O.D. (Jay) McKee, 83, a former longtime Baker City resident, died Aug. 19, 2006, at his home in Boise.
His graveside funeral will be conducted by the Idaho Lodge No. 1, A.F. & A.M., of Boise on Thursday at 10 a.m. at Morris Hill Cemetery, under the direction of Alden-Waggoner Funeral Chapel in Boise.
During a blizzard on Nov. 12, 1922, in Chardon, Rawlins County, Kan., Jay was born on his grandparents’ farm to Jesse and Anna Laura McKee. The doctor arrived the next day in a horse-drawn sled. Jay’s education began in a one-room schoolhouse near Brewster followed by high school in St. Francis, Kan.
He served in the 137th Infantry 32nd Division during World War II and was injured in a battle on Luzon in the Philippine Islands. Jay was sent to McCaw Army Hospital in Walla Walla, Wash., where he met his future wife Phyllis. They were married in the chapel on the hospital grounds Aug. 12, 1945.
They lived two years in Denver, where Jay attended the University of Denver. He then entered the School of Pharmacy at Washington State University in Pullman, graduating with honors and two degrees in 1950.
He worked briefly as a pharmacist in Wenatchee, Wash., and Lewiston, Idaho, then spent 34 years as a friendly pharmacist serving the people of Baker County.
Jay enjoyed fishing all his life. Another hobby that brought him pleasure was woodworking, especially with his daughter and granddaughter.
Jay was master of the Baker Lodge No. 47 A.F. & A.M. in Baker City, a 32nd degree Scottish Rite Mason and a member of the Shrine.
Jay lived his long battle with cancer in a courageous manner. He was kind to all he knew and kept his good sense of humor and sweetness of spirit to the end of his life
He is survived by his three ladies who cherished him: his wife Phyllis; his devoted daughter, Mary Ann Rode; and the “light of his life,” granddaughter Kelsey Marie Rode of Boise. He also is survived by his son-in-law, Bob Rode of Boise; his brothers-in-law, Jim Jansen of Yakima, Wash., Dick Jansen of Olympia, Wash., and their families; a niece, Vicki Clark Reeves and a nephew, Scott Clark of Denver; and his faithful canine family, Jamie, Annie and Kassey.
Jay was predeceased by his parents, Jesse and Anna Laura McKee; his sister, Joan Clark; and his beloved son, Jay Stanley.
His family is appreciative of the dedicated care given by Dr. Caroline DeFrang, Dr. Avery Seifert, Drs. Charles and Steve Smith and Dr. Karl Undesser and their staffs. We also give thanks to all of you at Mountain States Tumor Institute who made his journey less arduous, and Life’s Doors Hospice — Shirley and Laura —who with their loving care made Jay’s last days more bearable and peaceful.
Jay had a keen interest in the health of children and would be pleased to have donations made in his memory, in lieu of flowers, to the Shriners Hospital for Children, 2900 Rocky Point Dr. Tampa, Fla., 33607 or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, Tenn., 38105.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, August 25, 2006
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor