– Dick, 81, died Thursday, February 18, 2016 at his home in
leaves his wife of 60 years, Mary Heater; his sisters, Margi
Heater and Mary Rhodaback; his eight children, Jeff
Heater, Julie Arnzen, Sue Nichols, Rob Heater, Mike Heater,
Dave Heater, Amy Ruddy, and Scott Heater along with their
spouses; eighteen grandchildren and their spouses; two great
grandchildren and many close friends.
October 6, 1934, at the Salem Hospital, the first child of
Doug and Gloria (Weddle) Heater, he was a lifelong resident of
Stayton. As a young child, he lived with his parents at
the original Heater homestead near Union Hill, outside
Silverton. They also lived a few summers at a Heater logging
camp at Detroit, and then settled onto the farm on Siegmund
Road in 1938. In his early years, Dick helped his Dad
run the 850-acre family farm, growing strawberries, grain, and
grass seed, and caring for the horses and livestock.
attended the one-room schoolhouse at Siegmund Road for
his early grade school years. He continued at Stayton Public
Schools and graduated in June 1952. He attended two
years at Oregon State University, where he joined Delta
Tau Delta fraternity and studied agriculture.
wife Mary Louise (Hottinger) wrote him a letter during his
freshman year, and that led to their marriage on September 15,
1956, at St. Boniface Church in Sublimity. Their road
trip honeymoon began at Timberline Lodge and continued down
through southern California. This began what was to be a
lifetime of domestic travel. They lived in the “Little
House” on the farm and started their family with their first
son, Jeff, born in 1957. They moved to the “Big
House” in the summer of 1969 where they celebrated the birth
of their last son, Scott, in 1970. They lived on the
farm with their eight children until the mid-1990’s. These
years are filled with stories of the Big Pond, winter skating
and sledding, berry bus vacations and many, many treasured
farmed with his family through the 1970’s, and managed the
farm up until his death. While farming, he used a berry bus to
drive Regis students to countless sporting events and skiing
at HooDoo Ski Bowl, where he taught his own kids to ski. In
1977 he helped build and then purchased one of the
original Paymaster aerodynamic trucks. This truck began
Dick’s 30-year hauling career, traversing the continent
with his wife, children, and grandchildren. Many times his
routes were chosen to pick up or visit his family and friends
all over the country.
rosary and vigil will be held at Immaculate Conception Church, 1077
N. 6th Ave., Stayton, on Friday, February 26, at 5:00 pm.
The funeral service will be held at Immaculate
Conception Church on Saturday, February 27, at 1:30 pm.
a tribute to his life-long love of horses, a horse-drawn wagon
will lead a procession to the graveside service at Lone Oak
Cemetery. A celebration of Dick’s life will follow the
contributions can be made to the Regis Foundation, 550 W.
Regis St., Stayton, OR 97383. Serving
the family, North
Santiam Funeral Service, Stayton.