William “Bill” David Jackson, 57, of Prairie City, Ore., passed away April 8, 2008, in Richland, Wash. A graveside service was held 1 p.m., Monday, April 14, at the Prairie City Cemetery.
Bill was born Sept. 27, 1950, in Baker City, Ore. to David M. and Elaine (Spiropolas) Jackson. He graduated from Baker High School in 1969 and achieved a BS from Eastern Oregon University in 1974. He also received a Masters. On October 24, 1981, Bill married Cynthia Beck in Portland, Ore. The couple had two sons, Kyle and Jason.
Bill loved the out of doors and was an avid hunter and fisherman. He recently enjoyed a whitetail hunt in Canada and bagged a nice buck. He was looking forward to more trips and was considering an elk trip for the Fall as well as a trip to South Dakota pheasant hunting.
He enjoyed watching kids playing sports of all kinds. You would often see him at football, basketball and baseball games whether his kids were playing or not. Supporting the youth of the community was something he always did. If a kid had some raffle tickets or was selling anything, they would always find a buyer in Bill. If someone needed a hand, he was always there to lend his support. Bill was a big sponsor of 4-H and FFA buying animals at the livestock auction and going to FFA auctions he would always find something to buy to help support the kids.
Bill became active in Little League when his sons were playing ball and continued in Little League even after the boys were older. He was a coach and then became the Grant County Little League President for two years. He then became the Vice-President of District 3 Little League, a position he was active in until his passing. Bill loved watching the games and doing what he could to support Little League and the Kids.
In the late 80′s Bill became one of the main folks working to help get the William R. Young Memorial Prairie City Ranger District Employees Scholarship started. Knowing it was going to benefit kids for years to come, long after those who started the scholarship moved on, meant a lot to Bill.
He was involved in the Youth Pheasant Hunt and raised pheasants at his home for the event. Kids who might not have gotten a bird knew they could come out to the house and they would be able to bag one.
In the late 70′s and 80′s, Bill was a volunteer fireman for the Canyon City Fire Department. After moving to Prairie City, he started driving the ambulance for the City, later becoming certified as an EMT and was one for several years, using his free time to help support the community.
Bill worked for the Forest Service for 33 years retiring in August of 2007. Recently he commented on how lucky he was to have a job he enjoyed where he could be working outdoors. He was a Sales Administrator for most of those years, and enjoyed working with the logging community. Bill was also involved in an overhead team working on fires. He continued in this position after retirement and enjoyed his work on the team.
Bill gave selflessly to the community giving both monetary support and of his own time. He felt strongly that supporting the youth of the community was very important and he didn’t hesitate to help out in any way that he could….He will be sorely missed.
He is survived by his wife Cynthia of Prairie City, and his sons, Kyle of Hanksville, Utah, and Jason of Prairie City. He was preceded in death by his parents Dave and Elaine Jackson.
Memorial contributions in Bill’s memory may be made to the Grant Co. Little League or the William R. Young PCRD Employer Scholarship Fund through Driskill Memorial Chapel, 241 S. Canyon Blvd., John Day, OR 97845.
Used with permission from: The Record Courier, Baker City, Oregon, April 17, 2008
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor