13 March 2014

W. D. Largent 1868 - 1958

William D. Largent (Willy) 26 October 1868 - 21 December 1958
Willy was born on Grand Island, Oregon, moved to Salem, and then to the Patit Prairie ranch in 1871 with the rest of the family.  His father died of typhoid fever 19 days before Willy's sixth birthday.  His memory of his father was limited to one just one small event: helping him roof a shed.  His sister, Jane, and his mother both married about two years later.  No family members ever claimed Willy's step-father was mean or unkind, and his inability to get along with his step-father is generally blamed on Willy.  He left home when he was 12 or 13 spending some time on Craig Mountain, near the future townsite of Winchester, Idaho, punching cattle and herding sheep.  He then moved in with Jane and her husband, Will.  Willy bought his father's farm from his mother and was farming that when he met Eliza Alice Massey, his Uncle William Matheny's sister-in-law through Mary Jane Massey Matheny.  Willy and Eliza were married on 27 March 1895 in Dayton, Washington.  They farmed the old John Largent place until sometime between 1901 and 1903.  While farming there Willy had his first big earnings.  He delivered that year's crop to the warehouse in Dayton making the last delivery through a blizzard which kept most of the other farmers out of town.  A buyer who needed just a little more wheat to fill a shipment of wheat for China was causing the price to temporarily skyrocket to $1.00 from 25¢.  Willy sold that year's crop at the then unheard of price of $1.00 per bushel.  He hit the top of the market, and they paid off the mortgage on the farm and all other debt.  Real estate records show he sold the farm on 5 December 1899 to Ernest Hopkins for $4,000.  Annie's brother, Jasper, owed an adjoining farm and sold it to Ernest Hopkins on 27 February 1900.  Willy and Eliza then moved to the Moscow area near Jane and Ella's farms.  They bought the "upper place" and later bought the "lower place" which had a better house on it, so they moved there.  One of the places was in Washington and the other in Idaho.  The children attended the Clinton Country School.  When Raleigh reached high school age, he was sent to Moscow's high school.  He was the first person to be denied the privilege of attending Moscow's school because of his Washington residency.  The next fall, 1915, the family moved into Moscow so their children could attend high school and moved back to the farm when winter was over.


W.D. Largent & Eliza Massey
The first year combines were available in the Palouse, two were sold, and Willy bought one.  Much of his family thought this expensive purchase was a big mistake, but it helped make him a wealthy man.  He owned one of the first cars in the area, and made a trip back east to get it.  Parts of the drive home were truly cross country, as there were many miles without roads.  Several times he hired horse teams to pull him through muddy fields.  He was living in Walla Walla when licenses were first required.  Late in his life traffic police stopped him for some violation, but when they did a records check and found Willy had the first license in the county and had no other violations, they gave him no ticket for the offense. 

In the spring of 1916 Willy sold the Moscow farms, and bought the Birch Creek Ranch about twelve miles east of Milton Freewater and twelve miles southeast of Walla Walla just over the Oregon line.  The horses, sheep, and cattle had to be moved there, and Willy gave his children responsibility at an early age.  His three boys, George (16), Harry (15), and Fred (13) were given the job of herding the horses, sheep, and cattle across country to the Birch Creek Farm setting up camp nightly, cooking for themselves, and looking out for the livestock day and night.  It was cold and wet at that time of year, and the animals gave the three boys a challenge keeping them out of people's fields and keeping them moving toward Walla Walla.  The three kinds of animals don't herd together well.  The colts gave the boys the most trouble.  Fred says every time the colts heard a horse whinny, they'd run over to check it out. 

The Birch Creek Farm was prospering when Willy sold the 800 acres for $95,000 to Mr. Elliot.  Willy still had the horses and machinery.  He used that money to buy a 600 acre farm near Dixie.  He then expanded and bought the 840 acre PCI (Pullman College Inc.) farm near Pullman.  The family remained in Dixie, with some of them spending the summers on the PCI place.  Initially, he managed the PCI, and his half-brother, Arty Wooton, managed the Dixie Farm.  The family was then living in the town of Walla Walla.  Willy had enough money in the bank to pay for the PCI farm, but he didn't use it for that purpose.  Just after World War I the price of wheat fell and Willy was on the wrong end of leverage.  During the last few years Raleigh and George and finally Raleigh alone ran the PCI Ranch.  The Dixie Ranch was run by Arty Wooton, but George took that job over during the final two years.  Although Willy traded businesses and moved several times the family remained in Walla Walla.  He sold the PCI to Olan Hodge and traded his interest in the Dixie Place for the Almira Hotel west of Wilbur, Washington.  At that time it was the best hotel between Spokane and Wenatchee.  Fred ran the hotel and Willy oversaw its operation.  Fred quit and Willy traded it for a farm on Wilson Creek between Almira and Wilbur.  The first crop was a failure.  Late frosts caught the wheat in bloom, and it produced almost nothing.  He tried raising sheep, but they died.  By 1931 or 32 he had very little equity in the farm, and sold it.  He used that money to buy a very small farm (40 or 50 acres) near Lowden, Washington.  The farm wouldn't produce much but hay, and its income was inadequate for a family.  After he sold that, he never owned real property again.  Eliza said it took him 15 years to make his money and 15 years to lose it.  By about 1925 Eliza had developed diabetes.  The disease took her from heavy to skinny and caused pre-mature aging.  She fell and broke a hip in 1943.  The diabetes and broken hip caused her death on 19 July 1943.  Willy continued to live in Elberton, Washington for a while.  He spent most of his last years travelling between various relatives' homes, but probably spent more time with Raleigh in Goldendale than he did elsewhere.  People felt welcome in Liza and Willy's home.  They had much company and provided a temporary home for Nellie Boston and later her daughter, Margaret Devine, while they each attended school.  Bessie (Wooton) and her husband, Nat Usher, lived with them for over a year.  Alta Largent lived with them in Walla Walla during one of her early years of teaching.  Nola Simons, a family friend, whose parents left Walla Walla for an area without a school, lived with the family during her high school years and for a few years after and became a part of the family.  Their daughter-in-law, Bertha Kramer Largent, used to tell of one night with much company.  As more guests arrrived children were pulled out of bed and put on the floor until all the beds were filled with adults.  When the guests started getting up, they found Liza working in the kitchen the next morning, but some of their grown children counted beds and heads and asked where everyone had slept.  Liza and Willy had spent the night in a hotel because there weren't enough beds for the adult guests, but no one told the other guests where their hosts had spent that night.  Willy and Liza had eight children:  Raleigh Massey, George Harold, Harry Elbert, Fred, Anna Rosella (Dyer), Ada Mae (Evans), Wayne Arthur (Buster), and William Donald (Chub).





Left:  The four elder boys:  Harry, Fred, Raleigh, & George 1910       Right: the girls: Anna & Ada Largent 1910
1.  Raleigh Massey Largent 16 August 1897 - 18 January 1983
Raleigh Largent 1918
Raleigh was born on the John Largent place near Dayton.  He grew up in Moscow.  He was graduated from ______ grade school (north of Clinton) and attended Moscow High School.  When World War I started he decided to join the Army.  His mother wouldn't sign for him, and his father stayed out of that dispute.  Raleigh told the army he was older than he actually was, and he was off to the European theatre.  After his discharge he met Bertha Kramer, the teacher at the Dixie Dry Creek School.  They were married on 26 October 1921 in Walla Walla.  Initially they lived on the PCI farm.  When Willy sold the farm, they returned to Walla Walla.  He bought into the Walla Walla Iron Works.  That was not successful, so the family moved to Cheney where he sold rod weeders which required frequent travelling.  The marriage weakened; Bertha and the children, John and Alice, returned to Walla Walla.  He met Ruth Andrews while in Cheney.  They were married in January 1928 in Preston, Idaho.  They went to Nebraska where they farmed for six years and got three crops, fire destroyed one crop and drought got the other two.  While they were back there they had a son, Max.  When they returned to the Pacific Northwest, Ruth went to work as a teacher near Goldendale, Washington.  They bought a farm near Goldendale where he farmed until his retirement.  After retirement he built and tried to sell picnic tables and solid oak dining room tables.  Ruth died in September of 1975.  He married Frances Craig in Goldendale, Washington on 3 June 1979.  They moved to her home in Brentwood, California where Raleigh spent the last years of his life.  He died at age 85 of a heart attack or stroke.

    a. John William Largent 21 August 1922 - 4 September 2004
John Largent 1939
John was born in Pullman, but grew up in Walla Walla.  He worked as a grocery delivery boy in high school.  He joined the Army airforce and served in the signal corps during World War II and spent two years in India.  He married Edith A. Danielson on 20 September 1942 in Walla Walla.  After his discharge from the Army at the end of World War II, he purchased the store where he had worked as a lad.  Later he sold the store and worked for his father-in-law in his orchards.  He then went to work for Continental Can where he worked until his retirement.  In January of 2004 he was diagnosed with cancer of the bile duct in the liver and died of that disease in September of that year at age 82.  He and Edith had three children: Judy, Jill, and Jack.



      b. Alice Elizabeth Largent 10 December 1923 - 7 January 2006
Alice Largent 1942
Alice was born in Walla Walla where she married Bruce H. Maxson on 17 October 1942.  After finishing high school she worked as a bookkeeper in a hardware store until John was born in 1946.  When John started school, she went to work for Pacific Northwest Bell.  After Bruce's discharge from the Army he worked for the Post Office in Walla Walla until retiring.  They have one child, John.






   c. Max A. Largent 30 March 1930 - 3 February 1999
Max Largent 1948
Max was born in Chappell, Nebraska.  He married Gay D. Calvert on 5 February 1949 in Longview, Washington.  They divorced.  On 2 September 1966 he married Mari Eddy Caton in Hood River, Oregon.   Marie had three children by a previous marriage: Julie, Linda, and Craig Caton Largent.  Max worked in sawmills and was a sawyer when a stroke in 199___ forced his early retirement and moved him to a wheel chair for the remainder of his life. He died of another stoke at age 68.  He and Gay had two children: Kathy and Russell. He and Marie had one child, Wayne. 


2. George Harold Largent 4 May 1899 - 12 August 1945
George Largent 1925
George was also born on the John Largent place near Dayton.  He quit school while attending Walla Walla High.  He married Bertha May Jensen (May) on 11 April 1920 in Walla Walla.  They moved to the PCI place for a short time and returned to Walla Walla where he worked in the Baker Orchards where they lived until he went to farm his uncle Will and aunt Jane's place after Will's death in 1927.  They farmed that for a few years until they bought the Butte Place which was also in the Clinton School District.  They lost that place about 1933 and returned to Walla Walla.  They then moved to Keller, Washington where they stayed from 1934 to 1939.  He worked on Grand Coulee Dam and helped his brother, Fred, build the grocery store.  Later they moved to Garfield and then Palouse where he worked adding hillside levelers to combines.  In 1944 they bought a farm near Harrison, Idaho.  The next summer he died when horses took off with a binding machine severely cutting his legs.  Although he made it to the hospital alive, they were unable to save him at that time because of the loss of so much blood.  He is buried in the Garfield, Washington Cemetary.  He and May had five children: Bill, Georgia May, Harold, Barbara, and Wayne.

George and the Christmas Tree sale:  George was a gentle and kind man; this story should be read as an odd occurrence in his life. While the family was living on the Dixie Ranch which George was running, he negotiated a deal to provide Christmas trees to Beck & Wynnan, a local grocery store.  Snows were heavy, so the price was high.  The trees were cut and loaded, and the snow melted.  George delivered the trees as agreed.  Since the snow was gone, the buyers could buy trees for less money than what they had promised, so they told George they wouldn't pay the agreed upon price.  George declined the price they offered and said he would take the trees out and burn them.  He started to leave, but the five brothers who where there decided they'd have the trees for the price they were now offering.  The five brothers closed in on him.  One of the brothers slugged him, so George fought back.  The other four brothers decided to help the most aggressive brother who was losing the fight.  Walt Jensen, George's brother-in-law, walked by the store as the last young man was knocked through the screen door.  The fight was over with George the victor, so Walt could offer no help.  George was not a bragger, so the story would not be known if not for Walt's telling it.  Everyone did see that the five brothers no longer went fishing in their old favorite spots on Dry Creek which ran through the Largent farm.

    a. Donald Eugene Largent (Bill) 17 March 1921 - 27 May 1998
Bill Largent 1939
Bill was born in Pullman, Washington.  He worked in ranching, mining, and then on the Keller Ferry after high school until World War II.  When he left the ferry job, he trailed wild horses from the Keller area to the Palouse with his grandfather, Willy.  He married Phyllis Vermillion on 10 December 1944 in Palouse, Washington.  He helped his father on the farm at Harrison, until George's accident in August of 1945 when Bill was 24.  He worked for a butcher for a short time, then went to work for Ring Brothers Rodeo Contractors.  Then he gave logging a try.  In 1951 he returned to ranching, raising cattle and horses. In 1958 they bought the Kewa store, ran its post office, and drove freight line out of Spokane.  In 1967 they sold the store and freight line and moved to the ranch where he lived the rest of his life.  He died of cancer and is buried in the Garfiled, Washington Cemetary.  He and Phyllis had two children: George and Vicki.

 

    b. Georgia May Largent 30 August 1923 - 6 April 1993
Georgia May Largent 1939
Georgia May was born in Walla Walla.  She started school at Clinton like so many of her relatives, but also attended school at Keller, Wilber, and Republic where she graduated in 1939.  She married Thomas G. Flowers, "Tommy" on 10 January 1942 in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.  They lived in Spokane, Riggins, Lewiston, and in 1987 moved to Juliaetta, Idaho.  She was a cook during most of her working years.  She died in her home in Juliaetta of colon cancer at age 69.  Tommy died in Walla Walla, Washington on 28 September 1994 of a stroke.  Both are buried in Garfield, Washington.  They had six children: Linda, Caroline, Billie, Cindy, Marsha, and Calvin.

        (1) Linda Lee Flowers 29 November 1942 - 15 June 1982
Linda Flowers 1964
Linda was born in Colfax, Washington.  She married Larry Ward on 26 May 1959 in Sandpoint, Idaho.  She obtained her GED in      and obtined her RN degree from      in     .  Linda fell asleep at the wheel after working the graveyard shift at a hospital where she was an RN.  She hit a tree which killed her and left her family to finish growing up without a mother.  She is buried at the Garfield, Washington Cemetary.  Larry died in June of 2002 of a stroke and is also buried in Garfield.  Linda and Larry had five children: Steve, Roxanne, Dawn, Scott, and Leslie.  


    c. Harold Clair Largent 7 November 1927 - 14 February 1973
Harold Largent 1946
Harold was born in Pullman, Washington.  He married Patricia W. Davis (Pat) on 16 January 1948 in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.  He worked for his uncle, Fred Largent when they were newlyweds.  Later he went to work for WSU, then as a carpenter during the building of one of the dams.  His next job was at Coulee City working on the irrigation tunnel that takes water from the Columbia River to Moses Lake.  They gave up telephones and electricity to live in Keller, Washington where he worked for a farmer, Glen Whitelaw.  Electricity arrived in November of 1950.  Telephone service wouldn't make it there until the 1970's.  In 1969 the family moved to Waitsburg, Washington where Harold worked for Bob Scherwin.  In 1973 he died of lung cancer at age 45.  He and Pat had six children: Bob, Roxanna, Cassey, Mike, Dick, and Cecil.

        (1) Robert William Largent 17 November 1949 - 26 December 1998
Bob Largent 1968
Bob was born in Ephrata, Washington, attended the first 8 grades in Keller, and was graduated from Wilbur High School in 1968.  He became a skilled skidder operator locally nicknamed "Skidder Bob" and was considered one of the best in the Northwest.  In 1981 Diane Tonasket and he got together making him a step parent to Phillip and Cindi Tonasket who were then in the first and second grades.  Bob died of a sudden heart attack at age 49.  He and Diane Tonasket had a daughter: Juliauna.


    d. Barbara Largent 8 April 1932 - November 2001
Barbara Largent circa 1945
Barbara was born in Moscow, Idaho.  She moved to Council in 1950 where she went to work in the hospital as a nurse's aide.  She fell in love with one of her patients, Robert H. Young "Brig", and married him on 20 October 1951 in Winnemuca, Nevada.  Brig worked for the Idaho Highway Department until 1953 when he went to work for the county road department until a heart attack in the early 1970's forced his retirement.  Barbara worked as a nurse's aid until 1965 when she went to work as a cook until 1976 when she tried early retirement.  In 1989 they returned to work in Burns Junction, Oregon where she worked as a cook and he ran the service station until 1991 when they returned to their home in Council and full retirement.  Brig died of heart problems on January 1, 2000 when he was 85 years old.  Barbara didn't enjoy her time afterward.  Soon after Brig's death she fell, and diabetes soon took her lower leg.  Her will to live deteriorated.  She stayed with her daughter, Kathy, most of the last two years of her life.  She died at age 69 of complications from the diabetes.  Barbara and Brigg have four children Jane, Kathy, Hal, and Jimmy.
Kathy Young 1973


        (2) Kathaleen May Young 19 December 1954 -29 January 2011
Kathy was born in Council, Idaho.  She and Tracy Nunnally had one child: James.  She married Mike Largent (Harold Largent's son) in Walla Walla, Washington on 25 November 1980.  They have one child: Michael.



        (4) James Marion Young 16 September 1958 - 5 September 2008
Jim Young 1973
Jimmy was born in Council where he married Christine Brown on 22 October 1988.  She had two children: Ryan Lloyd Brown and Anna Nicole Sheppard.  They had one child: Jamie.


    e. Edward Wayne Largent 8 March 1934 - 15 April 1988
E. Wayne Largent 1952
Wayne was born in Wilbur, Washington.  He was only eleven when his father died in 1945.  During the summer of 1953 while working for his brother, Bill, he met another hired hand, a truck driver, Shirley Marshall.  With some encouragement from his grandpa, Willy Largent, they started dating and on 17 October 1954 they were married in Wilbur, Washington.  They spent their first married years in the Keller area where Wayne worked in logging, farming, and broke horses.  Wayne went to work for Bill again about 1957, and they moved to Kewa, Washington (a post office and small general store was all that was there).  In 1962 they moved to the Creston/Wilbur area where they drove a mail route from Wilbur to Republic.  In 1967 they bought a place on the San Poil.  Wayne and Shirley both drove school bus for the Wilbur and Keller Schools.  Wayne received several community awards for his support of 4-H, wrestling, and other local youth activities.  He was instrumental in planning the 1988 family reunion but died of cancer before it was held.  He was buried in the Keller Cemetery. Shirley married Dale Bly on 22 February 1998 in Keller, Washington, and they moved to Creston, Washington in 2001.  Wayne and Shirley had seven children:  Joanne, Barbara, Penny Sue, Ron, Bud, Lee, and Randy.



2.  Harry Elbert Largent 18 February 1901 - 12 October 1962
Harry Largent circa 1922
Harry was also born on the John Largent place on the Patit Prairie.  He moved with the family to Moscow where he grew up and earned his Mechanical Engineering Degree from Washington State College (now University) in the early 1920's.  As a child he had scarlet fever which left him with an enlarged heart.  He went east to work for Armco International in Middletown, Ohio where he married Sue Lacatos Hergo, a Hungarian.  During the depression they moved to Oregon where Donna was born in 1932.  Shortly thereafter they returned to Middletown, Ohio where Laretta Lee was born in 1936.  Harry worked for Armco at Middletown, then in Cincinnati during World War II where he held two jobs; an engineer at Wright Aeronautical and a teacher at St. Bernard High School.  After the war he worked at Aeronica Mfg, later for Gardner Paper Company which was later bought out by Diamond International where he was employed when he suffered a fatal heart attack in 1962.  Sue died in August of 1982 of cancer.



3.  Fred E. Largent 14 January 1903 - 12 October 1990
Fred Largent 1922
Fred was born in Moscow, Idaho and moved to Walla Walla, Washington when he was thirteen.  He was very close to his aunt and uncle, Jane and Will Wolfe, who used to tease him that he was really a Wolfe, not a Largent.  As a boy he spent one harvest season with their daughter Ella and her husband, Charlie Adams, doing chores.  He was graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1922.  He attended Washington State College (now WSU) but dropped out when his father's deteriorating financial condition wouldn't support two sons in college.  He married Josephine Amelia Parvin on 28 November 1927 in Colfax, Washington where he was working selling Caterpillar tractors.  In the spring of 1928 they went to Hartline, Washington where they helped Fred's dad, Willy, put in his crops and put up hay.  Fred drove combine that summer, and Jo lived with her parents.  Fred went to Canada that summer to drive combine, working very near Ella (Wolfe) and Charlie Adams' home.  He and Jo had a baby girl who died at birth.  They moved to Wilbur where Fred sold tractors again.  They moved on to Spokane and Odessa.  They moved to the old pre-emption place on Jo's parents' farm as the depression was in full swing, and regular work was hard to come by.  In the summer Fred worked in harvest, and with a big garden, a milk cow, some work on the side, nearby wood for heat, and no rent, they were able to save most of what he made in harvest.  John was born in 1932 while the family was still living on the Parvin homestead.  Fred and his dad tried their hands at road construction.  The Grand Coulee Dam was started, and that September Fred decided to go there to see what work he could find.  He found his brother, George, there, and Frank.  Fred decided to build a grocery store, and the three of them started building one.  They camped there and worked on the building.  In early November when the store was complete enough to provide shelter, Fred sent for Jo and John.  Jo found a neighbour who drove them and a pickup load of belongings up to Coulee City for $20.00.  The building was complete enough that Jo and John moved in the basement where they all lived comfortably.  This building was built before the main contract for the dam had been awarded.  When it was awarded, the store had to be rebuilt farther back from the highway.  They built another building at Grand Coulee.  The boom had begun by this time, and Fred sold the store and went to work on the dam.  About a year later he worked for McCroskey Implement in Colfax and the Harvester Co. in Spokane.  He bought a half interest in an International Implement dealer in Sprague.  An unordered tractor was sent to this dealership, and his partner, Andy Anderson, sold it and pocketed the money.  By the time the manufacturer discovered its error, Andy had spent the money.  The partnership had to pay for the missing unit which was more money than both had.  Fortunately, Andy's father had some money and parted with it rather than see his son go to prison.  Fred was spared the possible sharing of a jail cell with his partner.  The partnership was dissolved.  It was back to the Parvin place where they farmed during most of the war years.  Connie was born while they were there.  The war years were good to farmers, and by 1947 they saved enough money to buy the farm near the Mountain Home Grange outside of Potlatch where they lived the rest of their years.  Emphysema took Fred's life at age 87.  Pancreatic cancer took Jo's life a short time later on 30 May 1991.  Their two children are: John and Connie.


4.  Anna Rosella Largent  13 September 1904 - 9 October 1991
Ann Largent circa 1927
Ann was born at Moscow.  She attended school at Clinton until she was eleven when the family moved to the Walla Walla area.  She was graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1922.  She taught grade school for a short time before going to Whitman College where she was graduated in 1927 as an honor student finishing in three and one-half years with a 4.0 grade point average.  She taught math, history, language, home economics, and physical education in Ortig High School from 1927 until she married Cliff Dyer.  He owned a grocery store in Renton which they operated until about 1948 when they sold it and moved to Spokane where he sold insurance for Mutual of Enumclaw.  During the War Ann worked for Boeing riveting airplanes.  Cliff died on 17 January 1957 and was buried in Spokane's Fairmont Cemetery.  Ann worked in a drug store from the time they moved to Spokane until just after Cliff's death when she returned to teaching.  She taught math and foreign language and served as a counselor at Pines Junior High School in Spokane.  She had no children, but she devoted great amounts of time to her nieces and nephews and was the best aunt she knew how to be.  She retired about 1969 and enjoyed travelling.  She took up ballroom dancing and travelled throughout the Northwest to various dancing competitions.  Her eyesight faded in the early 1980's, and she was unable to read by 1985.  She continued to live alone until about 1988 when she moved in with her former housekeeper, Barbara Gray.  In the winter of 1989-1990 she developed a cold and flu which developed into pneumonia which took most of her hearing.  Her hearing returned in early 1991, but she remained bedridden until her death at age 87.  Barbara nursed her until she died.  She was buried in Colfax, Washington next to her grand-niece, Shannon McBride.

5.  Ada Mae Largent  21 August 1908 -  12 September 2001
Ada Largent 1928
Ada was also born in Moscow and was seven when the family moved to the Walla Walla area.  She attended school at Clinton and Moscow for one year each and completed grade school at Walla Walla's Sharpstein in 1924.  She was graduated from Walla Walla High in 1928.  During the War she printed blue prints for Liberty ships in Portland.  After the War she went to Murphy-Griffin Business College in Seattle in the evenings while she worked in a department store during the day.  She worked for Coast Transit and South Bay between 1945 and 1949 where she met Fred Evans whom she married on 4 June 1949.  In 1950 they bought a tavern between Bellingham and Mount Baker and named it Fred's Tavern.  In 1953 they bought a home in Deming, Washington.  Fred died in July of 1958 of heart problems.  Ada ran the tavern until January of 1963 when she sold it and to be near her family moved to Spokane where she worked for Sears in the catalog department.  She retired in August of 1973 and moved back to Bellingham in 1974 to be near Susie.  In 1993 she sold her mobile home and moved to an apartment.  In 1997 she suffered a stroke and heart attack and was moved to a nursing home in Bellingham.  She died of pneumonia at age 93. Her ashes are buried in Fred's plot in Bellingham.  She had no children but was a devoted aunt, and she assisted in raising Susie Rode who lived with Ada and Fred as a teenager and worked for them.  Susie treated Ada as well as any daughter could, and she is considered a part of the family by all.


6. Wayne Arthur Largent (Buster) 18 January 1911 -13 September 1998
Bus Largent 1929
Bus was born in Moscow and was five when the family moved to Walla Walla.  He attended grade school at Walla Walla's Sharpstein, and was graduated from Dixie's grade school in 1925.  The family then moved back to Walla Walla where he attended all four years of high school and was graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1929.  When that summer's work was over he started working for Woolworth's as a stock-boy.  He transferred from Walla Walla to Pendleton where he was made Assistant Manager in 1931 before being promoted to Assistant Manager at Yakima and finally Assistant Manager at Spokane's main store.  Woolworth started closing stores, and he saw no chance for further promotion, so he quit and bought a hardware store in Grand Coulee Center which he converted to a variety store.  He sold that and moved to Omak where he owned an appliance store selling Maytag washers and Norge refrigerators.  Then he bought a dry cleaning business in Republic.  He sold that business and went to work on Lawrence Largent's farm where he worked for a couple of years.  He left Lawrence's to attend welding school in Moscow where he stayed with Fred and Jo Largent who were living on the Parvin place near Colfax.   While going to welding school, he met his future wife.  He and Rozella E. Mathison were married on 5 October 1941 at the Mathison home across the road from the Clinton School.  They spent the war years in Portland where Bus worked in the shipyards as a welding foreman.  When World War II came to a close that job ended, and they moved in with her parents near Moscow while Wayne looked for other work.  They bought "Sandy's Place" in Winchester, Idaho where they established their family home.  They sold the business in 1952, and Buster went to work for the Craig Mountain Lumber Company as brakeman on the train which ran to the main line.  Bus also farmed about 300 acres near Winchester for several years.  He and Rozella separated after their daughter Kay's death.  Wayne then worked putting in floors and counters, welding, and finished his working years at the University of Washington where he worked as a janitor.  Rosie died of an apparent heart attack on 5 November 1981.  Bus operated a small trailer court on the edge of Moscow until his death at age 87 of a heart attack. He and Rozella had four children:  Karen, Kay, Steve, and Dan.

  
    b.  Rozella Kay Largent 21 July 1945 - 28 May 1961
Kay Largent 1960
Kay was also born in Portland.  The family moved to Winchester when she was a year old.  As a young girl she was a tom boy, good at climbing trees, and riding horses.  As a member of Winchester High's Class of 1963, she was an honor student; she served as her high school class' president one year and as its student council representative her other year of high school.  She was twice named princess at the local county fair, but declined the second time, so that others could have the honor.  She was a cheerleader during both her years at WHS.  The day after she finished her high school sophomore year a drunk driver killed her.
   


7.  William Donald Largent (Chub) 17 March 1915 - 16 April 1993
Chub Largent 1944
Chub was born in Moscow and had just turned one year old when the family moved to Walla Walla.  He finished the eighth grade at Sharpstein Grade School in Walla Walla and completed his freshman year at Walla Walla High.  In 1931 the family moved to Pendleton where Chub would finish high school in 1934.  In high school he was an excellent athlete and established a high school record time of 4 minutes 32.3 seconds for a one mile run.  He was also an excellent basketball player.  The family left Pendleton in 1934, but Chub stayed behind working for Art & Evelyn Lindburg on their wheat ranch.  Later he moved into town and "bached" with Harold Hendricks.  In 1939 he went to work at Andy's Cigar Store as a cook.  He married Laverne Workman on 29 November 1940. In 1941 Chub started working for Pendleton Grain Growers as a truck driver delivering fuel.  Chub enlisted in the Navy in 1943 and was discharged in 1945 when he went to work for Beer Distributing Co. driving a delivery truck.  In 1960 he suffered a heart attack, and his doctor advised a less strenuous line of work, so he and LaVerne bought "Chub's Corner" a neighborhood bar which they owned and operated until their retirement in 1981.  He died at age 78 of _______ .  He was buried at _________ cemetery.

Chub spent much of his "leisure" time supporting youth athletics.  He helped organize and coached Little League Baseball in Pendleton; instructed junior bowling, coached and managed Babe Ruth Baseball as well as helped organized the association in Pendleton.  He coached and sponsored "Chub's" softball team.  He has received plaques in recognition of his support of area athletics from the City of Pendleton for his years with youth baseball and from the National Babe Ruth Association for 25 years of dedicated service.  He and Laverne have two sons: Tim and Bill.

    a.  Harold Tim Largent 26 December 1942 - 5 April 2011
Tim Largent 1960
Tim was born in Pendleton where he was graduated from high school in 1960.  He spent four years in the Navy before returning to Pendleton where he married Susan Hayes in September 1979.  He and Susan were divorced in 1988, and he married Bonnie Beier in Federal Way, Washington on 21 April 1990.  He and Susan have a set of twins: Casey and Shane.








11 March 2014

J Phil Largent 28 Oct 1930 - 24 Feb 2014

J. Philip, "Phil" Largent was born October 28, 1930 in Pasco, Washington to Lawrence and Gertrude (Knipes) Largent. He was the middle of three Largent boys. They lived on a farm in the Kahlotus area until the family moved to Onecho when he was three. He attended the Long Hollow School District #66 near his home. Phil was active in 4-H, ran the mile in track events and was an avid boxer. He was graduated from Colfax High School in 1947 at the age of 16. Phil went to Washington State College for a year, took a year hiatus, and then went back and completed his degree in business in 1952. Having been in ROTC in college, Phil accepted a commission in the U.S. Air Force as a 2nd Lt.  near the tail end of the Korean Conflict and served as an M.P. in Japan. He was honorably discharged in 1954. 
 

Phil Largent 1948 high school graduation
LT Phil Largent 1952


















He moved to Boston where he began work on his MBA at Harvard. He returned to Colfax and married Josephine Hope Munn on December 26, 1955 in Seattle. The couple went back to Boston where he completed his Master’s degree in 1957. With their newly started family, Phil and Josephine moved to Hermiston, Oregon where he worked in accounting and bookkeeping for a farm Co-op. They moved to Walla Walla a short time later and in 1961 moved back to the family farm at Onecho where he joined his brother Dick in the operation of the farm. 

1969 Phil Largent family:  Michael, Phil, Josephine, Susan, and Elizabeth

Phil was very active in the Onecho Church, served on the school board, was a founding member of the Bank of Whitman, served on the board of the Almota Elevator Company and various other community minded projects. Family was extremely important to Phil and he loved spending quality time with all of his family. His life was forever changed in 1982 when a devastating car accident claimed the lives of his daughter Susan, her husband Don, and granddaughter Tia Elizabeth Pierce.  Phil and Josephine moved into the town of Colfax in 1991, and she later passed away in 1995.

Phil was very active in Gideon’s International and an avid supporter and board member of the Whitman County Chaplaincy.  While on a Heritage Club tour to Branson, Missouri, Phil re-connected with a life-long friend, Leslie Rubin Looney. They married July 19, 1997 in Colfax. Phil and Leslie loved to travel together and enjoyed many fun trips. Phil suffered a stroke six years ago that left him handicapped and Leslie remained his steadfast caregiver. 

Phil passed asway on Monday 24 Feburary 2014 at age 83.  He is survived by his wife, Leslie, at their Colfax home; two children, Michael & Audrey Largent, Colfax, and Elizabeth & Roy Anderson, Spokane; three step-children, Nancy & Jerry Wilson, Spokane, Sally & Martin Barraclough, Salt Lake City, UT, and Jean & Jeff Dorgay of Vancouver, WA; 10 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren as well as his brother, Larry and his wife Kristen Largent of Worley, ID. He was also preceded in death by his older brother Richard “Dick” Largent last year. The family suggests memorial gifts to Gideon’s International, P.O. Box 122, Colfax, WA. 99111 or to Circles of Caring Adult Day Health, 225 E. Palouse River Dr., Moscow, ID. 83843. On-line guest book is at www.bruningfuneralhome.com Bruning Funeral Home of Colfax was in charge of arrangements with burial at the Onecho Cemetery.


25 May 2013

Dick Largent 1928 - 2013

Dick Largent was born Nov. 3, 1928 in Pasco, WA the eldest of three sons of Lawrence and Gertrude Knips Largent.  When he was six the family moved to the Onecho area near Colfax where he attended the Long Hollow Country School through the eighth grade.. He was graduated from Colfax High School in 1945 and from Washington State College in 1949 with a BS in Agriculture. Dick was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1951 and served two years during the Korean War. He married Mary Ann Unruh on Oct. 29, 1954, following which they moved to the family farm at Onecho where they made their home. Dick spent his entire career as a farmer. In 1959 he and his wife, Mary Ann received the Conservation Farmer of the Year Award. Dick also served as a board member of the Whitman County Soil Conservation District. He was an active member of the Onecho Bible Church, serving on various committees & teaching Sunday school. In 1988 he and Mary Ann moved from the farm to Colfax where he has lived since that time. After moving to town, Dick took up wood-working as a hobby, creating many treasures over the years.

 
Dick Largent 1945 and circa 1965


Dick truly loved his family and enjoyed spending time with them. He and Mary Ann traveled many times for family reunions and to visit family members who lived elsewhere. In 2008 he moved into the Courtyard in Colfax, where he joined a circle of friends old and new.

Dick died on 7 May 2013 and is buried at the Onecho Cemetery beside Mary Ann.  He is survived by his children Dale (Margaret) Largent of Shanghai, China; Linda (Ron) Rinnan of West Linn, OR; Brian (Debbie) Largent of Colfax & Gary (Lisa) Largent of Colfax; two brothers Philip (Leslie) Largent of Colfax & Larry (Kristin) Largent of Worley, ID; seven grandchildren Shana (Ryan) Bailey; Kelli, Kyle, Erica, Andrea, Katie & Kari Largent. He was preceded in death by his wife Mary Ann in 2011. Bruning Funeral Home of Colfax, WA provided funeral service. The funeral was held at the Onecho Bible Church.  Memorials are suggested to the Onecho Cemetery Association or the Parkinson’s Research Center of Spokane. Online condolences may be sent to www.bruningfuneralhome.com

11 March 2013

Rick Largent 1957 - 2013

Rick Largent was born July 13, 1957, in Spokane, Wash., to Gary Lee "John" and Ardis Lavoy Largent of Potlatch, Idaho. He grew up on the family farm north of Potlatch and graduated from Potlatch High School in 1975. After working at various jobs, Rick went to night school to obtain his journeyman's license while working for an electrical firm. Exuding the confidence in himself he had from early childhood, Rick started his own electrical contracting business, Largent Electric, in the mid-'80s, initially out of his home but ultimately relocating to a site on Robinson Park Road near Moscow.




Rick Largent in 1958





Rick Largent 1975



Largent Electric continued to grow, and in time had more than 30 people on the payroll. Among the many projects Rick's company completed were the Lewiston, Idaho, Walmart store, Tri-State Hospital expansion in Clarkston, Wash., Jennings Elementary School remodel in Colfax, Wash., and numerous jobs on the University of Idaho and Washington State University campuses.

Rick was married in Potlatch and adopted his new wife's two children, Jason and Angela. A third child, Sarah, was born to that union in 1981. The marriage later ended in divorce, and Sarah died of cancer in 1999 at age 17.

In 1995 Rick met with a freak accident, breaking his neck and paralyzing him from the chest down. Officially considered a quadriplegic, he had limited use of his hands and in time was seen "pushing" up and down Robinson Park Road to keep in shape. With his indomitable spirit and determination, he was able to eventually return to running the electrical business but his physical limitations and medical challenges eventually forced him to close it.

Rick found other ways to fill his time, including guitar-playing, writing songs, trying his hand at inventing and spending endless hours on the computer. He even learned to drive a specially equipped van that would accommodate his powered wheelchair. Despite his many setbacks and life-changing trials, Rick never wavered in his faith in God and trust in Jesus.

From early childhood on, Rick had a sense of adventure about him. As a youth he accompanied his mother, Ardis, on a trip to Spain, reporting back that he really liked those "time-outs" those Spaniards took in the early afternoon. As a young adult, Rick joined with two other men to form a country-western band that played frequently at local bars. When Sarah was about 13, she and Rick went to Nashville, Tenn., Rick recalling that trip in ensuing years as a highlight of his life.

At 23, Rick was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes, and after his accident became a spokesman for diabetes research and treatment. He was a guest speaker - from his wheelchair - at conferences in Florida, Denver, Colo., and San Diego, Calif., and was presented the Lilly Diabetes Journey Award for 25 years of successfully managing his diabetes.

It is impossible to capture the essence of Rick's character, determination, heart and inner strength in a few words. He loved family more than life itself, and he relished family reunions and long visits with friends. He was always interested in what was going on in the lives of those close to him, even though he himself couldn't always participate.

Rick passed away on 6 March 2013 in Coeur d'Alene.  He is survived by his father, John Largent and wife Lois of Moscow; his son, Jason, of Portland, Ore., and his daughter Angela Helmke of Moscow; his sister, Sharon Montgomery, of Potlatch; brothers, Terry Largent of Potlatch and Todd Largent of Lewiston; four grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews; and his long-time friend and caregiver, Betty Knight, of Elk River, Idaho. He was preceded in death by his mother, Ardis, and his daughter Sarah.

Memorials may be given to the Potlatch Ambulance Fund, Box 63, Potlatch, ID, or to the Freeze Cemetery, in care of Sharon Stoll, 6220 Highway 95, Potlatch, ID 83855.

Arrangements are being handled by Kramer's Funeral Home in Palouse, Wash. A celebration of Rick's life will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, at the Kramer Funeral Home, Palouse, with his uncle Ed McBride of Colfax and the Rev. Lee Nicholson officiating. Burial will be at Freeze Cemetery north of Potlatch, next to his beloved daughter, Sarah.

31 August 2012

2012 W.D. Largent Reunion a Success

A family reunion blog should be mostly photos with a few comments, but I took far too few photos for that idea to work.  Ed McBride came through with his photos this week, so here's a late written blog supported by Ed's photos!



Rich and Brad cooking breakfast



More kitchen action: Penny Sue, Misty, John, and Brad


Misty did an Outstanding job planning, setting up, and keeping us all enjoying ourselves at the 2012 reunion.  Every time we saw Misty or Brad they were working!  Thanks for all you do for us Misty and Brad!

I arrived Friday afternoon just in time for the lesson on how to operate the newly refurbished carousel.  As soon as we had the part covering actual operation of the machine, I got lost.  Motion sickness was setting in.  Operating the carousel would be Lee Largent and his cousin, Brian's, job as they were relatively immune.  Troy Eldridge showed up for a late lesson Saturday, but after standing on the inside of the carousel for one round, he came up missing for the 2nd half of the lesson.  Motion sickness apparently runs on our side of the family.  The kids would have kept Lee and Brian running the thing full time, but eventually even they felt a bit nauseous, so the carousel didn't run the entire weekend.





The big kids enjoyed the carousel too though Barb tries hiding from the camera here


 

Ruby and her Great Uncle John enjoy the carousel
 


If the carousel was moving, Ruby was on it, having a great time. Dakota in the background



Was Great Uncle Lee's Safety Lecture that Bad?


The Creek provided entertainment for a "duck float" contest as well as as wading and splashing




Surely he's not throwing the baby in the creek?




The family watches to see whose duck wins the "duck race"


Family baseball was part of the action too.


Chelsea at the bat




Family Patriarch, John Largent, at the bat



Ronee Jo Pitching



"Next Reunion, I'll be on the field with the big kids"



Waiting for their supper?



Karen wins an award; Connie at her side



In Mike's absence, Steve wins the "Bald Head" award


Evening Campfires



Campfires demand Smores, don't they?



Camille and Marlee enjoy a quiet walk




Cleanup, and the Reunion is Nearly Over




Connie contemplating the end of the reunion


With the Sunday morning announcement that cleanup would begin right after breakfast, everyone seemed to disappear.  We didn't have a family business meeting (planning for the next reunion) and we missed family photos, so I'm glad Ed came through with all these. Here's a hot link to all Ed's photos, the few I took, and maybe someone else will contribute a few more?

I've learned to appreciate Sunday evening at the reunion.  It's usually just a few of us hold outs, but it gives me a chance to get some real visiting in with just a few relatives I rarely see.  This year a cross-state touring bicyclist showed up to join Penny Sue, Dave and me.



I thought I'd share this photo of the 1st cousins taken at the 1988 reunion also held in Republic
Back: Bill, Bill, Dan, Max, Steve
Front: John, Georgia, Karen, Connie, Alice, and Barbara


 Steve