Tuesday, February 19, 2013
When Bill Marble was just six months old, he made his first trek to Corbett to visit his grandparents on their farm. This became an annual event, as he continued with his parents and sister to come each summer and sometimes during the Chrismas holidays from their home in California. Bill learned many, many lessons in life on the farm. The family would leave for Corbett the day school got out and return to CA the day before school began again. Once graduated from high school, Bill attended a junior college and then went on to Oregon State University, graduating in 1968. Getting a degree in Manufacturing Engineering, Bill gained some work experience after his schooling and then went on to become one of the first ever engineers to get a Manufacturing Engineer's license. This was a new area of licensing back in 1970. Along the way, Bill married and he and his wife had both a son and a daughter. He also helped raise a stepdaughter. After the marriage ended, Bill was remarried for six years to Sherrill, who passed away from breast cancer in 1999. Currently he has found love and companionship with Mary, whom he met in Portland several years ago. His adult children and four grandchildren all live locally and his sister lives in Corbett as well. He is surrounded in Corbett by cousins and other extended family. Bill actually designed and built the home he currently lives in and has his business there as well. He has never had a mortgage and loves the location, but has had to come up against some varied obstacles along the way with Multnomah County. Bill has used his past experiences and education to actually make some major progress with changing regulations for our area. He has challenged and won several issues with the county over the years. Today he finds peace and contentment with Mary and the lifestyle his business provides. At "Marble Manor" (his business) he designs, manufactures, installs and services the machinery that puts valves on coffee bags. He is the only independent operator in the Americas and does business with companies and clients internationally. Many, many folks from all over the world have been to his Corbett home and he and Mary travel across the U.S. in their large motor home to meet with clients as well. Despite having to endure some recent eye surgery, one could say, he is truly "living the dream!"
Friday, February 15, 2013
Although Vivian Kirkham was born in Crane, Oregon, her family left when she was only two years of age. Her mother was from the Davis family, and yearned to be back with her family in Corbett. Cousins with Woody Davis, Vivian grew up in Corbett attending the local schools until she was a sophomore in high school. Local farmers were hiring Hispanic men from Viking Park (now a residence across the street from The Riverview Restaurant) to work on the Corbett farms. Most of the local boys and men were simply "gone" as a result of WWII. The workers lived at Viking Park and often put on shows for the community for entertainment. One night when Vivian was just 15 years old, she saw and heard Jesus Everardo Castenada de Gomez, sing. A short time later she accepted the marriage proposal of Everardo and left high school to get married. Together they had seven children and now there are 13 grandchildren and six great grandchildren to enjoy! They raised their children to work on the farms cutting cabbage, picking berries, raising bulbs, and picking up potatoes just as Vivian had done as a child. Vivian took a job working for a local man who owned a manufacturing company. Vivian was always impressed with how kind Mr. Kirkham was with all his employees. When Everardo (who was seven years older than Vivian) was in his 40's, he went back to Mexico to research his heritage. He died in Mexico of a heart attack, leaving Vivian to raise their seven children with the help of her family. The boys were all very athletic and played sports, while the girls enjoyed cheerleading at the school. Later, Vivian went to work as both a nurse's aide and then a medical aide at The Edgefield Manor, a care facility that is now a hotel, restaurant and event venue on Halsey St. in Troutdale. A short time ago, son Mark was being honored at the Corbett annual Red and Black Dinner/Auction. He literally ran into Marion Kirkham, his mom's previous employeer and asked if he would go say hello to his mother sitting at another table. Vivian was so happy to see Marion after numerous years, she gave him a warm hug and a smile. Nine months later they married in front of all their children and family members at Vivian's daughter's home. Growing up on Chamberlain Road and then moving to Hurt Road, Vivian is happy to continue life in Corbett with Marion. The views they enjoy is one of Vivian's favorite things about the home. She also continues to love being in relationship with so many local folks that she has known her entire life. She loves to say fit with Marion by walking and hiking as well as traveling. A favorite trip was going to the Czech Republic and being in a parade with her new husband!