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Gene F. Ego, 84, of Halfway and a former Baker City resident, died April 25, 2003, at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Portland.
At his request, disposition will be by cremation at Gray’s West Pioneer Crematory and there will be no service.
Gene was born Oct. 11, 1918, to C.B. and Bessie S. (Doolittle) Ego at Cove. His family moved to Baker City when he was 5. Gene attended school at a one-room school-house on Sutton Creek, just south of Baker City. He worked for different ranches in the area during this time.
After leaving school in 1938, he went to work for the Oregon Lumber Co. where he remained until he was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1942. He was sworn in at Fort Lewis, Wash., on Feb. 18, 1942, and moved to Fort Leonardwood, Mo., where he received engineer training.
He then was relocated for heavy equipment school, eventually joining the 120th Engineer Battalion Headquarters Co. Gene later ended up at Pine Camp, N.Y., where he had to dig tunnels through 13 feet of snow just to get to the street.
Along with his engineering duties, he also served as a chauffeur for some generals of the time, one of which was General Patton. Other places he was stationed included Virginia, North Africa, Sicily, Italy and Southern France. He was honorably discharged on Sept. 18, 1945, when he returned to the states.
After his discharge from the military, Gene continued to live in Baker City for several more years. He then moved to John Day, where he went to work in various sawmills. After moving to John Day, Gene married Dorothy Masterson on Aug. 29, 1952, at Boise.
Gene later took a job with the U.S. Forest Service, working primarily in the Malheur National Forest. The couple then moved to Medford where Gene worked for the Bureau of Land Management until his retirement in 1985.
He and Dorothy moved to Halfway in 1989 to enjoy their retirement. Gene enjoyed fishing, hunting, camping and rock collecting. He was a life member of the American Legion, Post 41, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 3048. He was also a former member of the Powder River Good Sam Club.
Survivors include his wife of 51 years, Dorothy Ego of Halfway; one daughter, Erna Kay Williams, and her husband, Eric, of Troutdale; one grandson, James Paul Thompson of Troutdale; one sister, Adealia Veristain, and her husband, Mark, of Ontario; two brothers, William Ego and his wife, Flora, of Payette, Idaho, and Howard Ego of Vale; many cousins, numerous nieces and one nephew.
He was preceded in death by his parents, one sister and three brothers.
Memorial contributions may be made to the American Legion, Post 41, or the V.F.W., Post 3048, through Gray’s West & Co., P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, May 2, 2003
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor