In Memoriam July 2020

Robert R. Lowry
September 28, 1923 – May 8, 2020

Robert R. Lowry entered into this world on September 28, 1923 and departed on May 8, 2020 due to complication from Alzheimer’s. Bob was born at home on the family farm near Craigmont, Idaho to William Lowry and Mona Ward- Lowry.

Bob’s grandfather had come to America as a boy with his family from Northern Ireland in 1870. Before coming to Idaho the Lowry’s had settled in Missouri. Bob had two siblings, Loretta and Dave. Farm life wasn’t easy, but Bob greatly enjoyed talking about growing up on the farm. He often liked telling family how he was old enough to remember going to silent films as a young boy, and that when he started working on the farm he was paid $1.50 a day, which he liked to remind people that was a good wage at the time. They farmed with horses until Bob was a teenager, and the family grew wheat, barley, and oats, and raised hogs. The farm didn’t get electricity until Bob was a junior in high school (1939}, thanks to the Rural Electrification Act under President Franklin Roosevelt.

Shortly after his high school graduation, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor and World War II began for America. Bob joined the Navy and served as a Pharmacist’s Mate (today called a Hospital Corpsman). He was stationed in the South Pacific during the war on Bougainville, Biak, and Owi, and towards the end of the war in the Philippines on Samar. He was devastated to find out near the end of the war that his first cousin Loren Mitchell had been killed in the Battle of Okinawa. Bob was very close to his cousins Loren and Margaret who grew up nearby the Lowry’s.

After the war, Bob attended the University of Idaho and met Barbara Dayton on a blind date. They married in 1947 and both graduated from college in 1948. Bob and Barb then moved to Albany in 1948, where Bob took a job with the Charles H. Lilly Seed Company. During the Korean War, Bob was called back to service, where he served on a Net Tender ship. He relayed that one of the most terrifying experiences of his life occurred during the Korean Conflict when the ship went through a typhoon in East Asian waters. In 1967, Bob and two farmers, Willard McLagan and HG Olsen, started Willamette Seed and Grain Company. Bob served as President and General Manager for Willamette Seed for 31 years until it was sold in 1998. Bob was a past president of the Oregon Seed Trade Association and worked throughout the years to promote the seed industry in various organizations in Oregon and the U.S.

Bob was a longtime member of the United Presbyterian Church in Albany. Bob also served on the Foundation Boards of LBCC, Albany General Hospital and Mennonite Village.

Bob greatly valued his family during his life and all the friends that he and Barb made in Albany and the surrounding areas. He and Barb loved working in their yard and garden. As Bob advanced in years, he often joked that he was getting “old and gray, and bent with the chill of the winter’s day,” but he always said it with a chuckle. Bob was a cheerful, positive and optimistic person. Even during his struggles with dementia, his innate good nature never diminished. He will be deeply missed.

He was preceded in death by his wife Barb, his siblings Loretta and Dave, and cousin Loren.

He is survived by his daughters Shirley Spisak and husband Bill, and Maureen Looney and husband Bill, four grandchildren, three great¬ grandchildren, and cousin Margaret Shriner.ert Lowry

Bob was a co-founder of Willamette Seed Company in Albany. He served as president of OSA in 1976-77, and was appointed as an honorary life member sometime thereafter.

Robert Edgar Kuenzi
1940 – 2020

Silverton – Robert Edgar Kuenzi, age 79, of Silverton, Oregon, passed away peacefully on June 14, 2020, at his home, surrounded by his family. Robert (Bob) was born August 17, 1940, in Silverton, Oregon, to Harvey and Emma (Kaser) Kuenzi. Bob graduated from Silverton Union High School in 1959. He married Linda Scharer, the love of his life, on June 29, 1963, who survives him.They shared 56 blessed years of marriage. Bob is survived by his sons, Todd (Melissa) Kuenzi of Silverton, Oregon and Troy (Sherri) Kuenzi, of Silverton, Oregon, and daughters Tresa (Jim) Zollinger, of Silverton, Oregon, Trinda (Brad) Meyer, of Rock Rapids, Iowa, Tonya (James) Schneider, of Silverton, Oregon, Tyrene (Sam) Moser, of Silverton, Oregon, Tasha (Phillip) Petrovic, of Escondido, California, and Tennille (Troy) Stoller, of Creston, Ohio, as well as 32 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren. He is survived by 6 siblings: Helen Dettwyler, Glen Kuenzi, Ralph Kuenzi, James Kuenzi, Richard Kuenzi, and Lynn Kuenzi. Bob was predeceased by his parents, Harvey and Emma Kuenzi, his son Travis Kuenzi, granddaughter Caroline Schneider, and 3 siblings: Lewis Kuenzi, Lee Kuenzi, and Marian Sinn. Bob was passionate about his faith in God; his greatest joy and pleasure was found in his personal relationship with Jesus Christ, as well as sharing that joy with his family. He loved worshiping with his church family at the Apostolic Christian Church. Bob had a deep and constant love for his wife Linda, their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He invested in relationships, invoked laughter, and had a heart for helping others. Bob delighted in singing and often expressed his heart through song. Throughout his life, he lived in the Silverton area, where he enjoyed the local agricultural community. Bob managed the Pratum Co-op for 33 years, developing many relationships that became personal friends. He was a farmer at heart and he enjoyed a challenge. His pursuits were many, including clearing land and raising a variety of crops such as Christmas trees, strawberries, grass seed, and blueberries; thus instilling in his children the value of a strong work ethic. He appreciated the beauty of Oregon and enjoyed fishing and camping with his family.

Bob’s enthusiasm for life was surpassed by his readiness to “blast-off,” as he shared in his final hours. He will be missed tremendously by his family and friends. But he left many precious memories as well as his treasured latter words: “love the Lord with all your heart and He will direct you.”