September 18, 1922 - March 22, 2011
Harold Werth was born Sept. 18, 1922, to Grace (Wooden) and Fred Werth on the family farm near Valley Junction. That farm is now the site of the Spirit Mountain Casino. He was a direct descendent of three families who came on the Oregon Trail. He was educated in the local schools, graduating from Willamina High School in 1940. He then attended Oregon State College for several terms before entering the military. During World War II, he was a B-17 bomber pilot in the 8th Air Force 34th Bomb Group stationed at Mendlesham Air Base near Ipswich, England. He returned to the United States on the French liner Isle de France, which had been turned into a troop ship. After the war, he resumed his education in agricultural engineering at Oregon State, graduating in 1948. In 1949, he and Gloria Engbretson were married in Astoria. Their marriage lasted 61 years. He began his career with the Extension Service in Hermiston, in western Umatilla County. He then went to Astoria, where he managed the Engbretson family seed company and farms. Eventually he returned to the Extension Service, serving in Benton County. He attended graduate school in agricultural economics at Michigan State University, and then returned to Benton County for the rest of his career. He was a member of Grace Lutheran Church, and a past member of Rotary. When Girl Scout Camp Whispering Winds was established, he served on site development, establishing the water system. For a number of years, he was on the board of the Children’s Farm Home, now known as Trillium Family Services. Following his retirement, he became “Mr. Fix-It” in the family, doing many jobs for older family members as well as for his children. He enjoyed deer hunting and fishing. He belonged to a group that hunted together for more than 50 years in the Maury Mountains, located in the Ochoco Mountains southeast of Prineville. The family camped, fished and hiked at Three Creek Lake south of Sisters for many years. He is survived by his wife, Gloria of Corvallis; his son, David, of Salem; daughter Bonnie Leggett (Bill) of Portland; daughter Carrie Werth-Rudolph (Mark) of Eugene; sister Velna Werth of Corvallis; sister Carol Wampler (Jim) of Stayton; and brother, Kenneth (Jan) of Powell Butte. His memorial service will take place at 1:30 p.m. today at Grace Lutheran Church, 435 N.W. 21st St. Memorial donations can be made to Grace Lutheran Foundation.
Harold Werth was born Sept. 18, 1922, to Grace (Wooden) and Fred Werth on the family farm near Valley Junction. That farm is now the site of the Spirit Mountain Casino. He was a direct descendent of three families who came on the Oregon Trail.... View Obituary & Service Information
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