The latest obituaries and death notices for Malheur County

Richard Lee “Rick” Johnson

March 9, 1949 ~ August 12, 2019

Richard Lee “Rick” Johnson, 70, of Vale passed away peacefully in his home while surrounded by family on Monday, Aug. 12, 2019.

Rick was born March 9, 1949, in Ontario, Oregon, to Lewis and Roselind Geary Johnson. He was the sixth of ten children. Rick was raised on their farm and dairy in Vale where he also attended school. He graduated from the College of Idaho in 1972 where he played baseball and basketball. He received a bachelor’s degree in education but returned home to the farm where he worked the rest of his life.

Rick married Sheryl Fowers on May 25, 1972, in the Salt Lake City Temple. The only thing Rick loved more than being outside on a horse was Sheryl. He raised and trained dozens of horses for all of us to ride. He also raised, trained and showed a number of very good reined cow horses. He later bought the Mud Flat Ranch, where he found great happiness riding his horses and training his children.

Rick served on the boards for the Vale School District and Producers Livestock, and served as the Vale 2nd Ward Bishop for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He coached and supported many Vale youth sports teams. He influenced many people, old and young, through his hard work on the farm and ranch.

He is survived by his wife Sheryl Fowers Johnson of Vale; siblings, Janet Girvin, Bob Johnson, Dan Johnson, Chris Johnson, Jerry Johnson, Geary Johnson, and Kelly Johnson; children and their families, Jason and Rachel Johnson and their children Madison and Brian Forrest, Dallie, Emersyn, Isabella, Cal, and Matthew; Travis and April Johnson and their children Riley, Diesel, Claire, and Tucker; Rishelle and Myles Scott and their children Brinley, Ellie, Warren, and Nolan; Lacy and John Blake and their children Bailey, Sadie, Jack, and Jace; and Lisa and Jon Jensen and their children Beau and Luke. Rick was preceded in death by his parents, infant daughter Julianne, and siblings Jay Johnson, Tuck Smith, Rosemary Braniff and brother-in-law Howard Girvin.

Services were held Monday, Aug. 19, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Vale building with a viewing. A beef lunch was served after the graveside services at Valley View Cemetery. There was a viewing at the Lienkaemper Chapel in Vale on Aug. 18.

As dad always said, “Get off of your ace and onto your feet, out of the shade and into the heat.”


Elizabeth Diane (Schwarz) Brown

March, 1955 ~ June 10, 2019

Elizabeth Diane (Schwarz) Brown passed away peacefully in her sleep on June 10, 2019. She was 64 years young.

Diane was born in Escondido, California, on the first day of spring 1955 to Dean and Judy (Walden) Schwarz and resided there many years as well as living in Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada. She married Chris Webb in 1972 and returned to southern California.

Chris and Diane lived in southern California for a few years and were blessed with their daughter Kari in 1974 in Escondido. The Navy took the small family to Tacoma, Wash., in 1975 where they stayed about a year when Chris’s enlistment ended and he moved the family to Adrian. Their son Cameron was born in 1979 in Nyssa, and the family lived just outside Adrian, both working at Amalgamated Sugar in Nyssa.

She survived a major car accident in 1980; she said she was sent back because it wasn’t her time. It’s true. She had more life and adventures to experience.

In the mid ’80s, Diane wrote a column named “Is That Right” for the Nyssa Gate City Journal which chronicled local happenings around Nyssa and Adrian. She was a very talented writer.

In 1990, Diane went on an adventure working for a few weeks on a fishing boat near Bandon, Oregon. She talked fondly about that adventure on the F/V Misty as a crazy time but worth it. In 1991 she moved to Reno to be near her parents and in 1993 was divorced from Chris.

The same year, she decided to try farming and moved to Golconda, Nevada, where she helped raise sheep, goats, pigs, chickens, and turkey. Farming wasn’t her thing so she moved into Winnemucca in 1994 and worked as a cage cashier at the Red Lion Inn and Casino where she met Willis Brown. They were married in 1995 and made their home in Winnemucca until 2001 when Willis’ mining career took them to northeastern Washington. After renting a couple small homes in the area, they realized a dream. They purchased a beautiful log home with two ponds and a creek overlooking the small town. It was a dream of hers several years before to have such a home and she had even sketched it on a piece of lined paper. The similarities were uncanny, right down to the three pine trees in the yard, nearby water, and a convertible in the garage. She had two convertibles.

She collected air plants (and all plants in general). Her homes were always filled with plants. She loved windchimes and had them everywhere. Her favorite flower was the snapdragon. She was a music aficionado with tastes that spanned any genre of music one could think of and she was known to play it loud. She was an incredible writer and could type like the wind!

She spoiled all her grandkids every chance she could get and loved them all very much.

She enjoyed fishing and being near water but always longed for the ocean and where she grew up.

Diane was preceded in death by her father Dean Schwarz; mother Judy Finstad; and stepfather Larry Finstad. She is survived by her husband of 24 years Willis Brown of Metaline, Wash.; children Kari (Bill) Rayson of Homedale, Idaho, and Cameron (Sondra) Webb of Adrian; half-sister Deana Schwarz of Murfreesboro, Tenn.; stepchildren Shawn (Tonya) Brown of San Angelo, Texas, Tina (Derek) Norris of Kingston, Idaho, and Corie Brown of Spokane; 13 grandchildren and one great-grandchild. She is also survived by her beloved and spoiled cat Axel, and her dog Nikita.

Her older brother, Bob Schwarz of Reno, recently joined her in the afterlife on Aug. 12, 2019.

A celebration of life will be held in Adrian on Aug. 31.

We miss you every day and look forward to seeing you on the other side!


Delores Faye Andersen, 84, of Ontario, died Aug. 12 at home. Lienkaemper Chapel, Ontario. 

Byron G. Ryals, 89, of Boise, died Aug. 13 at the Boise VA Medical Center. Haren-Wood Funeral Chapel, Payette.

William D. Bolen, 60, of Fruitland, died Aug. 14 at his home. Haren-Wood Funeral Chapel, Ontario.

Shirley J. Jungk, 93, of Ironside, died Aug. 14. Haren-Wood Funeral Chapel, Ontario.

LEARN HOW TO PLACE AN OBITUARY: Contact Autumn Butler, Enterprise office manager, at [email protected] or call 514-473-3377.