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About Smoke signals. (Grand Ronde, Or.) 19??-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 1, 2018)
JANUARY 1, 2018
S moke S ignals
George W. McEachran III
July 8, 1948 – Nov. 30, 2017
Tribal Elder George W. McEachran III, 69, was born July 8, 1948,
in Portland, Ore., and walked on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, in Grand
His parents were George Wilber McEachran Jr. of Coalwood, Mont.,
and Bernice Vera Howe of Grand Ronde.
He served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War and was hon-
He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Richard Dean
McEachran, who died on July 4, 1983, in Portland, Ore.
He is survived by a sister, Barbara Jean Danforth (McEachran) and
her husband, Allen; and nieces, Amy Elizabeth Danforth and her son,
Trey Norton, and Sara Rose Johnson and her husband, Jeremy, and
His family thanks the Grand Ronde community for its help and
support given to George as he was his happiest living at Grand Ronde.
A sharing of memories and celebration of life with veterans’ honors
will be held at noon Friday, Jan. 12, at the Elders Activity Center,
48940 Blacktail Drive.
Dallas Mortuary Tribute Center is caring for the family.
Leon “Chips” Tom
July 15, 1928 – Dec. 16, 2017
Former Tribal Council member of the
Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde
Leon “Chips” Tom, who many consid-
ered to be the face of the Grand Ronde
Tribe because of his prominent role in a
mid-2000s Spirit Mountain Communi-
ty Fund ad campaign, walked on at the
age of 89 on Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017.
Chips was born on July 15, 1928, in
Grand Ronde to Clinton Tom and Cora
(Voutrin) Tom. He attended Grand
Ronde Elementary and Willamina
High schools, as well as Chemawa In-
dian School. He lettered in three sports
– baseball, basketball and football.
“Chips is arguably the finest athlete
that ever attended Willamina High,”
said Rod Pedersen, who played with
Tom at Willamina High in 1946-48.
In an April 2009 Smoke Signals story, Tom recalled playing baseball
for the Grand Ronde Tribal team. He was in his teens, 15 or 16, and
most of his teammates were in their mid-to-late 20s. “Everything to me
was kind of serious,” he said, “because I was playing with the big guys.”
Tom’s athleticism received interest from Oregon State University, the
University of Washington and several California colleges, as well as
from the National Football League’s New York Giants, but he instead
focused on his new family.
Chips married Marianne Kent and in 1948 they had their first child,
Victoria. He then went to work in the timber industry. Over the course
of the next five years, he and Marianne had three more children: Pa-
tricia, Michael and Kathleen.
Chips worked in the woods most of his life, retiring from Weimer
Logging in 1990. He served on the Grand Ronde Tribal Council from
1991 through 1999 following in the footsteps of his ancestors — he
was the third generation of Tribal chiefs — during a pivotal time as
the Tribe decided to pursue gaming as a revenue-generating econom-
ic development option and opened Spirit Mountain Casino. In 1996,
Chips was the top vote-getter in a Tribal Council election that saw 15
candidates seeking seats.
His emphasis has always been on our future natural resources, his
passion for the outdoors and environmental issues were always in the
forefront working with state and federal governments to protect our
natural resources of water, fish and wildlife, timber and our lands. He
said in his 1996 Tribal Council candidate statement: “It is important
to provide the highest quality of education and health care. I attend
as many Tribal children’s activities as I can and enjoy the time getting
acquainted with the children.”
In addition to Tribal Council, he served on the Tribe’s Timber Com-
mittee, the former Land Acquisition Committee and the Facility Design
Committee for the Grand Ronde Health & Wellness Center.
In retirement, he enjoyed fishing, spending time with his family and
watching all football, basketball and baseball games.
Survivors include his three daughters, Victoria Lawrence (David),
former Tribal Council member Kathleen Tom-King (Louis) and Patricia
Tom-Martin (John, deceased), and son, Michael Tom, all of Salem; six
grandsons, Darrel Lawrence (Kristie), Justin Martin (Jennifer), Ryan
Tom (Michelle), Mason Keppinger (Tiffany), Devin Lawrence and Caleb
Tom (Susan); and 10 great-grandchildren.
He was a larger-than-life amazing man, friend to many and a force to
be reckoned with. He was a legend in the woods, knowing where every
logging road, trail, waterfall and old-growth timber was without the
help of a GPS. He loved hard and played hard. His happiest moments
were spent with family and friends, and at Tribal functions. A quiet
man in so many ways, but when he spoke everybody had better be
listening. He was funny, handsome and had a dry sense of humor. But
most of all he was a man of high integrity with a love for his culture.
The recitation of the rosary was held at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec.
27, at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Grand Ronde. A funeral service
was held at 10 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 28, in the Tribal gym, 9615 Grand
Ronde Road, Grand Ronde. A meal at the Elders Activity Center, 48940
Blacktail Drive, Grand Ronde, followed his burial.
Assisting is Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service of Salem.
You’re getting a new Medicare card!
Cards will be mailed between April 2018 – April 2019
You asked and we listened. You’re getting a new Medicare card! Between April
2018 and April 2019, we’ll be removing Social Security numbers from Medicare
cards and mailing each person a new card. This will help keep your information
more secure and help protect your identity.
You’ll get a new Medicare number that’s unique to you and it will only be used
for your Medicare coverage. The new card won’t change your coverage or
benefits. You’ll get more information from Medicare when your new card is
Here’s how you can get ready:
■ Make sure your mailing address is current. If your address needs to be
corrected, contact Social Security at ssa.gov/myaccount or 1-800-772-1213.
TTY users can call 1-800-325-0778.
■ Beware of anyone who contacts you about your new Medicare card. We’ll
never ask you to give us personal or private information to get your new
Medicare number and card.
■ Understand that mailing everyone a new card will take time. Your card might
arrive at a different time than your friend’s or neighbor’s.