Lewiston Morning Tribune - August 12, 2010

Ronald W. Dodge Sr., 74, Lewiston

      Ronald Wayne Dodge Sr. passed away from lung cancer at Life Care Center in Lewiston, on the afternoon of Sunday, Aug. 8, 2010.

      Ron was born Aug. 19, 1935, in Burns Hospital at Orofino. His parents, Mayme Brown Dodge and Earl E. Dodge, were living in Ahsahka at the time. Ron lived in Ahsahka for six years before his family moved to Port Angeles, Wash. From there, Ron went through several short-lived relocations as he moved back to Ahsahka, to Mullan, Idaho, to Detroit, back to Ahsahka, to Kamiah and other central Idaho homes. He left formal public schools in 1951 at the end of his freshman year, but received his general educational development certificate from the University of Idaho in 1955.

      Ron enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1953 and was stationed in Fort Ord, Calif., until his honorable discharge as a private first class in 1955. He received the Army's Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal and the Marksman Badge.

      After his Army service, Ron moved back to Mullan to work as a hard rock miner from 1955 to 1962. While in Mullan, he met the gorgeous Barbara May Neff and swept her into a torrid 52-year marriage, spotted with the births of five children: Donna Lois Dodge Weger with husband Michael Weger of Clarkston and Headquarters; Ronald Wayne Dodge Jr. with wife Ava (Terri) Hunt Dodge of Dallas, Ore.; Diana Elaine Dodge Wright with husband Douglas Wright of Wasilla, Alaska; Scott Edward Dodge with wife Janet Louise Clauson Dodge of Nampa; and Michael Elliott Dodge with wife, Nicole (Nikki) LeAnn King Dodge of Nampa. Barbara passed away in July 2007, and all children survive the parents.

      Ron left the dangers of the mines in 1962 and moved his young family to Seattle, where he attended barber school with his sister, Kathryn Dodge Jacobs. He barbered for two years before returning to Mullan and the mines in 1964. In 1967, they moved to Lewiston, where Ron worked installing gas lines with his stepfather, Eddie Nurmi, at Meacham & Sons Construction. Ron then went to work with Potlatch Corp. in 1968, retiring from there in February 1996. Ron received his journeyman electrician card while working in the Potlatch electric shop. His most famous work for Potlatch was working on the log drives, including the Last of the Great Log Drives in 1971, which was captured in a feature film, where Ron was shown barbering some of the crew during downtime in the evening.

      Ron was an excellent craftsman and completed innumerable wood and metal projects in their Lewiston Orchards home. He had been a Jaycee in Mullan, a member of the Mullan Volunteer Fire Department and a member of the Good Shepherd Church in Lewiston.

      In addition to his children, Ron is survived by 12 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his siblings: Beverly L. Brown Dodge Choate of Osoyoos, British Columbia; Earl F. Dodge of Lewiston; Kathryn Dodge Sly of Clarkston; and Kenneth E. Dodge of Port Angeles, Wash.

      He was preceded in death by his brother, Gary L. Dodge Sr.

      A memorial service for Ron will take place at 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Lewiston. Those wishing to make memorial donations may give them to the American Cancer Society.

Transcribed by Jo Frederiksen, 2014

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