Teresa Ann Lewis Vaughan began her next great journey on Sunday, Aug. 5, 2007, surrounded by family and friends.
Teresa was born July 2, 1955, in Ontario, Ore., to Keith and Fern Lewis. She lived in Ontario until the summer of her 17th year when her father’s promotion with the Oregon State police moved the family to Baker City. Teresa always had a great love for animals. She learned to ride horses at a young age and became a skilled horseman and rodeo competitor. Her specialty was barrel racing. She eventually went on to be crowned Miss Oregon High School Rodeo Queen and competed in National Finals in cow cutting and barrel racing in Utah and Colorado. She continued as a member of the Blue Mountain Rodeo Team while attending Blue Mountain Community College.
Teresa enjoyed hard work. She worked for Albertsons Bakery while attending college. After college she worked for the Grizzly Bear Commissary before finding her life long career, 30 plus years, as a legal assistant at the law firm of Banta, Silven, and Young. In 1980 Teresa met a young lawyer, a gentle giant of a man who stole her heart and became the love of her life. Despite the daunting prospect of joining the Vaughan clan, including Floyd, Kathy and their 10 children, Teresa threw caution to the wind and accepted Charlie’s proposal. They were married Sept. 26, 1981, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Durkee. The reception, which followed at the Durkee Grange (formerly the Durkee grade school and gym attended by Charlie), was greatly enhanced by several bouquets Teresa and her maid of honor and dear friend Jane Bohn Sackos, ‘borrowed’ from several unsuspecting contributors.
Floyd Samuel Lewis Vaughan’s birth on Sept. 3, 1985, made it a true Labor Day. Sam was eight weeks premature, weighing in at 2 pounds, 11 ounces. He spent his first two months at OHSU’s neo-natal unit. As soon as Teresa could be at his side, she never left it. A scenario that would be repeated 15 years later when she again nursed him back to perfect health after his diagnosis of lymphoma. Sam’s robust health and personality are among her greatest triumphs.
Equally joyous were the births of Kaitlin Elizabeth in 1988 and Keith Patrick Alexander Vaughan in 1991 and their many accomplishments. Family meant everything to Teresa. She was a devoted parent and partner. She still found time to serve the community and church in many capacities, including as a board member and officer for Baker City YMCA, Baker Little League, South Baker PTO, Team Parent for all three children’s many activities, Clark Foundation, and St. Francis Parish Finance Committee.
Teresa had many interests and talents. She was a great organizer of closets, shopping trips, weekend get-a-ways, family vacations and fabulous dinners – be it elegant special occasions or feeding hungry coaches and players. She enjoyed gourmet cooking and had an innate sense of design and style. There were never enough flowers to plant or recipes to try. She combined her natural talent for color and design and her love of meeting new people with the experience of her mother Fern Taylor in jointly establishing the successful business known as CoverWorks.
Teresa was a positive person who remained open to new ideas, respected ideas and opinions different than her own, and taught this to her husband and children. She convinced her skeptical family to experience new places and different people, both with activities outside their daily comfort zones and on trips far outside their usual time zones. Her family will always be eternally grateful for her determination to not only get herself, but also her family to Paris, France, Graz, Austria, and all across Italy.
Teresa truly believed that wealth is not measured by what you have, but rather by who you have beside you. In her case, it was countless friends, her children’s friends, clients, customers, faithful pets (Mickey, Gus, Sophie and Pete, to name a few), and her entire loving family.
Teresa’s Family includes: husband Charlie, and children, Sam, Kate, and Pat Vaughan; mother, Fern Taylor and her husband, Bob; father, Keith Lewis and his wife, Sharon; her great aunt Marge Burgess; uncle Bill Lewis and wife, Pat, uncle Walt Gordon and wife Cleo, Uncle Pete Dunn; ‘sisters,’ Kim Cutsforth, Kathy Fulmer, Kathleen Eckrich, Laurie Carnahan, Margie Walter, Reagan Vaughan, Heather Vaughan, Joan Vaughan; lifelong friend and accomplice, Rhonda Scattinni; brothers-in-law, Tom Vaughan, Joe Vaughan (deceased), James Vaughan, Mark Eckrich, Mike Carnahan, William Walter, Ed Fulmer; other in-laws, Steve Stevenson and Zoe Leach; the Dunn family; the Heriza family; the Lewis family; the Gordon family, the Pifher family and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A vigil was held 7 p.m. ,Thursday, Aug. 9, at St. Francis DeSales Cathedral in Baker City and a Memorial Mass was held 10 a.m., Friday, Aug. 10 also at St. Francis DeSales Cathedral. Interment will take place at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Baker City.
In lieu of flowers the family prefers those wanting to remember Teresa to make a donation to her favorite organizations: Baker Family YMCA, St. Francis Church Renovation Project, or Susan G. Komen Race For The Cure. All contributions may be directed in care of Coles Funeral Home, 1950 Place Street, Baker City, OR 97814.
Used with permission from: The Record Courier, Baker City, Oregon, August 16, 2007
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor