Ronald Eugene Pelham
June 12, 1933 – February 6, 2021
Beloved husband, dad and friend
Ronald Eugene Pelham best known as Ron passed away on a Saturday in the very early hours of February 6, 2021. Unfortunately, as in much of his life his passing was not an easy one but his blessing was that he didn’t go through it alone. His friends and daughter helped him get through it with dignity and strength. He was 87.
Ron was born in Wymore, Nebraska on June 12, 1933 to Virgil and Mary (Sichley) Pelham. As a child the family moved about through the Great Depression into the 1940’s following work to support the family, from Nebraska and Kansas to the hills of Tennessee to Portland Oregon and back to Kansas after WWII.
Ron had a wide variety of experiences growing up in such culturally different areas in childhood and shared many of those memories with his family. This is how we know that even through the hardest times Ron managed to find many adventurous and fun times. He carried this ability into his teens and adulthood with fast cars and running around with friends in Marysville, Kansas where his family had settled down when he was 12. This is where Ron met the love of his life Margaret Ann (Peggy) Davis. They were married for 45 years until her passing in 2012. They had four children, and in his words he “was lucky to of have had four such good looking kids”.
Before settling down, Ron had joined the Navy in 1952 and served in the Korean War on the USS Los Angeles on which he survived active combat in hostile seas and land, afterwards returning home continuing in the reserves and was honorably discharged in 1960. As in his childhood, Ron managed to find adventure and fun times even in war. He shared many stories of he and his navy buddies surviving attack and “tearing” up the towns on leave finding trouble, romance, and again experiencing a vastly different culture which he admired and appreciated in his stories.
After returning home from the War, Ron worked for the Railroad in Kansas maintaining Trestle bridges. He met and married Peggy in 1957 in Marysville and after their first child was born, he quit the railroad so he could be home and went to work with Woodmen Accident and Life Insurance Company. Marysville being a very small town didn’t offer a lot of opportunity for work for one raising a growing family and so true to his adventurous nature Ron and Peggy decided to move to Portland, Oregon in 1967 with their four children. There Ron worked as a General manager for several major companies Kenny’s, Firestone, and Singer.
Ron was an outdoorsman and enjoyed the Pacific Northwest immensely hiking, camping, fishing, bird hunting, cross country skiing and bicycling various terrain. He included his wife and family in all of his outdoor activities and there were many family good times because of it.
Ron was predeceased by his loving wife Peggy in 2012, his brother Charles (Bud) Pelham in 1990, and his parents Virgil and Mary Pelham in 1998. He is survived by his four children and their partners in life Stacy Pelham-Hooker and Bill of Vancouver, WA; Jace M. Pelham of Portland, Oregon; Roni Jean Haga and Michael of Damascus, Oregon; and Todd M. Pelham of Vancouver, WA; his 102 year old Uncle Russell Sichley of Gresham; his niece Susan Thompson of Estacada; and his nephew Wes Pelham of Boring, Oregon; and by his extended family the Enakiev’s of Eagle Creek, Oregon with whom in his final year of life he was blessed to have developed a close relationship and in their home experienced appreciation for who he really was, and was not only cared for but indeed cared about, and who really enjoyed him.
A memorial service with full Military Honors will be at the Willamette National Cemetery on Friday, March 5th at 2:30pm.
Because Ron loved animals, in lieu of flowers contributions may be made in memory of him to the ASPCA, the Audubon Society, or the Sierra Club.
Military Honors and Committal
Willamette National Cemetery
Ronald Eugene Pelham
Vlad, Ana & Olivia Enakiev
February 11, 2021
Ron has filled our hearts with laughter, joy and happiness since the first day he became part of our family. Our firstborn, Olivia, had the honor of sharing her first year of life getting to know, play and share so much laughter with Ron. He would always say “she sure is a beautiful baby”. Ron will always hold a special place in our hearts. He will always be loved & never be forgotten.