Clayton “Buck” Steele, 68, died Jan. 16, 2007, at his home in Halfway after a recent diagnosis of pancreatic cancer.
His memorial service will be at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Halfway Kingdom Hall. Friends are invited to join the family for a reception afterward at the Halfway Lions Hall.
Buck was born in 1938 at Laona, Wis., to Bert and Louise Thurber Steele. The family moved to western Washington where he grew up.
He was a 1957 graduate of Snohomish High School. It was there that he married “the girl next door,” Rose Servine, in 1961. Their three children, Julie, Brett, and Lisa, were born at Everett, Wash. In 1973, the family moved to Halfway.
To care for his family, Buck wore many hats. In Everett, he worked for Scott Paper Co., sorting logs and operating a tugboat on the waterfront, and logging. In Halfway, he continued logging, becoming adept at navigating the numerous forest roads.
When logging declined, he took up mining at the Iron Dyke Mine in Homestead during the gold boom of the 1980s. His true joy was in raising beef cattle, calling each one by name.
For many years, Buck maintained forest fence for Pine Valley and Gulick Ranches. His favorite spot was where the fence ended on top of Sugarloaf Mountain, where he enjoyed a view of the pristine country he loved. He described his fencing job as a “good day at the office.” The highlight of any summer was joining family or friends on pack trips with horses and mules, and in some circles, Buck was known to be an excellent camp cook.
Above all, Buck was a spiritual man, having a love for God and neighbor. As one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, he enjoyed sharing his Bible-based hope of a future earth-wide paradise. He was a person on whom friends and neighbors could always call.
The family expressed appreciation for the outpouring of care and concern by the community and friends near and far.
Survivors include his wife, Rose; three children, Julie Steele, Brett and Lisa Steele and Lisa and Kirk Kundrick; two grandchildren, Aaron Steele and Brynne Kundrick; sisters, Faye and Anita, and a brother, Bert, and their families; and extended family and many dear friends.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, January 22, 2007
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor