Feb. 21, 2009. She was born December 23, 1914, to Robert and Clara MacDonald in Port Hill, Idaho.

Sylvia Warren, Pomeroy WA, 1914-2009

She lived in, and enjoyed, Memory Manor in Pomeroy for the past three years. Previously she lived at Evergreen Estates in Clarkston for a short time but was a longtime resident of Pomeroy. She and her husband Stanley farmed south of Pomeroy (where her son Stan and grandson Justin still farm). Stanley and Sylvia moved into a house they renovated in Pomeroy in 1977. They remained active in many community organizations, including the Nazarene Church, Odd Fellows and Rebekahs, Veterans of Foreign Wars Women's Auxiliary and Pleasant Grove Grange.

She was the beloved mother of six children and spent most of her life tending to the needs of a farm family. She worked on the farm, tending header on the old combine in earlier years and then went on to driving truck later. She also was instrumental in remodeling two large houses and converting them to four-unit apartment buildings. She managed them for many years. She loved having guests and preparing big meals. She worked hard to keep the flower gardens and especially her rose garden beautiful.

She was preceded in death by her husband Stanley and her son Willis.

She is survived by her sons and their wives, Howard and Irene, Stan and Karen, and Sam and Diana; also by daughters and their husbands, Carmelita and Dave, and Kandis and Allen. She had 25 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.

Services were held on Thursday, February 26, at the Nazarene Church in Pomeroy, with a reception afterward.

Memorials can be given to the Nazarene Church (135 9th Street, Pomeroy WA 99347) to Memory Manor (c/o Garfield County Hospital, 66 N 6th Street, Pomeroy WA 99347) or another of your choice.