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The New Era Paper
Sweet Home, Oregon
July 4, 2012     The New Era Paper
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July 4, 2012

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1 ,e r,, - July 4, 2012 Vou. COhlMUNITV Page 9 Firefighters, Elks remember Ron Fogle "Announcing final call, final call for Assistant Chief-Fire Mar- shal Ron Fogle, who served with dedication with the Sweet Home Fire Department. You will be forever missed. You are gone too soon. May the sun always shine on your path, and may the wind always be at your back - 16:39 (4:39 p.m.)." - Linn County Central Dis- patch By Scan C. Morgan Of The New Era Friends and family paid their re- spects to Ron Fogle during a memo- rial held Thursday afternoon, June 28, at the Sweet Home Elks Lodge. Fogle died on May 30 at age 90. He was born on July 19, 1921. Fogle, a member of the Elks since Jan. 12, 1949, served as Sweet Home Fire Department's only paid staff member, assistant fire chief and fire marshal for 24 years. He joined the department on Sept. 1, 1946 and retired on June 30, 1986. The Ellks Lodge memorial cere- mony, Past Exalted Ruler AI Bashaw said, was meant "to remind the liv- ing that our brothers are never for- gotten." The Elks tolled a bell I 1 times, a number significant to the Elks: "Wherever Elks may roam, what- ever their lot in life may be, when this hour falls upon the dial of night, the great heart of Elkdom swells and throbs. It is the golden hour of rec- ollection, the homecoming of those who wander, the mystic roll call of those who will come no more. Living or dead, Elks are never forgotten, never forsaken. Morning and noon may pass them by, the light of day sink heedlessly in the West, but ere the shadows of midnight shall fall, the chimes of memory will be peal- ing forth the friendly message, 'To our absent members.'" The Oregon Fire Service Honor Guard tolled the bell in three sets of five, the number rung to signal the end of an emergency and return to quarters. It symbolizes "the devo- tion that these brave souls had for their duty, (representing) the end of our comrades' duties and that they will be returning to quarters. And so, to those who have selflessly giv- en their lives for the good of their fellow man, their tasks completed, their duties well done, to our com- rades, their last alarm, they are go- ing home." "He was just a great guy," said Fire Chief Mike Beaver. "Very friendly, very positive, very dedicat- ed. He had a 40-year service to the Fire Department. He was a mentor for a lot of people. H e was every- body's friend and an excellent fire- fighter." He continued to support the Fire Department through his last days, Beaver said. Fogle was exalted ruler from 1968 to 1969, said Past Exalted Rul- er and District Deputy Grand Exalted Ruler Dennis Bechtel. He was a life member of the Elks and an honorary member of the Elks Foundation. "Ron was a true Elk," Bechtel said. "He believed in practicing the principles of our order: charity, jus- tice, brotherly love and fidelity. "Ron was always polite, friend- ly to-everyone. He always shook your hand and would say your name. If you ran into Ron, he always took time to greet you with his infectious smile." He was a man of integrity and always helping out, Bechtel said. "We are thankful to have known him. He will be truly missed but not forgotten." Bechtel presented a 65-year membership pin to Fogle's family. Drafted in 1942, Fogle served in the Army Air Force during World War II. He worked as an airplane in- strument specialist. He was trained in P-51 Mustangs, but the first plane Photos by Sean C. Morgan Sweet Home Fire Chief Mike Beaver presents Ron Fogle's helmet to members of the Fogle family during a me- morial service held at the Elks Lodge on Thursday. A member of the Oregon Fire Service Honor Guard tolls the bell for Ron Fogle, signifying his final return to quarters. District Depu D, Grand Exalted Ruler Dennis Bechtel, former Exalted Rul- er for Sweet Home, delivers memorial speech and a ceremonial branch for Ron Fogle during the Elks' ceremony. Wylie McKinnon of Eugene plays the bagpipes, leading a color guard past retired and serving firefighters during the memorial service held for Ron Fogle. he ever worked on was a B-17. Fogle had too much living to do to be tied down by his age and health, said his daughter Debbie McKinney of Lebanon. "Many peo- ple will tell you about their physical woes. They're whining to get sym- pathy." Her father would mention his 22 surgeries, McKinney said. "It was his badge of honor. He never gave up." When he had hip surgery and then broke his other hip, he said, "Get me into therapy. I have too much life to live," McKinney said. He loved people too, she said. Every time there was a get-together, he was there. "He didn't know any- one who wasn't a friend." Daughter Dianna Gardner of Washougal, Wash., was struck by the wonderful life he led as she was going through photos, she said. He loved exploring and was delighted in discovering basaltic tower forma- tions above Green Peter. His pastor, Ted Boatsman of the Lebanon Assembly of God, thought Fogle enjoyed his messages. "But he slept through some of them," Boatsman said. "Although ! never mentioned it." Fogle wouldn't rush off after church, he said. He would wait in the foyer to greet other church mem- bers. "He seemed to enjoy involve- ment with people who were worried about eternal things," Boatsman said. "I really appreciated Ron Fogle. I'm going to miss him. He was a won- derful man. Every Sundsay, I look down that aisle. It doesn't look the same without him." Fogle married his first wife in 1942, and they divorced three years later. He married his second wife, Martha Smith, and they were mar- ried for 47 years until her death in 1995. In 1997 he married Opal Stahl, a South Dakota native. Fogle reared four daughters, Sandra Greene of Sweet Home; Gardner; Karen Fisher of Lebanon; and McKinney. Fogle graduated from Sweet Home Union High School in 1939. He worked as a barber for eight to 10 years and then at the Post Office for two years. He taught Red Cross first aid for many years and received a certificate for teaching more than 500 hours: He enjoyed gardening and hunt- ing. He also did needlework, and he made 20 afghans for his grandchil- dren. He was Sportsman's Holiday Parade grand marshal in 2003. At the time, Fogle recalled mov- ing during the fourth grade from the Brush Creek area to Sweet Home. "There were 189 people in town and the streets were dirt, mud in the winter," Fogle said. "My grandparents were farmers and my dad, Dewey, was barber here forever," Fogle said. "My dad set up his barber shop near the Bohemian Club but there were two major fires in those days and one of them burned down his shop." With fewer than 200 persons in town, Fogle said youngsters were expected to "make your own enter- tainment." "We played on the streets, and they were dirt streets," Fogle said. "I remember the city policeman would carry a shovel and he'd pack gravel to holes in the street." Fogle said his daughters liked car tides with their dad because his vehicle was equipped with an emer- gency radio. "They knew that if a call went out, I'd head for the fire and they would get to go," Fogle said. He said he has had a good life. "! love Sweet Home," Fogle said. "I've seen a lot of places but not another place I'd want to live. My roots are here."