Sunday, December 25, 2011

Living a Busy Life in the "Hidden Gem"

Living on 40 acres is hard physical work, and when that is combined with working at the Corbett Post Office, Kristy Mayes lives a busy life with her boyfriend Jimmy and their three large dogs. Kristy says Corbett is a "hidden gem" of a community and she loves getting to greet and talk with the local folks that stop by for their mail as well as those on her route. Moving to Corbett in 1987 with her father, she chose to attend Gresham High School to stay in touch with her friends from her previous neighborhood. Later, her sister joined them in Corbett.  Kristy went on to attend Mt. Hood Community College and live on her own. When her father became ill with cancer and then passed in 1992, Kristy moved back into their Corbett home and continues to live there today with her many horses, cows and goats. Her sister went on to become a professional nanny and lives in San Francisco. Kristy's property is remote and private- just what she loves after a busy and social day working at the post office. Kristy got the job in 2003 as a temporary sub, and then applied for a permanent position when one became available. Looking out for those in need is one benefit of her job. Babysitting for a single mom or caring for the elderly is a passion she finds joy in following through on. Kristy also helps keep the books for Jimmy's heating company, Port-Air Mechanical. The company deals with both residential and commerical heating, cooling and refrigeration systems. When there is a rare opportunity to relax, Kristy loves to watch Korean movies. The problem is, not all come with subtitles, so she is currently listening to tapes and learning the language!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

An Ethnic German

Hugo Lueck describes himself as an "Ethnic German" born in Romania. Hugo met wife Christine in 1946, and she also was German. Moving to the U.S. in 1957, Hugo and Christine married in 1959 when Hugo was just 20 years old. The home that Hugo currently lives in was built by he and Christine many years ago. Hugo says they made a "great team" before she passed in 1997 from illness. Married for 45 years, the two of them built their Corbett area home to accommodate her severe rheumatoid arthritis. Now that Hugo is older, he says he has a great appreciation for the special features they included in their home, such as lots of support bars to grab onto around the home as well as easy access to both the up and downstairs from the outside of the home. They also built the home to be easy to maintain. Hugo doesn't care much for the wind, but says his wonderful neighbors make up for that! The scenery around his home and property remind him of Germany, and that brings him comfort. Having served as a deliverer for Meals on Wheels for ten years, Hugo now enjoys several meals of his own with senior friends at the Corbett Grange each Monday and also enjoys meals at the nearby Big Bear's Deli. He recently had a local gal come to live with him as a caregiver, and she reminds him the doctor says he needs to cut back on salt, so he luckily has been enjoying several of her home cooked meals lately! Always a great cabinet maker over the years, Hugo actually designed the Portland Area exam that cabinet makers need to pass in order to get licensed!! Recently Hugo shared some of his most precious tools with a special nephew. He says he wanted to make sure they would be both used and appreciated.

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Mother of Many and a Maker of Soap!

Kathy Johnson is the mother of seven children, ages 21 months to 21 years, and just a month ago became a grandmother! After Kathy's brother died at age seven, Kathy was an only child from age five on. Her family moved to the Springdale area of Corbett when she was just 13 months old, and after her brother Kenny passed of Cystic Fibrosis, her family moved up to the Aims area of Corbett. Kathy then lived in Aims until leaving for college. Attending Clackamas Community College, it was at this time she met her husband Jay, through some mutual friends. Getting married in 1988, Kathy got her hairdressing license and cut hair for many years. She later worked in advertising with Nickel Ads and also a sign company. Jay has worked as both a cabinet maker and also for the Portland Rescue Mission. Things changed for them a few years back when they purchased some goats to eat the blackberries on their property. Kathy researched 1.5 years the process of making soap from the goat's milk. After many attempts, everything "came together" and a successful recipe was created. Going full-time into soap making in Sept. 2009, now both Jay and Kathy are employed full-time with Farm Maid Soap, LLC. Kathy just got back in Sept. from a 16 day journey to China to teach Tibetans how to make soap for themselves! She and Corbett friend, Sheron Freuhauf went together and were at an elevation of 11,800 at their project site! Recently a a cargo shipment of soap has been sent to Korea of the Farm Maid soap. "Never put God in a box" laughs Kathy! Living in Corbett on the land she grew up on has been the ultimate joy for Kathy and her family. Her mom and step dad live in her original childhood home, while she and Jay live with their kids in their own home, and her daughter, son-in-law and baby live just next door! Over the years, her entire family has been heavily involved in the Corbett Children's Theatre. Jay is the current president, while Kathy is the musical director and does the "hard hair" for the casts. Her children and now granddaughter Evangeline have quite the Corbett foundation!

First Lady of Trout Creek Bible Camp

It all started back in 1990. Angela was a teenager and was working on crew at Trout Creek Bible Camp in Corbett. Joe Fahlman was a Program Assistant. They both got along well and shared laughs together. After dating for a few years, Angela enrolled in college. Attending NW Nazerene College for two years, she followed her heart back to the camp and Joe. They married and moved into housing at the camp to work and live. Eventually their family grew, and they now have three children. Taylor is 17 and a senior at Corbett High, Alyssa is 14 and Jordan is 10. Angela works full-time in the summer at the camp in Food Service, and weekends only during the school year. Joe is now the Head Director for the camp. They feel thankful to have their own home just across from the camp. Angela says she loves the big picture windows, original wood floors and lots of space for the family and visiting friends. They attend Aims Community Church just down the road, and Angela is involved as a volunteer AWANA leader at the church as well as at the Corbett Grade School as the treasurer for the PTA. Angela also volunteers heavily in her children's classrooms at the school and loves being involved with a variety of community functions. She says she appreciates the strong family values that are supported in the community and that folks really do care about others. When she has a rare "down moment," Angela says she loves to work on handmade and stamped greeting cards. She has sold them in the past but mostly likes to create and then give away the beautiful creations.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Because of a Bridge

Many years ago, because there were plans to build a bridge right over their Park Rose home, Connie Renner's family of origin was forced to move! The family had over 200 cows on their property and the entire road they lived on was occupied by family members. Connie's own family had beef cattle and her grandfather had dairy cattle. Knowing Raymond Smith, the family was offered a chance to purchase land from him in Corbett. The rest is history. Connie's family settled in the Corbett area and has been here since 1970. Connie met her husband Paul Renner at a rodeo dance at Memorial Coliseum and they eventually moved into a mobile home on her parent's property. Her parents moved to Bend and she ended up staying behind and marrying the man of her dreams. Twenty five years later they are still on the same Corbett property. Their daughter and son are now 21 and 19 years of age. Although Connie worked in management at  Fred Meyer the first few years, she now works at the Corbett Schools as a Instructional Assistant. She has been heavily involved with 4H over the years with her kids, as they have raised and shown cattle. They each have won numerous awards on both county and state level. Connie has also been to both Wash. DC and Italy with the Corbett Middle School as a chaperon. Living in Corbett and raising her family here has been marvelous on several levels for Connie. She has a sincere appreciation for her family's land and the ability to have taught her children how to raise cattle as she did as a youngster, and she also feels very blessed with the neighbors she shares fences with. She says her neighbors are "the best ever."

Sunday, December 11, 2011

A Texan with a Passion for Boating

This former Texan did not land in Corbett until 1998. Having been born and raised in Gunner, Texas, Ray Davenport joined the Coast Guard after high school. After traveling all over the Gulf Coast, he ended up  moving to Portland, Oregon to work for Schick Electric. Not wanting to be transferred to San Francisco with the company, Ray took another job that moved him to Boise, Idaho. Eventually, he landed back in the Portland area, settling in Gresham for 20 years before coming out to Corbett. Ray is married to wife Karen, and they have two grown sons, who both live locally. Ray also cheerfully states that they have two granddaughters. Having worked in the auto parts industry as a salesman for 35 years of his life, Ray is happy to now be retired. One of the benefits of retirement is spending time each Wednesday morning at the Corbett Market with his friends. Eating biscuits and gravy, the "Rusty Zipper Club" talk about everything and anything. Ray states that some of the kindest people ever live here in Corbett. He really appreciates the history of the area as well as the beauty. When he and Karen moved out to Corbett, he wanted a nice community as well as a view. He is pleased to have found both! Enjoying crossword puzzles and and reading, he enjoys spending time in his living room at home. He says the spot is peaceful and he loves all the many windows that their home has. Ray is an active member of the Citizen's Board Action Committee for the Sheriff's Budget Advisory and is also is a member of the Corbett Historical Society. With a past history of being in the Coast Guard, he has also been a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary. He has many fond memories of days spent  boating in the San Juan Islands with family and friends as well as being part of an assistance for the Coast Guard with the Auxiliary. I guess one could say boating is in his blood!

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Life of a Fisherman

Being a twin, Alan (Al) Abramson grew up with just his one brother and his parents in Canada. They lived just 67 miles from the Canada/U.S. border, and even today he retains his Canadian citizenship. Al's brother Jan and father did not share the same strong mechanical skills as Al, so his mother was constantly having him do all the "fixing" needed around the home. Not only repairing appliances, Al also created and built numerous "projects" in his youth, including a hot rod that he raced. After high school, Al attended junior college. Al met his wife Michelle when she was attending college in Bellingham, Wash., but it was not until 10 years later that they "reunited" and married. Michelle had left for Germany to teach for five years and had plans to marry. When that did not work out, Al caught wind of it and wrote her a letter. They decided to meet up in Boston where Michelle was coming back to get her Master's degree at Boston University. One month after reuniting, they married! Right from the beginning Al took Michelle commercial fishing in Alaska during the summers that she had off from teaching. Their first trip together, they caught a total of five fish all summer! Eventually moving to Portland, they continued to commercial fish each summer in Alaska. After a decade of marriage, they welcomed their son Gunner into their family. He also went with them to Alaska each summer to fish. In 1989, they decided to leave Portland and move to a more rural area. Corbett seemed to be the best spot for them as they loved the rural living with the "Home Depot" just miles away! After purchasing their home, they immediately went to work on remodeling it. With Al doing much of the work himself, they lived in their basement for three winters while extensive work was done, including a brand new kitchen. Al says he loves the quiet peacefulness of his home as well as the well lit and spacious living room that holds all of their momentos from their days of fishing in Alaska. Being the Grange Master for three years, both he and Michelle have put in numerous volunteer hours to make the grange a stronger presence in our modern times. Al is currently the secretary for the Helping Hands food program at the grange. He says the folks in Corbett are some of the best- kind, helpful and friendly.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Lots of Choices!

Sarah Brandt is a beautiful teenager, both in and out! Because of her drive to keep good grades, she will have many choices for college next fall. Brought home from the hospital to Corbett, she has lived in the same home her entire life, attending Corbett schools from kindergarten through her present senior year in high school. Sarah's father Bill has a Polish background, while her mother Becky has a Native American heritage. This actually will be a benefit to her when she begins applying to different colleges. Her "dream choice" is Stanford, but she is also applying to USC, Rice and the Univ. of Oregon. Sarah describes herself as being an "active" gal who has tried numerous activities, clubs and sports over the years. She has played the flute in the school band for five years, been in Girl Scouts, involved with the Corbett Children's Theatre for seven years and has played sports most of her youth. In high school she was able to go to State in track, and also played on the girl's varsity soccer team. Over the years, her 6th grade math teacher and past superintendent, Mr. Bob Dunton has played an important role as a mentor and one that has strongly encouraged her academically. Growing up in a small community and school has been special for Sarah as she feels the teachers really "know" the students and care about them and their futures. Sarah's folks have been married over 20 years and she has an older brother, Aaron who is currently a student at Linfield College. Having a warm and friendly smile, Sarah says she loves having lots of trees on her family's property. As a youngster she has climbed many of them! Growing up in the country has been ideal, being able to play outside all year round. Looking to a future outside of Corbett is not scary for her as she describes herself as a "people person" who is always up for a new adventure!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Names are Revealing!

She was born in her parent's Corbett home during a snow blizzard on February 4, 1925. Her mother declared "I will be glad when June is here!" after looking out the window and seeing the all white storm. Bethel June Bates Law Kirby DID indeed arrive! Because of the storm, Dr. Hughes from Gresham actually spent the night at the Bate's home after delivering June. One of five children, her only sister passed at age six due to pneumonia. When June was ready to start grade school, she was the first class of first graders to attend the "new" Springdale School in 1931! June has lived in Corbett her ENTIRE 86 years of life, except for one short three month period after getting married. After graduating high school, June took a bus into Portland and got a job at WP Fuller Paint Company. It was there that June met Ridgely "Ridge" Law and her life took a turn. Ridge was nearly ten years older, a single father with a young son (Gary Law) and was 6'6" tall with very handsome features. After meeting Ridge and falling in love, he moved away to become a Merchant Marine. Staying in touch, they married two years later. For a short three month period, June went with Ridge to CA. for his schooling. Moving back to Corbett, Ridge and June raised Gary together and also added two daughters to their family. Gary now lives in Springdale, Lynn resides in Springfield, and Becky is in Myrtle Creek, Oregon. June has nine grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren! Ridge and June were married for 52 blissful years before he passed. June swore she would never again marry when Ridge passed. After being single for three years, Floyd Kirby "came calling." Floyd was a friend who had lost his wife and he and June had known each other for 40 years. Soon they both realized there was a strong "connection" and married in 1999. They continue to live in the Corbett community, and June loves the home she has been in since 1962. Ridge was a carpenter and built the home. She says the location is close to everything. Over the years June was very involved with the Corbett Community Church and played the organ for 25 years as well as taught sunday school. She loved supporting her kids with Gary being an athlete and her girls both being cheerleaders. June says she has always felt "safe and connected" in the Corbett community. At one time she was a part of the "Merrymakers Club." There was a total of twelve women who became very close friends as they raised their families together. She says there are only three of them left, and she feels blessed to have had the life she has had, bumps and all!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

ONE YEAR Anniversary for the "Corbett Connector" blog!!

Just WHO IS the "Corbett Connector?!" As the middle child of five, I have moved literally ALL OVER the United States with my family. Both my folks married young (17 and 21) and college was not a reality for either given their economic background. Working hard, having a strong faith in God and sharing with others were the most important "lessons" my parents raised us with. My name is Michelle Carter Smith and I have moved 14 times since birth. I learned quickly to speak up and reach out in order to have friends in all our different locations. Playing sports nearly all my growing up years, I never excelled like my brothers, but always tried really hard and had a good time. I was voted "most inspirational" instead of bringing home any blue ribbons! After working hard to get through four years of college, I became a nanny on the east coast while my husband (and the only boyfriend I ever had!) finished his degree. After we married in 1987, we saved for a down payment for our first home in Troutdale. Giving birth to two sons, I was a busy/active mom. Nine years after moving to Troutdale, we landed in paradise, I mean...Corbett! Being a stay at home mom like my own, I also waited tables two nights a week in the summers at Tad's Chicken 'N Dumplins Restaurant on the Sandy River. Volunteering extensively in the Corbett schools and community, I wanted our two sons to understand the importance of "giving back." Just before our oldest son, Scott left for college, I began a new chapter in my life. After much thought and prayer, I became a Realtor. NO regrets! I have had an opportunity to meet some of the most wonderful people ever, which is why I began my blog.  THANK YOU to everyone that has given me their time and "story." I am just getting started! We have had OVER 18,000 "hits" on the website this past year. I will continue interviewing and blogging. Recently I also began collecting names for starting a no-cost "Corbett Connector Directory" that will include any business, club or organization that is Corbett based. Just let me know if you wish to be included!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A Change of Heart

It was back in 1977 when Dave Mysinger made the move to Corbett. Getting married to Twila, they both moved into a lovely Cape Cod style home on Hurlburt Road. Adding on a master bed and bath, they stayed for 20 years! In the summer of 1997 they designed and built their dream home further north in Corbett. With a magnificent view of the Columbia River Gorge, they appreciate how little traffic they get on their road. With a Montana river rock fireplace and vaulted cedar ceilings, they are both quite content! Twila is retired and Dave is "mostly" retired from his 40 year career with Baxter Auto Parts, still working on occasion. After 12 years in Corbett, Dave had a change of heart. Not being involved in the community, he did a 180 degree turn! Currently the treasurer for NEMCCA (Northeast Multnomah County Community Association), he is concerned about keeping Corbett's voice alive in the county and sheriff's office. Dave also was the head of the Volunteers in the Gorge that started in 2000. They are now disbanded, but an offshoot is the current Corbett Citizen's Patrol. Dave was on the Corbett Water Dept. budget committee for 15 years, ten as chairperson, and stepped down in 2010. Currently he is a volunteer with the U.S. Forest Service, with a time commitment of 8-10 days per month. When Dave is not working for Baxter or volunteering, he can be seen around his home either woodworking or restoring cars. He and Twila also love to travel in their motor home. Last year they went to Alaska for six weeks, but they usually never stay much longer than that anywhere. Dave says he is a real "home body" and usually has a yearning to get back to Corbett!

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Second Time Around

This is the second time Mildred "Midge" Davis has lived in Corbett. Born in 1927, Midge came home from the hospital and then spent until first grade living in the area. Her folks separated, then she and her mom moved to Portland. Many years later, Midge met the "man of her dreams" on a "set-up" by a mutual friend. It was love at first sight for both her and Bud. Getting married in 1949, Midge was marrying a man  from Texas who was two years older than her, and formerly in the Navy. Once married, Bud and Midge moved around a bit for work and had four children together, including twin boys. At one point, Midge describes living in a two room house with all four kids and a puppy! Once the kids were grown and gone, her and Bud were asked to come and stay/care for Midge's second cousins, who lived in Corbett. Midge was especially ready to go back "home." She and Bud purchased a mobile home and lived on the property while caring for the two relatives. After they passed, Bud and Midge purchased a mobile classroom at an auction from Corbett High School. Bringing it to the property, their church helped them build a home around the classroom! Midge's family has owned the property since 1905, and she said they have been approached over the years to sell out to timber companies. "Never" is their answer! Midge and Bud have been involved at Corbett Community Church for numerous years, with Bud being both an elder and a fill-in preacher. The couple has also been involved with the weekly lunches available at the Grange on Mondays. Just a week ago, Bud spoke at the Veteran's Breakfast up at the Corbett school's MPB. Midge has always loved to both sing and sew. She said she made all of the kid's clothes for years. The boys grew tired of it, but her daughter always appreciated the pretty dresses! These days, Midge enjoys the quiet beauty of the acreage she and Bud share in a place they call home.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Making it the Best

As a young child, Dave MacFadden and his brother were placed in a Quaker orphanage in Philadelphia, PA. for eight years. Dave's father had departed and his mother was unable to care for her young sons. Dave says those years with his brother were during the Depression, and he felt blessed to be well fed, clothed and cared for. He especially was thankful to be with his brother. When Dave was 10, his mother had remarried and came to get the boys. Hoping it would be a great situation, it was not. His new stepfather was very harsh and abusive. Dave left home at age 17 and wanted to make his life the best it could be. Meeting and falling in love with Darlene, they were married for 61 years and had five children together before she passed last year. Dave has had a very full and blessed life, becoming a doctor and volunteering heavily throughout his now 83 years. Only three years ago did Dave retire from being a chiropractor. It was only due to his age and health that he walked away from a career he loved. Boy Scouts was another passion- he served 60 years with the organization, 35 years with the Kiwanis and another 35 years as a search and rescue pilot for the Civil Air Patrol. Dave and Darlene had moved from Montana to the Gresham area in 1975. They were looking for another place that was also "open and inviting." Living in a trailer home in Gresham and waiting for the "right place" to become available, Dave was not happy. One day at the athletic club, a Realtor approached him and asked if he was content where he was living. "No!" was the immediate answer. The next thing he knew, he and Darlene were purchasing acreage in Corbett! With ten grandchildren and five great grand children, Dave is still hanging out on his farm, but travels often to visit those he loves most. What about his beloved brother? He became a minister and lives back east. They are still very close and stay in contact regularly. Dave really did make his life "the best."

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Windy Woman!

When Penny Rossman arrived in Corbett in 1975, she was married to David but they did not yet have children. Being an Oregon State University graduate, she and David had become friends with Lee and Diana Tracy while all were in college together. The married couples both longed to live rurally. John Leamy's parents had large acreage in Corbett that they were selling, and so the Rossman's and the Tracy's each decided to purchase 40 acre parcels from them. David, a retired mechanical engineer, worked along side his business partner and wife Penny to build their dream home. Eventually, the couple added both a son and daughter to their family. Jake is now 30 and lives locally. Kate is 27 and lives in San Francisco with her husband. Still living in the same home they built 36 years ago, Penny recently got a remodeled bathroom. Living on very private acreage, she says she loves the huge window within the all tile, walk-in shower. Being an active gal, she loves walking around the area and appreciates there is little to no wind in their area. She is a member of the Portland to Coast walking team "Second Wind". Penny is also a member of "Windy Women" Readers. Twelve years ago, she and six other local women organized a book club because they all loved to read. They gave themselves their name. Penny said the women are all very unique and different, and that is what she loves most. Each gal gets a chance to pick a book, everyone reads and then they discuss. Their latest book involves Seattle, so they will be making a trip there to further discuss, investigate and enjoy the city and each other. Over the years, Penny has volunteered on many levels. Actively volunteering at the Corbett schools over many years, she was also a den mother for Jake's Cub Scout troop for four years. Penny is a founding member of the Corbett Education Foundation and a member of the Springdale School Community Association, acting as treasurer. She is also involved with the Kiwanis Club of the Columbia River Gorge. A memorable moment for her outside of Corbett? Meeting and shaking hands with Robert Kennedy in Portland two days before he was shot down and killed in California. She was a high school student at the time and remembers the bells next door to Jefferson High ringing the entire day.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Taking Care of Others

Patti McCarthy has always been a "country girl," growing up on the John Day River, between Spray and Kimberly, Oregon. Not one who likes to be idle, Patti grew up playing outdoors and riding horses. Working in the summers for her dad who was divorced and owned the "Tippy Canoe" restaurant in Troutdale, Patti says she worked hard. She was the "Chief cook and bottle washer" as well as the busser, waitress and any other needed position! At a young age, Patti married for a very brief time. Her son Jeremy was a product of the union, and Patti says she is still very close to her 38 year old son. Jeremy also grew up in John Day and is now married and has five children. Patti says she loves to visit the family in Prineville whenever she gets an opportunity. After working at a mill in Heppner for several years, Patti decided to move back out to the Troutdale area that she was familiar with as a child. In 2007 she moved in with an old family friend who lived in Corbett. Patti started to become involved with the community as a volunteer and eventually met the Corbett gentleman that she is now living with as his caregiver. Having plenty to keep her busy, she is a caregiver for the older man as well as the one who cares for his home and property as well. Patti says it has been a wonderful situation for both of them to help each other out. Patti also has side jobs as a home cleaner for other Corbett folks as well. When Patti has free time, she loves to volunteer at the Corbett Grange, often putting in as many as 20 hours per week! Living in Corbett has been a huge blessing on many levels. Only one topic brings more of a sparkle to her eye- her wonderful grandchildren! Patti says it is absolute JOY for her to spend time with them, either playing outside like she did as a child or reading to them. When they get to visit her in Corbett, life does not get any better!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

"Teal" from Outdoor School

They both attended Whitman College, they both worked at Outdoor School, they both went on to graduate school, but never met until they both worked at Outdoor School for a SECOND time. After getting their advanced degrees, Dan and Jennifer Prince were destined to be together! Dan grew up in Fairbanks, Alaska and loved the close feel of community. On Thanksgiving, the village would gather at the school for a huge feast, all wearing their best seal skin parkas. The delicious meal would include musk ox jerky and "Eskimo ice-cream." The ice-cream was made of fermented salmon eggs, Crisco, seal fat and berries. Dan and Jennifer originally moved to Aims in 2003, and later moved closer into Corbett in 2006. Their home is nestled in a canyon and truly is remote and private although just a short drive to I-84. Dan says he loves the quiet seclusion and natural beauty that surrounds them. Their home is very warm, inviting and spacious with lots of windows to show off the setting as well as lots of wood on the interior to blend into their woodsy surroundings. Having two sons aged eight and 11, Dan has been involved with their lives from the beginning. Being the Director of the Outdoor School for all of Multnomah County, Dan recently took his 20 years of experience and education to the Corbett Grade School to help with their three year Gorge Study. Dan networked with ECO, to help teach kids about the natural history of the Corbett area. They removed invasive plants on campus and planted native plants in their place. Dan is thrilled that Corbett recently fund raised the needed monies to send the 6th grade students to a FULL week of Outdoor School in the spring of 2012. High school students volunteer their time and serve as counselors, learning leadership, team building and communication skills. The 6th graders get "hands on science" for the entire week, and all ages get to each choose an Outdoor School name for the week! Dan "Teal" Prince says he appreciates Corbett community's dedication to making education such a high priority!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Well Balanced Life

When Matthew O'Connell's folks moved to Corbett, he was a mere 8 months old. His parents had purchased acreage from the Kerslake family and built their dream home, modeled after a 1988 Street of Dreams model home they once admired. Today Matthew is 23 years old and is the oldest of three boys. Christian is 20 and Lucas is 17. Growing up in Corbett, Matthew was an avid soccer player from kindergarten until graduating in 2006. After finishing school, he coached Corbett JV boy's soccer for a year and also Corbett Middle School coed soccer for a year as well. Matthew is not only passionate about soccer, but is a musician as well, playing piano, saxophone, and guitar. In band at Corbett from 5th grade on, his entire family is musical, both singing and playing various instruments. Combining his music with his faith, he led worship for the high school youth group and was also a youth pastor for the middle school kids at Corbett Community Church. Graduating from Mt. Hood Community College with an associates degree, he is now majoring in business at Eastern Oregon University. They have a satellite campus at Mt. Hood Community College. Matthew's father Nick passed away on December 15, 2009 after a very short battle with cancer. Matthew says that the entire ordeal has given him a new appreciation for the GIFT of life and he now takes very little for granted. A smile comes to his face as he talks about drinking his daily cup of morning coffee while getting to look out the window at his family's tranquil acreage.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Corbett Girl to be Married Soon!

It was all about shortening the commute. Catherine Jones moved with her family to Corbett when she was four years old because her mom's commute to work would be greatly reduced with the new location. Her mom Carla is now retired from both the US Navy and the US Forest Service. Catherine grew up with sister Jeanette in Corbett and attended Corbett schools from kindergarten until graduating in 2010. Always an athlete, Catherine was involved with basketball, volleyball, and softball for as long as she can remember. When her mom took over the Corbett Booster's concessions Catherine's freshman year of high school, Catherine also became involved, volunteering for the Boosters in a variety of ways. Growing up in Corbett was a positive experience for Catherine and she has very fond memories of working both inside and outside her family's home and property with her grandparents. A favorite spot is the family kitchen which is similar to a commercial kitchen with it's appliances and size. The home previously was a group home that housed 15 boys! Living with her grandparents since birth, both passed when she was 11. Recently she has learned of additional family. Catherine has always known she was adopted at birth, but did not know anything of her biological parents. Discovering a clue, she traced them through Facebook! She has since discovered she has three half brothers and one half sister! Her birth parents never married one another, but married others and had children with them. Catherine says she is blessed to have met everyone in person. She is still in awe of the strong physical resemblance she and her father share. Her adopted father lives in Dayton, and oddly enough, her birth father lives near by him! After graduating, Catherine attended Mt. Hood Community College. Her major has changed and she is now focused on elementary education. Recently she has become engaged and will marry her high school sweetheart, Matthew Raczykowski on Dec. 20, 2011 on the family's Corbett property. Matthew is currently in the US Army and will be moving with Catherine to either Texas or North Carolina once married. They are both anxiously awaiting to hear, but are more excited to just be together once again, this time as husband and wife.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

NOT from the BBQ Family

Frank Weber says the spelling may be the same, but he is not related to anyone in the BBQ industry! Frank and Barb Weber moved out to Corbett in 1970 with their two sons. Still in the same home that they built themselves, the boys have grown and moved on. For years Frank was a research associate in surgery at OHSU on "Pill Hill" in Portland. Later he went through the paramedic program at OHSU and and became a nationally certified paramedic in 1972. Back in Corbett, Frank and Barb not only raised their sons, but also cattle, turkeys, pigs, sheep, chickens, goats and ducks. They even had a hatchery and made hay. Add to all that, a glass company named "Deer Garden Glass" that he still operates today on his property. Need a window of just about any size or sort? Call Frank! Whatever he does not have in stock, he can easily order for you. Frank loves the quiet peacefulness of Corbett as well as the people. He has been an active volunteer with the Corbett Fire Dept. since 1978 and just loves the camaraderie he shares with the crew. He also volunteers with our deputy Joe Graziano as a "Community Watch" member. Frank is on the board of IASTE, which is the International Assoc. of Stage Union Medic. He is employed to work as a paramedic on both TV and movie sets around the Portland area. Recently he has been on set for "Leverage," "Grimm Fairy Tales" and "Gone." When he is not working hard, he is playing hard. Franks loves ham radio as well as fishing. Given the lifestyle Corbett offers, he states that he is only leaving Corbett in a pine box!

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Al Martinez is an easy name to pronounce. Al's birth name is Aledaido, but he doesn't use it much since most folks have trouble with it. Al was born and raised in Chimayo, New Mexico with one half sister and three half brothers. At age 19 he moved to Portland with one of his brothers to try something new. Having a hard time finding work, he picked beans until he found employment at Hollywood Fred Meyer. In 1959 Al met his current wife, Brawley on a blind date. Al's brother's girlfriend set them up to double date with them. Al's brother never married Josie, but Josie and Brawley are still good friends more than 50 years later! When Al's father passed away, he went home to New Mexico to be with his mother, and then joined the Army for two years. All this time, Brawley and Al stayed in touch via letters and phone calls. When Al finished his two year commitment with the Army, he landed in Fort Lewis, WA. and called Brawley. They married soon after and settled in Portland. Bringing three children into the marriage, Brawley and Al went on to have two more of their own.  In 1978, Brawley and Al decided to leave Portland for life in the country. Driving into the Gorge many times on the weekends, one time they noticed a "For Sale" sign and decided to give the Realtor a call. The next thing they knew, they were living in Corbett with their two youngest kids enrolled in the school system. Al says their views are spectacular, but so is the wind! One time he agreed to store a 13 foot camping trailer for a friend on his property. Al warned him of the wind- his friend said NO wind could EVER blow over his trailer because it was so heavy and durable. A few weeks after Thanksgiving, Al heard a huge "thud."  A huge wind had literally picked up the trailer and tossed it on it's side! Being an electrician for nearly 20 years, Brawley has retired from Union Local 48. He said when Brawley was feeling better, they loved to travel the country with their kids. A favorite spot? Mt. Rushmore. These days, Al stays close to home with Brawley and the nine year old great grand daughter they are raising. When he finds a free moment he heads up to the Grange to offer a helping hand.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A True Italian

Carol Rice's roots go all the way back to having her grandparents and mother born in Italy. Carol has now visited six times, always staying with natives to get their "non-touristy" tours of the country. During one visit, Carol went to the equivalent of our city hall and had large books pulled down from shelves via a pulley system to search family history. They gave her copies of all records found for her family, which she now cherishes. Her "roots" may be in Italy, but her heart and husband are currently in Corbett! Carol was married at age 19 and birthed six children. Her twins passed shortly after birth. Living in Texas, she worked at the U.S. Post Office 30 years. Carol started her early shift at 2:30 am, finishing at 10 am! Over the years she was able to move from her clerk position up to a supervisory placement. Single after 35 years of marriage, Carol met Hank long distance. They kept in touch and things "blossomed." Saying goodbye to her four children and 3 grand kids, Carol married Hank and moved to Corbett! The beautiful green trees and quiet peacefulness are appealing, as she loves to hike, but Carol says she misses the Texas sunshine. She has become involved in the Corbett Grange and is now co-secretary. Hank and Carol also try to attend as many of the no cost grange dances held once a month as possible. Her co-secretary at the grange is John Eckberg, and both will be found this weekend at the benefit Blue Grass Show up at the grange. Donations are accepted at the door on Saturday at 6:30 pm, and monies will go towards the Al Kimbley scholarship fund for all the Corbett High graduates.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Finally Here!!!

Wanting a warm and supportive community for her family to settle in, Ann Chatterton has "finally" arrived in Corbett! Starting out life as one of seven children in Syracuse, New York, Ann has always been a hard worker. As a young adult, she earned two degrees with the help of scholarships and a strong work ethic.The first school she attended after high school was the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan, graduating in 1986. Ann had the opportunity to work in the Empire State Building for a men's wholesale firm, then moved to Miami and worked for the Elizabeth Arden Salon, pampering the cast of "Miami Vice" on a regular basis. Next came a move to San Diego with work at a publishing company. After 10 months, Ann headed back to the east coast with a new plan....beginning work on a nursing degree! A move to New Mexico followed with a specialization in kidney transplant. Moving to Portland later gave her opportunity to become a clinical manager at OHSU. Not one to slow done for too long, she met and married her husband, Paul in 1997. After a few years of living in Portland, the kids came along. Zoe is now ten, and Zach is eight. July 1, 2011 the Chatterton's moved into Corbett. Having traveled all over the U.S. and abroad, Ann really appreciates all the diversity found in Corbett. She is fascinated with the people she has met so far. Her favorite part of their home/property is the barn. The family inherited two goats from the previous owners, and Ann says she easily loses track of time when she is with them. There is also an inherited barn cat, Mandy who is 16 years old. Now a stay at home mom, Ann cannot wait to start helping out with the Corbett 4H program that her kids have become involved with. Currently she volunteers at the school two hours a week with math, and would like to help in other areas as well. Maybe as a nurse on a field trip or using her medical background to help others through a different channel.... Her mind continues to stay open all the many possibilities!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Involvement is Key

One of four kids, Victoria "Tori" Purvine grew up wanting to be "involved." Wearing a back brace for three years in junior high and part of high school did not seem to slow her down much. Meeting her current husband in Lincoln City in 1997, she and her two sons moved with Gary Purvine to Corbett in 1999. Getting married in 2001, she has loved living in a very rural area of Corbett where she gets to see lots of snow in the winter months. Her and Gary own several rentals in the area and have become good friends with their renters/neighbors, gathering for food and fellowship as well as looking out for one another. Tori has 16 chickens, 2 rabbits, 2 dogs and 2 cats. She also quilts in her free time and is thinking about teaching a quilting class for women in our community this winter. Son Morgan graduated from Corbett High in 2010 and is applying for the Navy reserves. Max is currently a junior at Corbett, and is thinking about getting back on the wrestling team after breaking his knee during the season two years ago. Always one to be involved, both Tori and Gary earned a $1,000 stadium upkeep for the Jeff Lucas Memorial Stadium through the Case Community Challenge. They have also done a great deal of outdoor work at the school during the community work days, helped with National Night Out, chaperoned numerous field trips at the school, helped out with the wrestling team driving, and attend safety meetings for the community once a month at the fire hall. As if that were not enough, Tori recently ran for and won a spot on the school board. No surprise, she is wanting to spread her passion for involvement to others. She says she would love nothing more than to see the community get more and more involved at the schools in Corbett, continuing the strong success so many are currently a part of.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Traveling the U.S.A. in a Motor Home

Mary Eccleston met the current love of her life in 2001... online. She is not the least bit shy in saying that she and Bill Marble were sharing emails for a few weeks before meeting in person for dinner. In 2002 Mary moved to Corbett to be with Bill and has been here ever since! Growing up on a farm in Montana, she felt comfortable in Corbett right from the beginning. As a mother of four and a grandmother to seven, she has two adult children living locally, and two are out of state. Although Mary is retired from 20 years as a waitress and then 20 years as a drug and alcohol treatment counselor, she still helps Bill with his business. As an engineer, Bill makes the machines that put "buttons" on coffee bags that "de-gas" the coffee. Her and Bill have been in all 49 states in their motor home (they are planning to FLY to Hawaii!) to be a part of vendor shows. When back at home, they both enjoy old cars. They have eight currently in storage on their property, including a 1935 Plymouth and a 1988 Plymouth police car she received as a Valentine's gift from Bill! Mary also enjoys doing machine embroidery to create quilts and ornaments, as well as other gift items. Once a week she helps cook lunch for the seniors in our community with the Helping Hands program, and loves talking with  the community members over a hot cooked meal. Back at the house, a favorite is the large brick fireplace that heats the entire home from its angled position in the living room. A little embroidery and a cozy fire makes for a great evening in Corbett this winter!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Growing Potatoes and Milking Cows

When Tom Klinski was born in 1930, he came home to Corbett and has only left once- for two years he served in the Korean War. Having two sisters, it was Tom and his father who worked long hours milking their 30 dairy cows on the family farm. The family also grew potatoes literally ALL over Corbett. The entire area of NE 365th Ave. was farm land and they rented the acreage for their potato farming as well as other areas in Corbett. During WWII there were few young men in the area, so Tom says the large home across the Stark Street Bridge was a camp for nearly 500 Hispanic boys and men. They would be picked up each morning by several Corbett farmers to help with farm chores, and returned to their camp in the evenings. Tom's family also grew daffodils, Dutch Iris and tulips, selling and shipping the bulbs all over the country! In 1948, Tom graduated from Corbett High. He was the senior class president, and had played both basketball and baseball all through school. At the time, those were the only sports available for the boys! In 1955, Tom met a beautiful young woman at church named Delta, and they married soon after. She was the secretary at Corbett Grade School for 27 years! Together, the Klinski's had three children, and just two years ago, Tom lost his only son to a heart attack at age 50. Delta had passed earlier in 2006 from cancer. Currently, his two daughters live in the general area and have given him two grandchildren. Tom is still in the "cow business" but has switched from dairy to beef production. There was "too much milk" back in 1986 and so he "bid out" to the government and made a change in cows. He also started driving a school bus for Corbett, driving from 1986-2002. When he was in the war, he had won an award for driving over 23,000 miles with any accidents! Now Tom is involved as a volunteer with "Meals on Wheels," delivering meals in the Corbett area, as well as volunteering at the Corbett Grange. Tom said he was always tempted to move to Canby because of Corbett's wind, but says he is glad he never did!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Wake Up Call

Living in Corbett since age 3, Laura Kimes has always considered Corbett her home. Laura was in the first kindergarten class to start at the "new" grade school in 1996. Both Laura and her sister were raised solely by their father, who kept them both very involved with a variety of activities. Playing soccer since age 8, being involved in Girl Scouts, CCT plays, and playing the alto saxophone in the band kept Laura busy! In high school, everything came to a confusing halt. Laura freely speaks of the dark depression she faced. One day feeling low, Laura skipped class and drove her dad's brand new car up to Larch Mountain to "get away". Unexpectedly, it started snowing and Laura was alone. As she was driving back down the mountain, she hydroplaned and crashed off the road. Miraculously, she walked away without a scratch. NOT true of the car! The accident was a wake up call. Laura says that several teachers at Corbett had a huge impact on her recovery, as she knew they truly cared about her. Today Laura has made huge strides in her relationships with others as well as made positive choices for her future. Currently she is enrolled as a student at the Univ. of Oregon and has been accepted into the architecture program, one of the top 15 in the country! She also has returned to her love of drawing, painting, doing needlework and also hopes to soon pick up her saxophone again. With so much to look forward to, Laura speaks joyfully of the road that lies ahead!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Need a Babysitter?

Hannah Grey is a 14 year old freshman at Corbett High this year. Living in Corbett since her folks brought her home from the hospital, she is the youngest of three kids. Older brother Alex just graduated from Willamette University and is currently spending a year in Japan before attending grad school. Brother Alex is a freshman this year at OSU. Until she is a bit older and gets a job with a paycheck, she content to babysit for her spending money. Hannah is not one to sit still for too long. She currently is playing on the girl's high school soccer team and says the team is a close knit group that enjoys their time together. Last year was her first year of soccer and she won the "Most Improved" award on the team! Since age 7, Hannah has also been riding horses, starting with Laurie James and now riding with Sherry Grey, her aunt. Her favorite horse to ride is one named "Mariposa." She has a white lab dog named Isabelle and her cat is named Silly. She says the cat got "dropped off" on the road by someone, so her family provided a loving new home! One day Hannah is hoping to go to school and become a veterinarian. Also musical, she has taken piano lessons for 3 years and is currently playing the clarinet in the band at school. She has also had roles in 3 CCT plays in Corbett. Growing up in Corbett has provided opportunity to have plenty of space to roam and play as well as develop close childhood friends like Vanessa Van Horn, who has been her best friend as long as she can remember! When a free moment comes, Hannah can be found on the computer. Hannah loves to write and create. She often goes to websites where she can interact with others in creating characters and writing stories. With such a wonderful childhood in Corbett, she may never run out of adventures to write about!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Need a Beverage?

Beer, wine, lemonade, soda pop, water, or juice, Robert tracks the beverages all over the Portland area. Robert Giard works for Columbia Distributing on Swan Island and deals with literally hundreds of thousands of beverages on a weekly basis. After eight years in the U.S. Marine Corp., Robert moved from Kentucky back to the Portland area to be near family. He is one of five children, and most all of his family are in the area. Meeting his wife Kemmie while drinking a beverage in Troutdale, the two hit it off and were married shortly thereafter. Knowing they both wanted to raise a family in a rural setting with great schools, they chose Corbett, and made the move in August, 2007. Kemmie has her master's degree in teaching and hopes to one day teach in Corbett. Currently, her hands are full with sons Anthony, nearly 4 and twins Callen and Noah who are 10 months old. Robert is a hands on guy that has really enjoys making changes to both their home and property. He feels they are "far enough and yet also close enough" to the big city of Portland and all its amenities. His said his neighbors have been kind and helpful since day one and he really likes that they all look out for one another. This year Anthony started preschool at Corbett, its first year of the program. Robert says Anthony loves being there! Robert looks forward to all his boys being in school and being very involved. He and Kemmie both want to be very supportive as the boys grow up in the wonderful community that they both talked about moving to long before the kids arrived on the scene!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Never a Dull Moment!

Henry Hammel has been in Corbett with his family since his folks brought him home from the hospital. Henry is the youngest of two boys and has attended Corbett schools since since kindergarten. Now a senior, he is looking to graduate in the spring and then attend college. Where might he go? "No idea" he says with a laugh as he talks about his brother Matt being enrolled at Vassar in New York and yet now in a foreign country, studying abroad for a semester. Many teachers and coaches have had a big impact on Henry over the years and he appreciates the relationships he has been able to build. He is especially thankful for Mr. Bob Dunton who has been both a mentor and friend. Henry has always been busy. With several years of Cub and Boy Scouts, several years in Corbett Children's Theater, playing the bassoon in the band from grade 5-11, and playing soccer since kindergarten, Henry also had time to be in a band called "Sanitarium." Playing with several of his friends, Henry was the lead singer for all three years they were together. Having fun is a priority for Henry and he appreciates the chance to have grown up in Corbett with lots of space to roam and have plenty of animals, including horses. What is on his mind at the moment? Going to the state playoff in soccer this year- "Come watch us play and WIN!" he says with a grin.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Mother to Many!

In her 81 years of life, Ethel Smith has given birth to four children, and yet has been a mother figure for a total of 12 children! Ethel's first husband passed when her youngest of four was just five years old. Ethel married George Rawley who was widowed and had two children of his own. George and Ethel moved to Corbett in 1966 and bought 80 acres of land. It was their original intent to subdivide and make eight 10 acre parcels to sell. They grew so fond of the beautiful land that they decided to keep it all! Originally they clear cut the thousands of fir trees on their land, but Ethel says that was a mistake. Now they just "thin" the trees to make for bigger and healthier trees. Over the years Ethel and George were heavily involved in the Corbett Grange, with George being the Grange Master. By driving around and visiting folks, they recruited 125 new members one year! Together with their kids, they raised calves, horses, chickens, goats, peacocks and chows. In 1968 George built the family's museum, right on the property. Over forty years later, folks are STILL talking about the enormous structure that still has just about anything and everything you can think of on display in it! George passed away and Ethel married her current husband, Charlie Smith who had three children. Before Charlie's wife died, she had been friends with Ethel for over 20 years. Currently Ethel attends church at Bridal Veil Community Church on Lucas Road. For over 10 years she had a bible study and potluck in her home and neighbors from all over gathered on Tuesdays. Today Ethel still volunteers at the Grange and can be seen collecting money at the doorway for the "Helping Hands" program on Mondays. Ethel smiles broadly when she states that her will says the family acreage will be divided among her children and can never be sold once she passes.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Corbett Dirt

One of the top things Roberta "Birdy" Pulliam likes most about Corbett is the dirt. No kidding! Birdy says the soil here is unbelievable for growing her onions, peppers, tomatoes and cilantro for all her homemade salsa. Moving here just six years ago, Jeff and Birdy live in a home that dates back to at least 1928- maybe even further. The date on the electrical box says 1928 and no one seems to have any records from before that. Jeff's grandparents bought and lived in the home, then Jeff's parent's raised him in the home on the Columbia River. Birdy met Jeff when she was divorced and had four children, living in Gresham. Once married, they lived in her home in town for 5 years then decided to buy the Corbett home and "keep it in the family." The home needed some major TLC, but Birdy and Jeff decided they were up for the challenge. Enrolling her youngest sons in the Corbett schools, Birdy became involved volunteering with their school sports and activities. She herself had gone back to school after the divorce and got both her bachelor's and master's degree in education, becoming an elementary teacher. Jeff and Birdy are now "empty nesters" and have three grandchildren. They have poured themselves into their home and yard, making both look like they belong in a magazine! Birdy loves her teaching career, time spent with Jeff and her adult kids and grand kids, working out in her vegetable and flower gardens, and also traveling. Birdy has gone with her sisters to more than 10 different countries and thinks Australia is the most interesting so far. She enjoys the renewed friendships with her two sisters and appreciates the deep friendships they share. With all her travels, does she think about relocating? "No. Whose dirt can compare?!"

Saturday, August 27, 2011

It All Started With a Blind Date!

It was when Kathleen Freund was enrolled at Jefferson High School in Portland that she met her husband of nearly 50 years. Malcolm and Kathie went to a drive-in movie and then to Rocky Butte on a blind date with another couple. Kathie says they talked nonstop, and she agreed to a second date on New Year's Eve. When Malcolm brought her home at 4 am, her dad slammed the door in his face and then called the next day to have him come over for a "visit." Things went a lot better after that, and Malcolm proposed on Feb. 22, 1963. They married just 6 months later in Portland. Malcolm is four years older than Kathie, and after marrying, they headed to Idaho so he could finish his degree in engineering at the Univ. Idaho. In 1966 Kathie and Malcolm were expecting their first child, and decided to move back to Portland. Looking all over for property, they found a nice 5 acre piece in Corbett and put their newly purchased mobile home on the land. Raymond Smith was the first person they met in Corbett, as he offered to help them take down some trees. Raising their two sons Myron and Harold in Corbett, Kathie was active over the years with the Parent Advisory Committee and all the boy's sports activities, including ice hockey outside of school.  Kathie was the bingo caller for 13 years for the Portland Amateur Hockey Assoc. Now the grandmother of two, her sons live in Las Vegas and Iowa. Malcolm retired from a career at BPA, and they both continue to be active in the community, still living in their same home. Kathie attends the monthly Women's Teas at the grange, is on the Citizen's Patrol, and is involved with NERT. Neighbors helping neighbors is what Kathie appreciates most about Corbett. Over the years she has had many experiences where this has proven true. She, Malcolm and their new baby once moved in with neighbors because all power was out, and they has no wood stove to stay warm. TOGETHER they stayed safe, warm, dry and happy!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Coach Lovitt is Here to Play.....and WIN!!

There is a new name in town, and most folks already love it. Coach Lovitt that is. Lance Lovitt moved to Corbett from LaGrande, Oregon just two short weeks ago, bringing wife Wendy and their four children. Lincoln is 7 years old, Amber is 6, Callie 3 and baby Teah is just 4 months old. Lance grew up on a farm and was the youngest of four children. His folks bought a local farm supply/grocery store when he was in 4th grade, so he helped out there as well as at home with the 100 head of hog and 70 beef cattle. After 13 years of store ownership, Lance's dad changed paths to become a teacher and coach. Lance himself was a successful player, going on to play football his first year of college in CA. Getting married to Wendy in 1993, he had taken a break from school to help his dad coach. In 1995, he went back to school and got his degree in teaching, and Wendy got her degree in nursing. It was always a dream for Lance to be in Corbett. He and Wendy wanted their kids to have a small town childhood experience that offered excellent education and a friendly community. He feels it is a blessing to be the new football coach, and he has already brought on 5 new coaches to assist with the 28 boys that are currently turning out for the season. Coach Lovitt is all about "The Golden Rule" and expects his players to get on board with that. He has already hit the ground running and has big plans for a successful program that will only grow and get stronger/ better each year, attracting boys from even Reynolds and Gresham to come play for Corbett! What does the coach do when he is not with his family or thinking about football? Lance loves to play golf, camp, fish, go boating, and play music. Country music is what he is most fond of, and he plays the acoustic guitar, mandolin, fiddle and banjo. He also plans to start getting his kids interested in playing the piano. He was once part of a successful local band, and now may just start another within his own family!

The Big Bear of Corbett

Phil DuFresne has always been a man of faith. Back in the 70's, "Big Bear" was a long haul truck driver with a wife and two kids. One day he was tying down his load and got snapped in the eye with his rubber rope. He was blinded in his right eye as a result. Time for a career change. In 1979, Bear and wife Judy purchased the market in Springdale from Ellis "Fox" Wheeler and his wife, June. They believed that Corbett would be a wonderful place to raise their family and they had faith the purchase of the store would provide a new opportunity for them. Being a youth pastor earlier in his life at New Hope Community Church, he was given the nickname "Big Bear" and it stuck. He brought the name with him to Corbett. Raising his son Vince and daughter Michelle in Corbett was wonderful, and Bear has appreciated seeing three generations of families pass before him before retiring from the store in 2009. He has three grand kids and continues his acts of service in the community. Over the years he has been a volunteer firefighter, supported the youth with their sports programs, sponsored the pumpkin patch for all the kindergartners and has been a ring leader for putting together the July 4th activities. Currently Bear is leading a bible study each Wednesday evening at Bridal Veil Church on Lucas Road. They are studying the book of 1 John, and Bear says he is passionate about sharing the love of Jesus with others. He feels that no one deserves to die alone, and he has met with numerous folks in their last days to be at their side and provide support and guidance. In his free time, Bear loves to do both wood burning and carving as well as build model trucks and cars. Leave Corbett anytime soon? "Never."

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Living the Dream Together

Dr. Sonja Straub is from Switzerland, and yet she met her current husband Namon Nixon in Alaska! Namon is actually from Detroit, but was in Alaska working when the two first saw one another. Just how did the married couple end up in Corbett, Oregon?! Fate. Each had been thinking about where to "settle" and by different methods, both came up with Corbett! Both have an educational background in psychology, and Sonja had her office at home in NW Portland nearly four years ago before moving to Corbett. Still working from home in Corbett, she also has an office in Portland that she goes to a few days a week. Namon is now home full time on their property with all 90 (yes, NINETY!) animals that they share. Sonja has a 25 year old daughter in CA., and Namon has a 28 year old son in Michigan, but they are also the proud parents of donkeys, sheep, goats, turkeys, dogs, cats, chickens, and a peacock named Harry! Both Sonja and Namon are passionate about both nature and animals. They are enjoying the home and property so much that they are gracious to invite others to share in the peaceful and beautiful surroundings. Sonja's nephew from Switzerland just came for four weeks to stay with them, and they also have 56 sponsored children they have relationships with through the "I Have a Dream, Oregon" program that builds relationships with kids at risk from 3rd grade until their high school graduation. They then support their journey to college. Namon says the kids love to visit and enjoy the very "simple and quiet" flow of things on their farm. Potlucks are one way the two have met their neighbors, and they both love the friendly style of the Corbett folks. Sounds like they won't be moving away any time soon!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Once a Stripper

Currently Kevin Bates and his family are living in one of the oldest homes in Corbett. His great grandparents homesteaded here from Kansas with the Bell family, who are relatives and live next door! They each built a home and actually chose where they would build by the toss of a coin! Kevin has many wonderful memories of living in Corbett his entire childhood. He picked berries for Elmer Larsen on Stevens Road from age 8-13 and said Elmer would pick up all the kids each morning and was kind yet stern. One time a rambunctious boy got a bucket full of squished berries put right on the top of his head by Elmer! Kevin played basketball and ran track and cross country as a youth, going on to Mt. Hood Community College to continue his running. After running competitively for 2 years at Mt. Hood, Kevin transferred to Portland State University, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Fine Art. This was a change from his original intent of an engineering degree. After failing a flight physical due to a hearing loss, he followed a different passion. While attending school, Kevin was a "stripper" for a printing company, stripping negatives for the printing press! Another job was working at "The Cheerful Tortoise." It was here that Kevin met Ginger, his wife since 1991. Together they have two sons, Austin 19 and Dallas 16. Kevin has helped coach both his son's basketball and baseball teams and loves being a part of the community and raising his family in the Bate's family home. On the front of the home is a post with his father's hand print as a 4 month old and in the barn are markings from family member's from the 1930's! When not busy with family, work and church activities, Kevin loves to perform as a magician. Since age 8 , Kevin has been practicing and performing for parties and events. Favorite act? "Coins Across."

Monday, August 8, 2011

NOT making a move anytime soon!

Except for his years away for college, Jared Hargens has spent his entire life growing up on O'Regan Road in Corbett. For the first five years, Jared lived in a home that is now a rental property for his family. Currently, he is living in the home his parents raised him and his sister Kim in. He is working on making this his permanent home since his folks have built another place to live just up the road! Attending Corbett schools K-12, Jared was involved with soccer, football and basketball. He also was the senior class president and the salutatorian of his graduating class. Jared says his dad was a huge influence on his life, as he shadowed him just about everywhere he went. His dad taught him how to fish, hunt, build, repair and overall, work hard! Jared attended Oregon State Univ. for four years, then went on to get his master's degree in business engineering. He is currently a project manager for his dad's excavation company. He says his "office" is actually the front seat of his truck, as he spends a great deal of time there! He oversees job sites and makes sure all is running smoothly. With a career that requires a great deal of mental energy, he says coming home to Corbett is a gift. He has loved growing up around extended family and appreciates that most are still around. He also appreciates the incredible view he has from his home, which extends from Portland to Mt. Hood. Although living on acreage is an incredible amount of work, he says he is used to it and enjoys it. As for someone to share this joy with, a twinkle comes into his eye as he talks about his current girlfriend Chelsey who also grew up in Corbett and understands the "magic" of living in the community.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Kurkinen Comes Home

Philip is the fifth of seven boys raised in Corbett by Dale and Sally Kurkinen. Now married to Megan and the father of AnnaBelle, Philip is living in a wonderful "new" home in Corbett. Mrs. Bonnie Lilly was Philip's first teacher at Corbett Grade School, and years later, Megan would student teach just across the hall from Mrs. Lilly! Being a trumpet player, homecoming king and track star who went to State twice in high school, Philip longed to get back to his "roots" after recently completing his master's degree. Purchasing their home/acreage in February was a dream come true. Megan was not raised in the country and really appreciates the sound of wildlife rather than traffic. Originally they had intended to make several changes to the home and yet once moved in, realized they loved it just the way it was! They feel "safe, quiet and settled" in the home and community. Currently they are volunteering on Saturdays at the Grange Hall with the "Helping Hands" food program. They both look forward to raising their daughter in Corbett, and are currently hosting a foreign exchange student from Switzerland for four weeks in their home. Also, Megan's folks are currently living with them as well! Both Philip and Megan feel they have a lot of blessings to share and love having a home available to share. Currently both are working in the field of education and enjoy being around children. Actually, Megan was just a mere 5 years old when she met Philip at church with his family. The rest, shall we say, is history!

Monday, August 1, 2011

It has been fifteen years since Kim Deibert made the move to Corbett. He came with his young family back in 1996 to enjoy the lifestyle he came to know from working on his dad's Corbett farm since 1993. For eleven years now Kim has been with the love of his life, Cheryl Lawwill and her two kids, making it a household with four kids, all just one year apart! Kim's boys will be a junior and senior at Corbett High this fall, while Cheryl's twins will both be seniors. Kim really loves the privacy of the large acreage he and Cheryl are on, but now wishes it was a smaller parcel since the kids no longer have as much time to help with all the upkeep! Currently Kim continues with home remodel and renovation work for his father as well as many others in the Corbett community. He also works as a substitute bus driver for the Corbett schools, driving kids to and from school as well as sporting events. He says he really enjoys the time with the kids and appreciates that he is always given a high school student to sit in the front and help guide him on the many different pick up and drop off spots since Corbett has no set bus stops for groups of kids, like in the suburbs. Kim says he would like to drive full time, but has to wait for someone to retire first! Kim has been very involved with the community over the years by volunteering extensively at the schools, coaching baseball, driving the buses, and leaving his "print" on many homes and buildings in the area with his renovation work. The home he currently lives in was half built when he bought it and he was able to finish it with all his own personal touches. The "touches" include many hunting trophies mounted on the walls. He says the best one of all is the bull elk he shot on his dad's Corbett property!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Heading into the U.S. Army

Moving into Corbett for the first time in 1992, Jacob Paul was just a baby. His parents rented the home across from the Corbett Community Church on Mershon Road and the Scenic Highway. Eventually purchasing the home located between the Springdale Tavern and the Springdale Bible Church, Jacob has many fond memories of growing up with the Schaaf and Tymoshuk boys, playing in the woods and down by the creek. He loved the fact everyone felt like "brothers." Jacob's family moved from the community for job demands, but his family eventually came back, knowing Corbett was indeed "home" for Jacob and his younger brother and sister. Jacob played soccer for many, many years and his dad was the coach at Corbett High during his sophomore, junior and senior years. Jacob also worked at Big Bear's Market for a time as a cashier. He is currently working  at Crestview Manor Conference Center off the Scenic Highway as a "lead." Jacob oversees and helps with set-up, clean-up and guest services. Soon employment will be changing for him- Jacob will begin his five year career with the U.S. Army beginning on August 29, 2011. Jacob will be headed to Fort Jackson, South Carolina. He sees this as an incredible opportunity to serve his country as well as get the college education he so yearns for. Having a strong passion for math, Jacob says Mr. Larry Swanson, his high school math teacher put a fire under his feet to love and appreciate every aspect of mathematics. This is just what Jacob is hoping to get his degree in in the future. One day, his dream is to return to the Corbett area, purchasing a home for himself and a future family of his own!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Friends Help Friends Move into Corbett.....

"Real" friends will help tell their friends about PARADISE, I mean Corbett. This 3,184 sq. ft. home is 3 levels and has 3 bed/2.5 baths. It is located on 10.15 acres with incredible views from all three back decks. There is a 36X48 outbuilding with a carport, apple and cherry trees, blueberries, pasture, trails, creek, ooodles of privacy, possible marketable timber, and SOOOO much more! $399K buys it ALL!


The year George's mother came to teach at Corbett High, the school burned down. It was 1922 and the high school had to move to the Grange Hall for a year. George's father worked at Menucha as the manager/caretaker/gardener of the estate. George and Joy Perry marrried Dec. 25, 1925 after meeting at Corbett Christian Church. George was their first born son and the sixth George in line, with another brother to follow three years later. George's brother was handicapped and passed at age 10. George was practically raised at Menucha, the retreat and conference center located on the Scenic Hwy. Julius Meier purchased the land in 1914 and built a spectacular log home on the site. By the mid 1920's the place had been invaded with carpenter ants and had to be destrayed. The current estate was then built. George's family was then living in what is now the building where the offices are located. Julius had a "strong" Jewish mother who named the estate Menucha. When she passed, both daughters of Julius renamed the summer home for the family "Men-u-shay" as it was known for decades until the family sold in 1950. George remembers growing up with "a foot in two different worlds" as he spent time with Julius Meier, governor of Oregon from 1930-1934 and all his guests, including President Roosevelt and Herbert Hoover. George's parents eventually purchased a home on Chamberlain Road where he and wife Virginia raised their six children and still live today, living in a newer home on the land while his son, George the seventh and family live in the original home. George graduated from Corbett High in 1946, graduated from Univ. of Oregon in 1950, and then went on to get his master's degree at UO as well. George was a teacher, like his mother. He taught at Gresham High from 1952-1983, teaching math and science. Today George and Virginia have six grandchildren and love living on the southern most point of the Columbia River, seeing all the way from the 205 Bridge to Multnomah Falls! On occassion, George is asked to come to the Vista House to speak to folks from literally all over the world about the Corbett area giving history facts as well. Retired from teaching, but only at the school.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Fiddlehead Farmers Grow Chemical & Pesticide Free in Corbett

Both growing up in California and attending Humboldt State University together, Katie Coppoletta and Rowan Steele are soon to be getting married. Dating six years, they waited for just for the "right" place to marry. This October they will join their lives forever on their new family farm in Corbett. Katie and Rowan met in Mexico while doing a summer study with Humboldt. Both attended the school, but had never met prior. They have been together ever since. Both having graduated, they traveled all over the world for a year. They even backpacked in Patagonia for two months, staying in the southern most city in the world! Rowan went on to get his master's degree in Urban and Regional Planning at PSU. He is now working in Portland, teaching classes about healthy watersheds, employed by both PSU and the City of Portland. Katie and Rowan live with Katie's parents who recently moved up from CA. themselves to purchase a home and acreage to share with Katie and Rowan. Katie works full-time in the fields while Rowan steps in as much as possible when he is not working in the city. Together they sell their produce each Sunday at the Fiddlehead Farm stand at the Montavilla Produce Market on 76th and Stark from 10-2 pm. The season lasts 22 weeks, and next year two friends will join in the efforts to share equipment, tools and other resources. Both feel strongly about small scale agriculture and food production, believing both are a basis for so much. They say farming is not an occupation, as much as it is a way of life- connecting to the earth we are so blessed to live on.

He is a Dumballer

When Tim Foertsch moved to Corbett six years ago, it was his desire to be near extended family and also give his daughters the best education he could. Tim and wife Cary have enjoyed the small town atmosphere so much that they recently moved from one home to another within Corbett! A favorite detail Tim enjoys about the new home/property is the fact his girls Trinity, age 8 and Chassidy, age 7 now have plenty of space to run and play on their acreage. In fact, they have so much land, they are now getting some baby goats to start helping them with all the mowing! Being an artist when not at his day job, Tim recently turned a donated minivan into a "dogmobile" for "Dumball," a rolling scavenger hunt that will take him to Las Vegas this year. The event is to raise money for charities and this is his 4th year to be involved with about 30 others. The dogmobile will be auctioned off and sold. Tim screwed brown carpet to the entire exterior and even created "legs" that are screwed to the sides! Tim met up with neighbor Chris Tymoschuk a few years back and was inspired to explore his art a bit further. He is now involved with the yearly "Cracked Pots" show at the Edgefield with Cary's brother, creating art from recycled goods. Tim also stays busy volunteering for the Corbett Citizen's Patrol. Deputy Joe Graziano and others in our area monitor vandalism in the tourist areas of the Gorge. Having been busy with the recent move, Tim is looking forward to getting back to family karate lessons in Corbett with Mr. Russell. He appreciates the fact it is something they can all do and enjoy together. See a furry van driving around Corbett in the next few weeks that looks like a dog? No alarm, it is just Tim.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Generational Corbett Home

Just recently, Lisa Faught and her family moved into her grandparent's Corbett home that she well remembers from her childhood. This is the same home her father Kenneth and Uncle Larry were raised in. Husband Lee and son Emerson made the move with Lisa in April 2011 and are still getting settled into the home filled with her grandparent's precious memories. Being a stay at home mom, Lisa is really appreciating the fresh smells and beauty of the natural setting they are in, loving the sound of the birds. One thing she didn't get too excited over was the little bear she spotted on the property! She said she is no longer keeping a compost pile outside! Lisa loves to cook and try new recipes. She says it has been a joy to find her grandmother's recipes in the home. Lisa lived all over the world as a child since her father was a geologist, working on soils in all kinds of locations! Visiting her grandparents was always a treat for her. She loves the fact one of very favorite trees to sit under as a child is still on the property. Her grandfather Lewis was a woodworker, making dulcimer instruments as well as doing remodeling around the home. When Lisa's father was growing up in the home, there was a time they only had an outhouse to use! Many remnants of his work are still seen in the home and are also stored in the basement. Having met her husband while in college at Univ. of Calif. Santa Cruz in CA, she is happy to be supporting his career as an instructor at the Art Institute of Portland, and raising the next generation in Corbett!

Remodeled Home Available in the Corbett School District!

This 1938 home has been completely remodeled and boasts new vinyl windows, roof, carpet, flooring and kitchen. Nearly 1,000 sq. ft., it sits on 1.25 acres and is located on the Scenic Hwy. just across from Dabney Park. A concrete foundation outbuilding with loft is located on the property as well as a possible carport in back of the home. This is a MUST SEE at $159,900! Beautiful and private setting, clean and move-in ready. #971-221-9655.