Baker City, Baker County, Oregon
Joseph Henry “Joe” Bernard, 87, a longtime resident of Baker City, died Sept. 5, 2005 at St. Elizabeth Care Center.
An open house and celebration of life will be held at the Baker Elks Lodge on Friday, Oct. 14, at 1 p.m.
Joe Bernard was born May 27, 1918, in Richland to August (Gus) Adolph Bernard and Mary Edna Buckley. He lived on his father’s homestead on Deer Gulch on Lookout Mountain near Richland until he was 5 years old. He attended school until the sixth grade in Tooele, Utah, before moving to Baker in 1932.
Joe joined the Civilian Conservation Corps program in Baker in 1935, working on the Anthony Lake and Rock Creek roads. He married Marjorie (Marge) Child on Jan. 15, 1938.
Joe and Marge moved throughout the western United States as they followed construction and mining work during the war years. They had lived in Baker since 1945. He worked as an auto mechanic in Baker until his retirement in 1980. Joe and Marge also built five houses in Baker.
Joe and Marge loved the outdoors and camped, hunted and fished in the mountains and streams of Eastern Oregon. Joe built his own snowcat from automobile parts in 1962. He bought his first snowmobile in 1966 and Joe and Marge became avid snowmobile riders. They built a cabin in Greenhorn and spent nearly half of their time living there during their retirement years. Joe claimed to have ridden a snowmobile over 60,000 miles and rode into Greenhorn last winter at age 86.
Joe was a charter member of the Baker Snowmobile Club, a lifetime member of the Sumpter Valley Snowmobile Club and a life member of the Baker Elks Lodge.
Joe is survived by his daughter Nadine Collett of Tigard, and her husband, Frank; son Les and his wife, Kathie, of Las Vegas, Nev.; four grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren
He was preceded in death by his wife of 65 years, Marge, parents Gus and Mary, brother Jack, half brothers Veith and Neil, half sister Dorothy and two grandchildren.
Contributions can be made to the Baker Elks through Gray’s West & Co.,P.O. Box 726, Baker City, OR 97814.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, September 30, 2005
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor