Van, 98, died February 8 in Stayton. He was born in Baker and grew
up there. After graduating from Mt Angel College in 1939, he moved
to St. Paul, where he taught, was the principal and coached
basketball. Van moved to Stayton in 1943 and taught at Stayton
High School and coached basketball and football for 3 years.
In 1946 Van
bought the Star Theatre in Stayton. He built a new theatre
building in 1948 and owned and operated it until 1976. Van was
very active in the community, as a member of the Lions Club,
Chamber of Commerce, Stayton Fire Department, Boy Scouts and
Knights of Columbus serving as district deputy. He served as
President of both Regis High School and St. Mary Elementary
School. Van served on the sewer and water planning commission and
six different terms as Mayor of Stayton, in that capacity, he
appointed the committee for the hospital board and brought the
railroad to Stayton. Van held the first railroad spike, while
Senator Mark Hatfield hammered it in. He enjoyed fishing, which he
did for 90 years and golfing.
Ruth Lathrop on June 5, 1939 in Mt. Angel, she preceded him in
death in 2005. He is survived by children: Ken (Dee) VanDriesche
of Salem, Carla (Gary) Rosenbalm of Stayton, Karen (Richard)
Bettencourt of Groton, MA., John (Diana) VanDriesche of Talbot and
Roy (Sheila) VanDriesche of West Hampton, MA.; 11
grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren. 2 brothers and 1
sister preceded him in death.
Christian Burial will be Thursday, February 16, 2012 at 11:00 am
at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, where he was a member.
Interment in St. Mary Cemetery in Stayton. Contributions may be
made to the church or the Stayton Public Library. Serving the
family, North Santiam
Funeral Service, Stayton.