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Remembering a Great Man, Alan EhryTim King Salem-News.com
Even the honey bees will miss their longtime friend, Alan Ehry.
(DUNDEE, OR) - Oregon said goodbye to a longtime bee keeper and auctioneer who our Publisher Bonnie King called Dad.
Alan Ehry, my father-in-law, died in a tractor accident on his property. The man was incredible, he was larger than life and faithful to his values to the core. He loved many but was loved by more.
He loved Oregon, he loved his family property, where for so many years he ran bees all over the western half of this nation, never fearful, always curious, and jovial as any man who ever lived.
He was always the life of the party. Alan had these funny ways of saying things and he loved to tell jokes and share funny stories and make people laugh. He was also a mechanical genius, like my dad, who he thought a great deal of. It is hard to imagine that they are both gone now, completely unimaginable.
Alan recently had major surgery, his prostate was removed, and that procedure had renewed him once again. Bonnie, his second eldest daughter, was just telling me how he was so full of energy and bounding around like a kid, that was Alan.
He was taken by things that others missed, he loved details, he could tell you the most minute details about mechanical items, and in his lifetime he created many useful machines and products. I'll never forget his forklift, it was a WWII military jeep that was sort of cut in half and facing backward, with a fork lift attached to it, and it worked super well.
I remember his Mercedes Benz phase, Alan loved to buy cars and vans and work on them and fix them up. He knew cars like very few people, and he could work on anything.
Alan and his wife Marjie have dedicated their lives to taking care of their family members, their children and grandchildren and great grandchildren all have been able to return to their old Victorian house from the turn of the 20th Century, that sits on dozens of lush Oregon farmland.
That place was his life, Alan was a happy man and he found ways to always keep learning new things, developing ideas, he had a mind that never quit.
Alan was a U.S. Navy Veteran and part of a group known as the 'Blue Water Navy' which was largely tied to the run up to the war in Vietnam. Alan was honorably discharged before the military action began, fortunately. His son Chris followed his father's footsteps, also serving in the U.S. Navy.
Alan played the guitar and when he was in high school in the late 1950's, he wore his hair in a ducktail, was in a rock and roll band, and received a bit of hassle for being a somewhat rebellious youth. He lived in an interesting time and had a full lifetime of experiences.
Alan was very supportive on a personal level when I went to cover the war in Afghanistan and he always was interested in our media projects and adventures.
Alan was a beekeeper, an auctioneer, a father, grandfather, brother, and great-grandfather... and believe me the list keeps going. People loved him. He never lost his enthusiasm for life and lived it to the fullest in his own unique way.
He will be wildly missed but I think people will learn to accept and adjust and we will always smile when we think of the tender love that he never failed to show, he loved his family and was a man's man but he loved babies and he loved his daughters Margie, Bonnie and Peggy and his son Chris who personifies so many of his dad's good qualities.
Things were not meant to be this way but they are now and it is very sad, but we will not let it take us apart, we will live with wonderful memories of him and I know from the loss of both of my parents, that time really does allow one to refocus away from the pain.
As for services, the immediate family is making these decisions right now and I can say that the service will not be held for several days, it isn't written in stone but it looks like it will be a week from Saturday. Those who are wondering can write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will pass along any updates. Please remember that this information is tentative and more will follow. I know that Bonnie and her family will have an obituary published in local papers and we will certainly publish more about Alan and his incredible life.
Celebration of life is Saturday, Feb 9, 2013 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Church on the Hill, 700 N. Hill Road, McMinnville, Ore. All are welcome. Reception to follow.
Attrell's of Newberg handled arrangements. Private burial of his remains will take place at a later date.
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