In memory of
Elery Gene McKern
Elery Gene McKern
April 16, 1924 - Oct. 28, 2019
Elery Gene McKern was born April 16, 1924 in Portland to Michael and Janey (Jones) McKern. He was the youngest of six children. Elery's early years were spent in Newberg, Ore., where he attended the two room school house in the Fernwood District. His mother Janey passed away when he was 11 years old and he and his father were left to fend for themselves. They worked together in the Filbert Orchards and on their small farm. They sometimes made the journey to Portland to sell eggs, produce, filberts or whatever was in season to local grocers or any willing customers.
Before High School he moved to Sheridan, Ore., to live with his sister Wilma. He attended Sheridan High School and excelled at basketball and baseball. It was in Sheridan where he met his high school sweetheart and the love of his life LoDell Lamson. She also came from a farming family and was an usherette at the local movie theater.
After high school graduation in 1941 LoDell went off to college at the University of Oregon and Elery went to work. He worked in the wheat fields of Eastern Oregon for a while and then moved back to Portland to work for Montgomery Ward and Company. In January of 1943 he was inducted into the U.S. Army Air Corps which later became the Air Force. He was in the 23rd Reconnaissance Squadron. His World War II duty took him to Europe, Africa and the Middle Eastern Theater. He earned the Bronze Star and Good Conduct medal during his service. He was discharged Oct. 9, 1945. After his discharge Elery returned to Portland and went back to work for Montgomery Ward.
On Oct. 4, 1947 he married LoDell and they bought a home in North Portland. LoDell went to work for the Meir & Frank Co., and Elery continued to work for Mongtomery Ward. Their only son, Scott, was born in 1955. In 1958 Elery and LoDell moved to Parkrose. Elery went to work for Oregon Brass Works which made metal castings, bronze plaques, burial urns and grave markers. In 1978 they got tired of the cold east wind and moved to Tigard. That year, they also built a beach cabin in Depoe Bay, where they loved to spend time watching the fishing boats and the Pacific Ocean Storms. Elery had a quiet, but strong faith in God. He and LoDell attended the Tigard Christian Church where they made many friends. Elery and LoDell both retired in 1986 and enjoyed many wonderful years relaxing and traveling.
Elery enjoyed fishing, bowling and especially playing golf. He never made a hole in one, but kept trying and loved to compete and play with friends and family. He did not have many hobbies, but he loved spending time and traveling with LoDell. They rarely were apart in their 62 years of marriage- quite a "love affair." On their 25th wedding anniversary they made their first trip to Hawaii. They were so taken with Hawaii that they went back almost every year for the next 30 years. It was their special place. After LoDell passed away in 2009 Elery continued to live in Tigard. He still loved to play golf, visit Depoe Bay and watch the Portland Trail Blazers. He and Scott loved to second guess the coaches. Elery also found great comfort in reading the Bible and attending his church small group meetings.
Elery passed away peacefully Oct. 28, 2019, at the Bonaventure Senior Community in Tigard. Elery is survived by his son, Scott; daughter-in-law, Teri Arthur; multiple nieces and nephews; and many great friends. Elery was a gentle and patient man. His great smile and sense of humor will be missed by all that knew him.
A graveside service with military honors was held Nov. 1, 2019, at the Fernwood Pioneer Cemetery in Newberg. Remembrances in Elery G. McKern's name may be placed with the Alzheimer's Association, ALZ.org or 800-272-3900. Arrangements entrusted with Attrell's Funeral Chapels, Newberg/Sherwood. Please go to Attrells.com to share a fond memory with Elery's family.
Please sign the online guest book at www.oregonlive.com/obits
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