Thomas T. “Tom” Shira, 66, a longtime Unity resident, died Sept. 13, 2001, at his home.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at 2 p.m. Monday at St. Francis de Sales Cathedral, First and Church streets. The Rev. Robert C. Irwin will celebrate.
Vault interment will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Mount Hope Cemetery. Ritualistic rites will be accorded by the Baker Elks Lodge, No. 338. Military honors will be presented by Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 3048. Family and friends are invited to a time of fellowship and sharing in the Parish Hall after Monday’s Mass.
Mr. Shira was born on Jan. 21, 1935, at Harper. He was the youngest son of Olen Ray and Belle M. Webster Shira. He was raised and educated at Harper.
In February 1954, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He proudly served his country as a yeoman 2nd class, with some time spent in the Korean War. After his discharge from active duty, he remained another four years in the reserves. He was honorably discharged on Feb. 17, 1962.
On May 12, 1956, he married June Marie Clark at Philadelphia. They returned to Harper and later moved to Unity.
Along with working his ranch and training horses, he was a highway maintenance worker for the Oregon Department of Transportation until his retirement in May 1997.
Mr. Shira loved working with his quarter horses. He rode his first horse at the age of six months. He excelled in riding, breaking and training horses.
He derived great pleasure from seeing an untrained horse becoming a well-mannered one. The only problem was that he often didn’t sell the horse because he’d fall in love with it and have to keep it.
He was an excellent husband, father and grandfather. He loved his family and friends very much. He loved to laugh. His children never feared getting lost because they could always find their dad with his laugh.
His other enjoyments included dancing, roping the kids, whistling, and visiting with friends. He also enjoyed watching a good heavy-weight boxing match.
He was a member of the John Day Elks Lodge and St. Joseph Catholic Church at Unity.
Survivors include his wife of 45 years, June Shira of Unity; son and daughter-in-law, Kirk and Lisa Shira of Baker City; daughters and sons-in-law, Kathy and Dean Hatley of Island City, Karlyn and Jim Schindel of Boise, and Kerri and Matt McCowan of Cove; grandchildren, Chase and Mogan Shira, Austin Hatley, Connor and Brennar Schindel and Kegan and Cameron McCowan; brother and sister-in-law, Sargent and Betty Shira of Marysville, Calif.; sisters, Margaret Newman of Yuba City, Calif., and Wanda Rae Jones of Ontario; sisters and brothers-in-law, Phyllis and Buck Mulvany of Little Valley, and Tressa and Ray Falck of Harper; sister-in-law, Donna Shira of Adrian; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents and one brother, Clayton Shira.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Oregon Cancer Society through Coles-Strommer Funeral Home, 1950 Place St., Baker City, OR 97814.
Used with permission from: The Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, September 14, 2001
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor