La Grande, Oregon
Thomas D. Fennell, 69, of Sutherlin and formerly of La Grande, died June 11. A memorial service is planned for June 28 in Sutherlin. Chapel of the Roses in Roseburg is in charge of arrangements.
Thomas was born June 11, 1939, to Grady and Lorene (Priest) Fennell in Monticello, Ark. In 1947, the Fennell family moved to the Sutherlin area.
Thomas graduated from Sutherlin High School in 1957, and enlisted in the Army 87th Airborne unit. He was stationed in Germany and while serving his country enjoyed parachute jumping. After completing his military service, he became a member of the Oregon State Police and lived and worked in La Grande.
Thomas returned to Sutherlin and began an excavating business. In the mid-1980s, he bought and developed a business running a service station and store in Evanston, Wyo. In the early 1990s, Thomas retired to Sutherlin and took up his favorite past-times: hunting, fishing and reading the Bible. In the last few years, ill-health curtailed his outdoor activities and limited his excursions.
On Dec. 8, 2007, Thomas married Sharon Bjerkbig Hollamon.
Thomas is survived by his wife, Sharon Fennell of Sutherlin; daughter, Tammra and her husband, Jack Chess, of La Grande; sister, JoAnn and her husband, Leland Nelson of Bandon; brother, Jack and his wife, Wendy Fennell, of Sutherlin; brother, Troy Fennell of Roseburg; step-children, Doug Hollamon of Anchorage, Alaska, Monty Hollamon and Sheila Hollamon of Sutherlin; and numerous grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
La Grande Observer – June 19, 2008