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Obituaries

Death notices for Luella Holtmann, Joel Fink, Molly Kuneki, Jack Spring

LUELLA HOLTMANN

Luella Blanche Bauer Holtmann was born to Edwin "Pete" and Lucille Bauer on June 15, 1931, in Witt, Ill. She died on Sept. 4, 2007.

During her early years, she lived on a rural Illinois farm. She had memories of growing up with no electricity, of the team of workhorses her father used for farming, and the fresh warm milk that she would drink right after her father milked the cow. Because of her mother's health, the family moved from Illinois to the Northwest in the late 1930s. They first lived in Culver, Ore., and then Copalis Beach. During World War II, they lived in Vancouver. After the war, they moved to Trout Lake.

Mrs. Holtmann attended Trout Lake High School, graduating in 1949. She attended nursing school for one year and later on, worked for the DNR as a "fire lookout" on Greyback and Diamond Gap lookouts. In 1955, she worked at the Salmon Nutrition Laboratory and continued there until 1956.

On Dec. 9, 1955, she married Ray Holtmann, her husband of 51 years. From then on, she worked primarily as a homemaker, raising her two children.

In 1966, Mrs. Holtmann began a new career that was to span the next three decades. She became a cone/seed buyer for "Brown Seed Company" in the Trout Lake area. She purchased Douglas Fir, Noble Fir, Spruce and Pine cones, among others, for the purpose of preparing seeds for planting, and for those seeds to be sold all over the world. At time, she also purchased items such as snowberries and rosehips. She grew in knowledge and skill, and was recognized by many as an expert in the area.

She enjoyed oil painting and was quite talented. Some of her paintings still grace the homes of family members. For well over a decade, she also managed the "Loft Art Studio" from her home, and painted, along with her daughter, wilderness Alaskan scenes on "gold pans" that were shipped to Alaska to be sold in gift shops.

Over a 50 year period, she collected antique "salt cellers" and slowly put together a "giant priceless treasure" of a collection. Still another interest, is that Mrs. Holtmann loved to read. And anyone that knew her for very long became aware that there was an unusually large variety and community of birds that dwelled around her house taking advantage of the many bird feeders, including a number of hummingbird feeders.

She taught Sunday School at the Trout Lake Presbyterian Church and last December was ordained as an Elder of the Church. She enjoyed, very much, serving in that capacity.

With all her various interests, she befriended people from all walks of life. You received a smile and a cup of coffee. You were welcome there, and you knew it. Mrs. Holtmann even opened her home to a number of "unofficial" foster children.

Mrs. Holtmann is survived by her husband of 51 years, Ray; children MaryLee Allaway and Larry Holtmann, both of Trout Lake; eight grandchildren Jason Allaway, Rachel Winter, Priscilla Bristow-Hanna, Robert Allaway, Louis Allaway, Stephanie Allaway, Shanna Holtmann and Justin Holtmann; and four great-grandchildren Eleesha, Jayden, Liam, and Jackson.

A memorial celebration will be held at the Trout Lake Presbyterian Church on Saturday, Sept. 15, 2007, at 1 p.m.

Immediately following the service, there will be a dinner served, for those who attended the memorial, at the Trout Lake Grange.

JOEL FINK

Joel Dean Fink was born on May 17, 1956, in White Salmon to Merlin and Dona (Holman) Fink. He died at his home in Underwood, Washington, on Sept. 10, 2007, at the age of 51.

He grew up in Vancouver, attending Columbia River High School. Mr. Fink worked for Burlington Northern Railroad for over 20 years. He enjoyed playing city league softball and was an avid Seahawks fan.

Survivors include son Dustin Fink of Seaside, Ore.; daughter Hilerie Fink of Eugene, Ore.; wife Vickie Fink of Eugene, Ore.; stepdaughter Essa Gandy of Vancouver; father and stepmother Merlin and Franny Fink of White Salmon; brothers Terry Fink, Randy Fink, Russ Fink, all of Vancouver and Mark Fink of Underwood; sister Sheri Boal of Vancouver; and four beloved grandchildren, Nahla, Jevon, Chyna and Kaya. Preceding Mr. Fink in death was his mother, Dona, who died in 1994.

A celebration of his life will be held in Vancouver on Sept. 29, 2007, at 11 a.m. at New Heights Church (7613 NE 58th Avenue).

Gardner Funeral Home handled cremation arrangements.

MOLLY KUNEKI

Molly Mary Kuneki died on Sept. 13, 2007. She was 74 years old. Mrs. Kuneki was born in Harrah on May 29, 1933, to Cecilia (Umtuch) and Frank Johnson.

Mrs. Kuneki loved to dig roots and pick berries, but mostly enjoyed fishing along the Columbia River. More than anything, her life revolved around her children.

She is survived by her daughters Bessie Kuneki, Murdock, Inez Kuneki, Wapato, Bobbie Johnson, Gig Harbor; sons Ronnie Kuneki, Bellingham, Alex Kuneki, Walla Walla, Michael Toontot and Daniel Kuneki, both of Bingen; grandchildren Frank Kuneki, Toppenish, Roxanne Whitefoot, Harrah, Leon Kuneki, Bingen, Paul Kuneki, Wapato, Silas Barbosa, Wapato, Luis Rios, Wapato, Kyle Wheeler, Harrah, Mary Kuneki, Bingen, Charles Kuneki, Stevenson, and Matthew Kuneki, Bingen; great-grandchildren Michael, Alexander, Jamie, Cecilia, Brianna, Kelly Jo, Kaylie, Kotah, Tristan, David, Joseph III, Chante, Dakota, Silas, Chestina and Joseph; and numerous nieces and nephews in the Jackson, Strong, Teniwesh, Anderson and Johnson families.

A dressing ceremony was held on Friday, Sept. 14, 2007, at Gardner Funeral Home in White Salmon, with services at the Husum Church of God and burial at the Kuneki Cemetery in White Salmon on Saturday, Sept. 15.

JACK SPRING

Jack Spring was born in Portland, Ore., on June 16, 1914, to Veronika (Fillips) and Krischtof Spring. He died on Sept. 16, 2007, in Lyle, at the age of 93.

Mr. Spring grew up in Portland and attended Benson High School. On Aug.t 18, 1955, he married Melba E. Hutto-McCafferty in Portland. As a young man, Mr. Spring started working for his uncle learning the auto body/fender and paint trade; it was quickly apparent that he had a knack for working on cars. During World War II, he served in the Merchant Marines as a welder and leadman for floating and repairing ships before and immediately following the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Mr. Spring worked as an automotive body shop foreman in Portland, was co-owner of the Evergreen Tavern in the Old Town of North Bonneville and a mechanic for Skamania County Road District No. 1, retiring in 1977. Working in his shop was more than a job to Jack, it was also one of his hobbies. He did a lot of fabrication and loved every minute of it.

In his early days, he enjoyed racing motorcycles and cars. Later, he enjoyed the farming life, raising horses and cattle. An outdoorsman, Mr. Spring also liked fishing, hunting and shooting his guns. He was a man who, on the outside, seemed coarse, but he was very tender-hearted.

He was an active member of the Stevenson Eagles Lodge in Stevenson, Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Stevenson, and the National Rifle Association.

Mr. Spring is survived by his daughter Brenda Sorensen, Lyle; son Rod McCafferty, Skamania; sister Anna Coalman, Lake Havasu City, Ariz.; foster son Gatlin Cummings, Anchorage, Alaska; 16 grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by son Ken McCafferty on March 1, 1980, wife Melba Spring on Nov. 18, 2001, and granddaughter Ashley Clark on Jan. 16, 2002.

A memorial service for Mr. Spring will be held at Gardner Chapel, 139 1st Street, in Stevenson on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2007, at 2 p.m.

Gardner Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

Memorials may be made to Hospice of the Gorge, PO Box 36, Hood River, Ore. 97031.

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