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About East Oregonian : E.O. (Pendleton, OR) 1888-current | View Entire Issue (Nov. 21, 2017)
Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Holiday events spread cheer
By JADE MCDOWELL
Staff photo by Kathy Aney
Wade Waterland, 7, chats with Santa about his Christmas wish list
Saturday during the Altrusa Annual Holiday Bazaar at the Pendleton
children running around didn’t sneak too
many slices, said they expected about
70 people on Saturday. She attends the
“close-knit” Echo Community Church
and said she likes helping out with their
John Marcum, the church’s pastor,
said as Echo’s only active church, they
try to serve the community as much as
possible. It helps that the mayor and
several city councilors are congregants
and were serving up food in the hot line
“We’re trying to do good things,” he
Linda Nelson enjoyed the meal,
particularly the sweet potatoes and
mashed potatoes with turkey gravy.
“They always have such good
Thanksgiving dinners,” she said.
Over in Pendleton, Umatilla County’s
biggest holiday bazaar of the year was in
full swing in the afternoon.
The Altrusa Holiday Bazaar at the
Pendleton Convention Center drew
more than 100 vendors and hundreds
of shoppers looking to get an early start
on their Christmas shopping or just buy
something fun for themselves. On offer
was clothing, home decor, soaps, jams,
baked goods and jewelry.
Chris Ramsey of Custom Carved
Signs in Hermiston had a booth for the
first time after starting a business this
year, honoring his roots as a third-gener-
ation wood craftsman.
“I’m glad I came,” he said. “I had
no idea it was this big or I would have
come years before, not as a carver but as
He said it was a fun “ego boost” to
see how many people were stopping by
to watch him carve his signs and ask
questions about the process.
Pam Campbell of PJ’s Funny Farm
outside Adams was selling products that
were all raised on her ranch, from alpaca
fleece to goat’s milk soaps and lotions.
“This is my fourth or fifth year,” she
said. “It’s fun. If I break even, that’s
great, if I sell a lot, that’s icing on the
cake. With all these critters I’ve got to do
something with all these products.”
Jill Pursel had paused her shopping
for a piece of berry pie, and said attending
Altrusa’s holiday bazaar has been a
tradition for years. She had her eye on a
few things she planned to purchase, but
she said since she moved from Pendleton
to Hermiston the event has also become
an excuse to reconnect with people she
doesn’t see regularly anymore.
“I really like coming here and seeing
all the people,” she said.
Councilor’s mother killed by impaired driver
By JADE MCDOWELL
The fight against drunk
driving has new meaning
for Hermiston city councilor
John Kirwan after his mother
was killed by an impaired
driver just over a week ago.
The call came shortly
before 6 p.m. on Nov. 10.
Kirwan’s sister told him their
mother, Paulette Kirwan,
66, had been involved in a
serious crash on Highway 97
outside Klamath Falls, where
she lives. Less than half an
hour later the Oregon State
Police notified the family that
Paulette had died at the scene.
“You just don’t think
you’re going to get that call,”
According to news station
KDRV, the Oregon State
Police reported that Austin
Haynes, 22, of Chiloquin was
traveling southbound in a
Dodge Ram pickup when he
crossed into the northbound
lane and into a blue 1996
Ford Aerostar van driven
by Melquiades Ibarra, 57,
whom the family described
in Paulette’s obituary as her
“soulmate” and “longtime
Defense asserts Fix not
competent to stand trial
A mix of Thanksgiving and Christmas
events helped get everyone in the holiday
spirit last weekend.
At Hermiston Public Library on
Saturday morning, children sat at
tables with small “Christmas bell” tree
ornaments made from plastic cups,
studiously sticking Santa, snowman and
penguin stickers to their crafts.
Guadalupe Thomas said she brings
her children Aviana Thomas, 6, Ana
Ramirez, 10, and Jerasiah Thomas, 3, to
the library “a lot” to participate in crafts,
reading activities or just to browse the
“It’s really nice the library puts on so
many fun things for kids,” she said.
The children said they were excited
for Christmas and they were having a
good time making ornaments.
“It’s fun and then we get to keep them
and put them on our tree,” Ana said.
Dena Hill said she brought her
daughters Genelle and Jacenda to make
ornaments because they loved to do
crafts. She has been trying to bring them
to the library more often lately.
“It’s family-friendly,” she said.
Some places may have been jumping
straight into Christmas events, but at
Echo Community Methodist Church at
noon it was all about Thanksgiving.
Young families, elderly couples and
single people all mingled in the base-
ment of the church for Echo’s annual
community Thanksgiving meal.
Women and children were allowed to
go first after a volunteer said an opening
prayer, but Daniel “Buster” McClinton,
who has lived in Echo for 13 years, was
in line shortly behind them with a cookie
sheet, ready to use it as a make-shift tray
to deliver plates of turkey and stuffing
to those who were in a wheelchair and
would have difficultly navigating the
McClinton said as “the only black
person in Echo” he felt he should get
to know everyone in the community,
so he volunteers around town and helps
elderly residents with things like getting
wood for their wood stoves. He said he
enjoys the community meal each year.
“Even people who don’t go to this
church seem to show up,” he said. “This
is the gathering.”
Patsy Gehrke, who was keeping an
eye on the pie table to make sure the
Photo contributed by John Kirwan
Paulette Kirwan was killed in a crash Nov. 10.
partner in life.”
Haynes was not injured
and Ibarra sustained some
injuries, but Paulette, riding
in the front seat of the van,
was killed. According to the
news station, Haynes showed
“signs of impairment” and
was lodged in the Klamath
County Jail for manslaughter,
third-degree assault and
driving while under the influ-
ence of intoxicants.
John said his family,
including two brothers, two
sisters, Paulette’s grandchil-
dren, her twin sister and other
members of a large family,
were all “taking it pretty
rough,” as were his mother’s
co-workers and friends.
“All of these people were
affected permanently by
someone’s decision to get
behind the wheel and drive,”
Paulette worked for
Klamath and Lake Commu-
nity Action Services, helping
the area’s struggling residents
with things like getting their
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heating bill paid. John said
she was a loving, generous
person who “would bend over
backwards to help anybody.”
The family can’t have a
funeral until Dec. 2 because
they have to wait for an
autopsy that will aid in the
criminal investigation into
her death. John said it was
difficult on the family to not
have closure right away.
They’ve also spent time
thinking about the conse-
quences of impaired driving.
“People think, I have
no way home, I can’t leave
my car here, I can’t call
someone,” John said, “but I
would urge anyone who has
had too much to drink to find
another way home.”
Angela Marie Fix of
Pilot Rock needs more
time and help before she
can stand trial for arson and
morning via video
from the Umatilla
County Jail in the
room of Circuit
pher Brauer for Fix
an update on her
case. The state accused Fix
of setting the fire that killed
Larry Castro, 77, in July at
his Pilot Rock home.
Attorney Jill Weygandt
handled the defense duties.
She told Brauer that
clinical psychologist Terry
Templeman found Fix was
not competent to stand trial.
Reading from Templeman’s
report, Weygandt said Fix
could not make relevant
decisions or sort through
relevant information on her
District Attorney Dan
Primus said he would
review the report and
anticipated sending Fix to
the state’s mental hospital
in Salem for an evaluation.
Brauer set the status
check on the case for the
morning of Dec. 13.
And the court agreed
to delay the sexual assault
trial of Jeffrey Pierce, 40, of
Pierce has pleaded not
guilty to four counts of
21 counts of first-degree
sodomy and 25
accused Pierce of
abusing one girl
starting in 2008
when she was
younger than 12
court documents. The
crimes are felonies under
Oregon’s Measure 11 and
carry mandatory minimum
sentences upon conviction.
Jessica’s Law, which
enhances prison sentences,
applies to multiple counts
because the victim was
younger than 12.
The case was to go to
trial Monday in Pendleton,
Thomas Gray on Friday
filed a motion asking the
court to reset the trial date.
“Defense has additional
investigation in progress
time to prepare it,” Gray
informed the court in his
The district attorney’s
office did not object to the
delay, and Brauer granted
it and reset the trial for Jan.
Police arrest two
Stanfield Police Chief
Bryon Zumwalt reported
his department arrested
two suspects involved in
a recent construction site
theft of more than $8,700
worth of tools.
William Eugene Stolz,
43, of Hermiston, and Cory
Edward Reiner, 45, of
Umatilla, each face a felony
charge of first-degree theft.
The property’s owner
reported the theft Friday
morning, according to
Zumwalt, after discovering
a break-in at a construction
trailer at a worksite. The
property is at the end of
North Sloan Street, on an
unnamed street in Stanfield.
Officer Tristan Walker
followed up leads Saturday
and found a stash of stolen
items at a residential
property at 630 E. Harding
“The property owner
was out of town at the
time the theft happened
and is not involved in
this incident,” Zumwalt
These suspects took
advantage of the resident’s
absence to use the area as
a site to hide their plunder.
Walker returned the
property to the owner.
Stanfield police booked
Stolz and Reiner into the
Umatilla County Jail,
Pendleton. Circuit court
records show the pair have
long criminal histories, and
Reiner has a case pending
since June for second-de-
gree theft, a misdemeanor.
Zumwalt said Reiner has
had “repeated brushes with
the law,” and Stolz’s record
includes more than 20
arrests. The case now is in
the district attorney’s office.
Council has light
load ahead of
Barring an event not on
the agenda for Tuesday’s
meeting, the members of
the Pendleton City Council
should get a early start on
the Thanksgiving weekend.
Besides the consent
agenda, a set of minor items
that is typically approved
en masse without debate,
the council isn’t set to take
action on anything Tuesday.
The only other activity is a
report about the Pendleton
The East Oregonian will not publish on
Th anksgiving Day
due to the postal holiday.
Look for your Holiday Edition
on Wednesday, Nov. 22
• Home for the Holidays special section
• A guide to the upcoming Farm Fair
• Wednesday and Thursday comics, features,
puzzles and TV listings
• BLACK FRIDAY INSERTS:
Big 5 Sporting Goods
Harbor Freight Tools