Leonard Eldon Pesterfield, the last surviving child of Harriett Mae (Hellebuyek) Pesterfield and (William) Russell Pesterfield, passed away Sept. 21, 2019. His ashes were laid to rest with honors at the Willamette National Cemetery in Portland, Ore., where he awaits the return of his Savior.
Leonard was born May 17, 1930, at home off of Fawcett Creek in Tillamook county, Ore. He was the fifth child born to Harriett and Russell. In all, Leonard would have six brothers and sisters: George, Everett, Merrill, Ila (Moore), Clarence and Jack.
The woods and many rivers around Tillamook were Leonard’s and his siblings’ playground. He was a skilled fisherman and loved to get outside and fish nearly any river or stream. He also loved fast cars and, early in life, had a Harley Davidson “hog” motorcycle.
In 1950, the Korean War started. Leonard enlisted in the U.S. Navy Sept. 7, 1950. He was stationed in San Diego, Calif., where he served his country until he was honorably discharged June 25, 1954.
After his service, Leonard returned to Tillamook and, like his brothers, went to work in the woods. When the brakes on his log truck failed while hauling a load of logs down a logging road, Leonard decided that he would rather work in a sawmill, where he worked his way up from pulling green chain to planer man. Leonard loved the precision of operating a planer, where a 1/64th of an inch was important.
In 1962, Leonard married Priscilla Barber of Nehalem, Ore. They were married Aug. 19, 1962, uniting two longtime Tillamook county families. They had two children, Leslie, born in 1964, and Leonara, born in 1966.
In 1976, Leonard accepted a position as a planer man on the Southern Island of Mindanao, Philippines. The family spent an adventurous time in the Philippines until the sawmill where Leonard worked was nationalized by the Ferdinand Marcos regime.
Upon returning from the Philippines, Leonard went to work as a planer man in Riddle, Ore., eventually moving to Hood River, Ore., where he worked as a planer man for Hannel Lumber Company until he retired in 1997.
Leonard is survived by his wife, Priscilla, his son and daughter-in-law, Leslie and Connie Pesterfield, his daughter and son-in-law, Leonara and Matthew Schneider, and his grandchildren, Cascadia Schneider and Jedidiah Schneider. He is greatly missed, but will never be forgotten.
A memorial and reception will be held at 3 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 19 at the Hood River SDA church. The family requests that, in lieu of flowers or gifts, you consider making a donation in Leonard’s name to the worthy student fund at the Mid-Columbia Adventist Christian School, 541-386-3187, www.macshr.org; Milo Adventist Academy, 541-825-3200, miloadventistacademy.com; or Portland Adventist Academy, 503-255-8372, paasda.org.