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Death notices for Lillian Dillingham, Lois Best, Ronald Peterson and Barbara Basford


On Sunday, Feb. 22, 2004, Lillian Gray Dillingham died in Hood River, Ore. She was 87 years old.

Mrs. Dillingham was born in Winslow, Ariz., on Dec. 14, 1916, the daughter of Dottie Ann and John W. Bradford. She married Clifford Dillingham on May 18, 1935, and they moved to the Carson area in the early 40s. Mr. Dillingham died in the spring of 1963. She then married Datus Perry on Sept. 19, 1963. He preceded her in death in 1998.

Mrs. Dillingham worked at the Wind River Nursery, retiring in the late 1970s. She had lived in Skamania County for over 50 years, and during that time was a member of the Grange, Oddfellows and the Rebekah Lodge.

She enjoyed raising rabbits and chickens and working on the strawberry farm. She was the kind of person who would do anything for another.

Mrs. Dillingham is survived by her daughters Josephine Meyer, Vancouver, Grace Nowlin, Battle Ground, Alice Strunk, White Salmon, and Ruth Gittins, Carson; sons Wayne Dillingham, Stevenson, and Glen Dillingham, Carson; 21 grandchildren, 36 great-grandchildren, and three great, great-grandchildren.

A graveside service for Mrs. Dillingham will be held at 1 p.m. at Old Carson Cemetery in Carson on Friday, Feb. 27, 2004.

Gardner Funeral Home is handling arrangements.


Lois Mildred Best, 90, Lebanon, Ore., died Monday, Feb. 9, 2004, at Samaritan Lebanon Community Hospital.

She was born April 20, 1913, in Guilford, Mo., the daughter of Scott and Maggie (Wilson) LaMaster. She moved to Iowa as a child and attended school in Hancock. She married Elmer H. Best in August 1934. The couple resided in Iowa, then Denver and settled in Richland in 1944. In 1957, they moved to Benton City, where she worked 10 years for Prosser Pak Frozen Foods. The couple returned to Richland in 1982. Mr. Best preceded her in death in 1984 and she then moved to Stevenson. She moved to Lebanon, Ore., in August 2001.

She enjoyed crocheting, gambling and taking trips to Reno, spending time with people and visiting.

She is survived by two daughters Linda Robertson, Lebanon, and Janet Kay Martin, Stevenson; sister Velma Olson, Elk Horn, Iowa; three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by daughter Carolyn Best and son Jerry Best.

Services will be held Sunday, Feb. 29, 2004, at Shepherd of the Hill Lutheran Church in Stevenson.

Huston-Jost Funeral Home, Lebanon, is handling arrangements.


Hood River resident Ronald Gene Peterson, known fondly to many as Swede, died in Portland, Ore., on Feb. 19, 2004, at the age of 60.

He was born on May 14, 1943 in Brainerd, Minnesota, the son of Lauris Elmer and Goldy Pearl (Peck) Peterson. When he was 11 years old, he moved with his family to Hebo, Ore. He graduated from Nestucca Union High School in Cloverdale, Ore. On Oct. 30, 1965, he married Betty Jane Ernst in Reno, Nev.

Mr. Peterson worked for the United States Department of Agriculture for 32 years, retiring in 2001. He received numerous awards, including Manager of the Year U.S.D.A, the Governor's Award (presented to him by Vic Atiyah for Manager of the Year), Distinguished Employee Award from the U.S.D.A in 2000, and the Group Honor Award in 2003.

Mr. Peterson loved spending time with his grandchildren, fishing, and being on the river. He enjoyed life and people, and would often spend time talking with friends and acquaintances. Mr. Peterson was well-known and loved by many people throughout the mid-Columbia area. He was a positive man, always putting a good spin on everything he did. He was full of life and love and he will be missed greatly by his family.

Survivors include his wife, Betty Peterson, Hood River; daughters Christine Sherrell and Connie Wheat, also of Hood River; brothers Larry Peterson of Silverton, Ore., Rodney Peterson, Hebo, Ore., and David Peterson, Parkdale, Ore.; grandchildren Nicole, Elliott and Parker Sherrell and Adam and Emilee Wheat.

A celebration of Mr. Peterson's life will be held at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2004, at the Hood River Alliance Church. Gardner Funeral Home's Columbia River Crematory was entrusted with cremation arrangements while Anderson's Tribute Center handled memorial services.


Barbara Basford, 49, died at her home in Lyle on Feb. 14, 2004.

She was born in Oahu, Hawaii, on April 25, 1954, to Gene and Elizabeth (Campbell) Grieg. As a child of a Navy pilot, she traveled around the world while growing up. The family settled in San Diego, Calif. and on Jan. 23, 1981, she married Joseph Basford in Ramona, Calif.

The couple moved to Bingen, and to Snowden and White Salmon, before settling in Lyle where she lived for the last 15 years.

Mrs. Basford worked as a cashier at Bridgemart and Heidi's.

She loved the Gorge, hiking, gardening, reading and splitting wood. She was also a bird and animal lover.

Mrs. Basford is survived by her husband Joe, Lyle; brother Joe Grieg and sisters Jane Grieg and Cathy Grieg, all of San Diego; and parents Gene and Rita Grieg, Arizona.

Private cremation was handled by Gardner Funeral Home's Columbia River Crematory in White Salmon.


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