2024 Garfield County, Washington,
Funeral Notices and Obituaries


Jackson Taylor Waldher

Jackson 'Jack' Waldher died on Thursday, April 11, 2024, at his home in Lewiston. Jack was born on April 24th, 1928. Merchant Funeral Home is in charge of funeral arrangements.

Stephanie Kristine Ahlstrom

obituary photo of Stephanie Kristine Ahlstrom

Stephanie Kristine Ahlstrom, 38, of Pullman, passed away March 13, 2024, at her Pullman residence.

Stephanie was born April 23, 1985, in Lewiston. She grew up in Culdesac and Pomeroy attending school in both communities. Her nicknames were “Rue” and “Homie” and many people knew her by that. Stephanie had many interests and family and friends was at the top of the list. She enjoyed music, was very creative, good with fine Native American bead work, leatherwork, including making tribal medicine bags.

obituary photo of Stephanie Kristine Ahlstrom

Stephanie attended local powwows, enjoyed concerts with friends, BBQs, potlucks and gatherings with the people she loved. She was an amazing cook, especially making frybread, Mexican foods and salsas. Stephanie was grounded in her faith and belief in Jesus.

She is survived by her children Luis, Victorio and Zamira; her mother Shannon Ahlstrom Sanchez; her brothers Samuel, Skyler, Sidney and Shadow Allman; her cousins that grew up with Stephanie like siblings David, Brian, Robert and Testa. She was preceded in death by her biological father Gary Peery; the active dad in her life Samuel Allman; maternal grandfather Phillip Ahlstrom; maternal grandmother Marie (Creswell) Ahlstrom; paternal grandfather Leland Peery and paternal grandmother Louise Ernestine Shoun (Chastain).

A celebration of life will be at a later date.

Corbeill Funeral Home of Pullman is in charge of the arrangements.

Ann (Schultheis) Heitstuman

obituary photo of Ann (Schultheis) Heitstuman, Spokane

Ann (Schultheis) Heitstuman, 89, died peacefully at Riverview Memory Care in Spokane, on Tuesday, March 12, 2024. Born March 15, 1934, in Uniontown to Jacob and Frances (Haupt) Schultheis, she was the second of five children. She grew up on the farm where there was a lot of hard work but also fun. After attending Catholic School in Uniontown for 11 years, she graduated from Notre Dame Academy in Colton in 1952 as the school in Uniontown had closed. In 1955, Ann graduated from Sacred Heart School of Nursing in Spokane and worked there until she married. She then worked at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Lewiston, and at the Garfield County Memorial Hospital in Pomeroy. She married Bob Heitstuman on June 16, 1956, in Uniontown. They lived in the Clarkston Silcott area for 2 years after their marriage and then moved to the farm they purchased on Howell Grade in Pomeroy. After purchasing the farm, Ann stayed home to help on the farm and raise their four daughters. They farmed there until their retirement in 1987 when they moved into town.

Among her passions were reading, especially murder mysteries and medical dramas, watching sports on TV or listening on the radio and she loved playing cards — especially weekly bridge and pinochle games. She was well-versed on world affairs and local politics and never hesitated to write a letter to the editor or call or write state or national representatives on issues she felt strongly about. She also loved good country music. She was a great cook and loved to bake.

She was an active member of the Holy Rosary Catholic Parish Altar Society until her move to Spokane in 2020. She was a charter member of the Spade Swingers Garden Club, on the Community Action team, served on the hospital board and was an advocate for the facility and otherwise active in community affairs. In 1975, she was chosen Citizen of the Year in Pomeroy. She was the interim administrator at Garfield County Hospital while a search was going on for a permanent administrator and was Emergency Management Director for a time. Ann volunteered countless hours to projects around town and at church. She was extremely generous to her family, friends and community.

Ann is survived by four daughters: Cheryl (Pat) Wallace, Carole (Michael) Gauche, Christy Heitstuman, all of Spokane, and Connie (Dave) Goude of Walla Walla; five grandchildren: Michelle (Paul), Jeff, Jessica, Jacob (Natalie) and Ryan; four great-grandchildren: Jenna, Jackson, Wyatt and Simon; sister, Lela Sergi, sisters-in-law Karen Schultheis, Edna Mae Schultheis, Joan Landrus, Shirley Heitstuman and Sherryl Heitstuman and many extended family members and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Bob, brothers Carroll and Leigh Schultheis, and sister Myrna Schimmels.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 6, at the Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Pomeroy, with a Rosary recited before the Mass at 10:30 a.m. A dinner will follow at the Catholic school. Her final resting place will be at the Holy Rosary Catholic Cemetery.

Memorials may be made to the Holy Rosary Parish Preservation Fund, Morning Star Boys Ranch, Monastery of St. Gertrude, or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

Marianna "Louise" Louisa (Schuelke) Munday

obituary photo of Louise (Marianna Louisa) Schuelke Munday, Pomeroy

Louise Munday died Sunday, March 3, 2024, at Garfield County Memorial Hospital in Pomeroy, just 11 days shy of her 101st birthday.

Louise was born Marianna Louisa Schuelke on March 14, 1923, to Albert and Gertrude Purcell Schuelke, at Schuelke farm up Rickman Gluch. She attended the first five grades of school at Pataha, grades six through eight at Holy Rosary Catholic School and high school at Pomeroy High School, graduating in 1941. She was the last surviving member of the class of 1941.

After graduating from high school she borrowed $100 from her grandmother to pay for tuition at St. Ignatius hospital nursing school in Colfax. Her nurse's training was delayed when her brother, John, was taken prisoner of war in the Pacific in 1942. She was heart broken and dropped out of school for six months before returning. She eventually finished her nursing training at Sacred Heart Hospital in Spokane in 1946.

While a student at St. Ignatius in Colfax, she met a young man who worked for farmers in the area. Howard Munday was a patient in the hospital with a broken leg. She thought him "an obnoxious flirt" and was glad when he was released. They eventually ran into each other in downtown Colfax and soon began dating. They were married Nov. 8, 1947, and shared 41 years together before Howard passed away May 25, 1988.

They built a house in Colfax and Louise worked at St. Ignatius for nine and a half years. In 1955, Louise and Howard moved to Pomeroy to help care for her ailing father and she went to work at the Pomeroy hospital. During her Pomeroy nursing career she worked for Dr. Weiland and Dr. Bond, then Dr. Weiland and Dr. Herron. She worked in the medical office of Dr. R. J. Weiland Sr. for a total of 33 years. Her nursing career spanned a total of 46 years.

Louise's life was one of service to her community. She was honored as Retired Senior Volunteer Program volunteer of the year for Washington state in 2001. She served many years on the Garfield County Human Services Board; one of the founders of the local food bank; active in the Daughters of the Pioneers; Garfield County Pioneer Association, being the Honored Pioneer in 2002. She served on the Board of Commissioners of the Garfield County Hospital District and was a very active member of the Area Aging and Long Term Care Board. She was instrumental in the beginning and was a very active member of the Garfield County Senior Citizens Center. She played pinochle at the center just three days before she died, and legend has it that she was a cut-throat pinochle player.

Louise was the guardian to neighbor Garth and Helen Bull's two adult children (Garth Jr. and Judy Ann) who had disabilities from birth, after their parents passed away. Louise cared for Garth and Judy until their passing, Garth in 2006 and Judy in 2011.

Louise was preceded in death by her parents; her husband Howard; her brother John, who died as a Japanese Prisoner of War in 1944; and foster children Garth Bull Jr. and Judy Ann Bull. She is survived by many nieces and nephews.

Louise was a lifelong member of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Pomeroy. Rosary service will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, at the church at 634 High St., Pomeroy, and a funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, March 14 Her ashes will be buried at the Pomeroy Cemetery with Howard.

Memorials may be sent to the Garfield County Senior Citizens Center, P.O. Box 23, Pomeroy, WA 99347, or the Garfield County Food Bank, P.O. Box 15, Pomeroy, WA 99347.

Angela Roosevelt-Lytle

obituary photo of Angela 'Angie' Roosevelt-Lytle of Pomeroy

Angela "Angie" Roosevelt-Lytle, 46, of Pomeroy, unexpectedly passed away on Thursday, Feb. 22nd, 2024, at Garfield County Memorial Hospital. Angie was born on Nov. 5, 1977, in Pomeroy to James Roosevelt and Rosie Cormier.

Angie attended Pomeroy Elementary School and Pomeroy High School, ultimately earning her GED in 1998. Angie married her childhood best friend, Steven Lytle, on April 29, 2000, at Pomeroy Christian Church. They were married for almost 24 years at the time of her death. Together they raised three children, Isaac Roosevelt (deceased), Shaylyn Roosevelt of Pomeroy and Dominick Roosevelt-Lytle of Pomeroy.

Angie was a homemaker most of her life and enjoyed taking care of others. Whether it was taking care of her children, helping care for bonus children or helping people in her community, she was always taking care of others. Angie enjoyed every moment spent with family and friends, from camping and outdoor activities to the big Fourth of July barbecue that she always hosted.

Angie is survived by her husband, Steven Lytle; son Dominick Roosevelt- Lytle (Hannah); daughter Shaylyn Roosevelt (Christopher); grandchildren: Kolby Sparks, Amara Sparks and Henry Roosevelt-Lytle; father James Roosevelt (Ruth); sister LenaKay Schuman; stepsister Tara Cochrane; mother-in-law Teri Lytle; brother/sister-in-law Michelle and Jeff Bagby; bonus sister Hope Carroll (John); and far too many more relatives and friends to name.

Angie is preceded in death by son Isaac Roosevelt; mother Rosie Cormier; granddaughter Ellie Sparks; grandparents Herbert and Kay Cormier; father-in-law Dave Lytle; and grandparents Jim Sr. and Evelyn Roosevelt.

A celebration of life will be held at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, March 9, at the Pomeroy Christian Church, 310 Eighth St., Pomeroy. Memorial donations in Angie's name may be made at the Bank of Eastern Oregon, P.O. Box 8, Pomeroy, WA 99347. Online donations can be made through Venmo to @shaylyn-roosevelt.

John Lawrence Stephens

obituary photo of John Lawrence Stephens

John Lawrence Stephens was born in the Pahsimeroi Valley of Idaho on January 31, 1927. His parents, John William and Ellen Irene Stephens (nee Fogarty) homesteaded in view of Mount Borah. At thirteen, he left to attend high school.

John was drafted by the U.S. Army near the end of World War II and trained as a scout. After the war, he went to Panama as a medical supply sergeant.

John attended Washington State College in Pullman, where he met Dorothy Evelyn Branch, the love of his life. Their “story” reads like a movie script.

John received a degree in mechanical engineering and worked for Allis-Chalmers in Milwaukee and Stearns-Roger in Denver before going oversees to Saudi Arabia to work for the Trans-Arabian Pipeline Company, and later the Arabian-American Oil Company. He designed compressors, pump stations and power plants. John and Evelyn traveled the world with their four children: Ken Putnam, Lynn Stephens, Joanne Stephens (Pederson) and John D. Stephens.

After ten years overseas, the family returned to the USA. John received his master’s degree at WSU and became Facilities Engineer at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Ore. Upon retiring, John started his consulting business — Delta Engineering Services.

John and Evelyn thoroughly enjoyed Corvallis. They were active in Shepherd of the Valley Missouri Synod Lutheran Church. John was longtime treasurer of the Corvallis Rotary Club. John also enjoyed playing bridge, participating in Cycle Oregon and writing his book of memoirs. He was fond of cats, dogs and horses. He enjoyed walking. He was a pun-master. He also loved all babies and kids. His biggest smiles were for them, especially for his numerous great-grandchildren.

He generously provided the extended family with adventures: camping at Wallowa, Oregon, a houseboat trip on Lake Roosevelt, horseback riding at Stehekin, ocean fishing....

When nearly ninety, John weathered a laryngectomy, even though he had diabetes and kidney disease. He learned to talk with a “buzzer” but, with a grin and a glint in his eye, he would “buzz-buzz” to say hello, thank you, good job, or just hey you.

John and Evelyn moved to Spokane Valley, and then to Pomeroy to be near family. In August of 2023, the family helped John and Evelyn celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary.

John was 97 when he died at Garfield County Hospital in Pomeroy on Wednesday, February 21, 2024. John was greatly loved by many and will be sorely missed.

There will be a memorial at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 2, at Richardson-Brown Funeral Home, 750 Columbia St., Pomeroy, and military honors will take place at noon Tuesday, March 5, at the Wenatchee Cemetery. We suggest donations to John’s favorite charity, the Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch.

William "Bill" Ruchert

William Boyd Ruchert passed away on Monday, Feb. 12, 2024, surrounded by his loving family. He was born on April 16, 1954, to Dorothy and Boyd Ruchert.

obituary photo of William 'Bill' Boyd Ruchert

William, known to his friends and family as "Bill," was a dedicated family man who cherished spending time with his loved ones. He is survived by his devoted wife, Marcia, and his daughters Trisha (Brian), Rachel (Jacob) and Katie (Jim). He was also blessed with seven grandchildren: Jace (Carmen), Trent, Maddox, Brodie, Ahni, Gunner and Stella.

Bill found great joy in the simple pleasures of life. He loved camping, hunting, fishing and watching his grandchildren play sports and dance. His happy place was amidst the serene beauty of the Blue Mountains, where he had built a cabin with his own hands, creating cherished memories with family and friends.

Bill's love story with his high school sweetheart, Marcia Perry, spanned over five decades, recently celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary.

Bill dedicated 44 years of his life to Dye Seed Ranch, where he educated himself to become the best field man. He was part of a large family of 11 brothers and sisters and one brother-in-law. He is survived by Mary, Linda, Bud, Russ and Mike, Scott (brother-in-law) and was preceded in death by Dan, Buzz, Rick, Dave and Kathy.

A celebration of Bill's life was held at 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 23, 2024, at the Spinners Hall, 699 Columbia St., Pomeroy.

In lieu of flowers and gifts, the family kindly requests contributions to the Garfield County Forever Fund. Online donations can be made at their website or send checks to: Blue Mountain Community Foundation, Attn: Garfield County Forever Fund/In Memory of Bill Ruchert, P.O. Box 603, Walla Walla, WA 99362.

Richard James Keith

obituary photo of Richard James Keith, Spokane

Richard James Keith was born October 3, 1933 in Pomeroy Washington and passed away on February 11, 2024 at age 90 in Spokane Washington. Richard was proceeded in death by his brother Ronald Mace Keith. He worked for the Forest Service and in the canning industry in Pomeroy Washington. He was a beloved uncle and friend to his family.

 

 

Brett Murray Berringer

Brett Murray Berringer, 73, of Spokane died Saturday night, Feb. 10, 2024, at Valley Medical Center in Spokane. He was born Jan. 13, 1951, to Earl A. and Annie L. Berringer in Pomeroy.

Brett graduated from Pomeroy High School, class of 1969. He was a member of the Methodist Church and Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity and earned a degree in political science from Washington State University. After which, he worked as a contractor building homes until becoming disabled following a car accident.

Brett enjoyed golfing, playing the guitar, hunting and fishing. He is survived by his sister Beryl Brown, of Helena, Mont. and brother Dallas Berringer, of Barrigada, Guam.

A graveside service is planned for later in the spring. Richardson-Brown Funeral Home of Pomeroy is in charge of the arrangements.

Frances Cordelia Knebel

Frances Cordelia Knebel, 81, died Friday, Feb. 9, at her home. Richardson-Brown Funeral Home of Pomeroy is in charge of arrangements.

Joan L. Hays

Joan L. Hays, 85, of Pomeroy, died Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024, at Garfield County Hospital. Joan was born on September 7, 1938. Richardson-Brown Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Betty Rae “Sam” (Davenport) Leibold

On the evening of January 1, 2024, Betty "Sam" Leibold left her earthly home. She was 72 years old. Born Betty Rae Davenport on November 6, 1951 to Burton Davenport and Orvabelle (Leach) Davenport in Pomeroy. She has a brother who is a year older.

obituary photo of Betty Rae 'Sam' (Davenport) Leibold

Raised on a ranch outside of Starbuck, as a young girl, she loved to ride to the breaks of the Snake River and watch the Little Goose Dam construction. Along the way she became known as “Sam” with the beautiful red hair.

She was married for a short time in the late 60's and had a son, Shane whom she dearly loved. In the early 70's she had a terrible toboggan accident which left her hospitalized for quite a while. After that it was a virus that paralyzed her for 6 months, a car accident, and a horse wreck.

By the late 70's she was one of McCollum Ford's top salespersons. During this time, she also represented the Diamond Spur Rodeo as their Queen for 4 years. The audience loved to watch her come into the arena full speed with the flag and her red hair flying behind! She later worked in the insurance industry and traveled the states of Washington, Idaho, and Montana, where she made many lifelong friends.

She met the love of her life, Bruce, in July of 1995 on a benefit trail ride in northern Idaho. They married July 19, 1997 and she joined her husband in his saddle shop (Sweetwater Saddlery) in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana. She helped at all the shows including the Black Hills Stock Show and was a very important part of the business. She enjoyed doing the shows and meeting horse people.

A few years later they bought a small ranch and ran it and the saddle shop. She loved doing both. She was tireless and wouldn't stop till the sun went down. She was also an excellent gardener and many people enjoyed stuff from her garden. She had a strong dislike for weeds and would not allow them to exist on her place! When they sold the ranch and semi-retired they built a house in the woods. She designed it the way she wanted it and helped build it from the ground up. She was a very talented woman. Truly a Western girl.