Leonard L. Len Sharp
The Love of my Life
Leonard L. Len Sharp, 73, went to be with his Lord and Savior Saturday, June 15, 2013. He was born May 15, 1940 to Bertha A. Moine Sharp and Dan E. Sharp in Klamath Falls, Ore. The family soon moved to Grants Pass, Ore., where he spent most of his early childhood. The family moved to Gold Beach, Ore. when he was in the sixth grade. Len graduated from Gold Beach Union High School in 1958. He was very active in sports and football was his favorite.
He went to work at the saw mill where his father was employed, but decided that was not what he wanted to do the rest of his life. He entered the U.S. Army in October 1959 and did his basic training at Fort Ord, Calif. and tank training school at Fort Knox, Ky. His first tour of duty was in Bad Kissingen, Germany. He was able to travel to Italy, France, and Spain while there and spoke often of his many adventures. He learned the language and embraced the culture. Sadly, after 18 months he was called home on emergency leave due to the death of his father, Dan. He was then assigned to Seneca Ordnance Depot at Geneva, N.Y. and escort guard duty for transport of nuclear warheads. He received an honorable discharge in October 1962.
Len then took advantage of his G.I. Bill and entered Oregon College of Education in 1963. He graduated Magna Cum Laude with his Bachelor of Science degree in education in 1967. His math scores while attending OCE were so high he was offered a fellowship at Harvard, which he could not accept as he had already accepted a teaching position at the Medford Mid High School and was eager to start his career. Len's first teaching assignment was Medford Mid High teaching math and coaching ninth grade basketball (1967-1980) and was also the golf coach at Medford Senior High and was there until 1985. He then taught advanced math at North Medford High until his retirement in 1995.
He continued coaching golf for 17 years. His teams won 15 Southern Oregon Championships, and seven state championships. Len was nominated for Oregon Coach of the Year three times. During all of this busy schedule he continued his own education at Southern Oregon College and received his Masters degree in math in 1971.
Len met Patricia Herring in November 1992 and became constant companions - fishing, camping out with friends, and dancing; he also taught her to play golf. Len married Pat July 10, 1998 in Reno, Nev. And they began an adventurous life together. Their first being a cruise with eight friends from Acapulco, Mexico through the Panama Canal with stops in Costa Rica, Curacao, Aruba, St. Thomas, and Puerto Rico. The same year they joined a group of friends and drove to Mazatlan, Mexico. They loved their time there and embraced the Mexican people and culture, and continued going there each winter for five to six months for 10 years. They also traveled to Canada to visit friends they met in Mazatlan. Len's love of golf took them to Lake Tahoe's Celebrity Golf Tournament many times.
Len was a real sports nut. Len and Pat's first date was a football game at Speigelberg Stadium because he promised his student he would be there for the Black Tornado. He also loved gardening, and shared his veggies with family, friends, and neighbors. He also enjoyed watching the many birds in the yard, playing cards and pool. Len cherished all the wonderful time spent with family and friends.
Len is survived by wife, Pat; brother, Jim Sharp, of Gold Beach; sister, Joy Bruce, of Lebabon, Ore.; son, Michael Sharp, of Portland, Ore.; daughters, Darcie Sharp Galbreath (Chris), of Roseville, Calif., and Keri Pape (Jordan), of Eugene, Ore.; stepchildren, Caron Herring Thompson (Tom), of Rogue River, Ore., Chris Braun, of San Francisco, Calif., Debi Dirks, of Medford, and Denise McBrian (Michael), of Rocklin, Calif.; grandchildren, Cody Breeze, Taylor Galbreath, Braeden, Madeline and Elenor Pape; and his little dog, Pixie. He was preceded in death by his parents; and many aunts, uncles, and dear friends.
Our many thanks to our Asante Hospice team, especially Holly, Robin, and Kris. We will be forever grateful for your compassionate care and support.
A celebration of Len's life is scheduled for 11:00 a.m., Saturday, June 29, 2013, at Table Rock Fellowship, 3610 N. Pacific Hwy., Medford, OR 97501. Pastor Scott Barlow will officiate. The family will greet friends at an open house reception following the service. Please join us in sharing this special day. In lieu of flowers, donations to Table Rock Fellowship or a favorite charity would be appreciated.
Forever in our hearts
Final resting place will be Eagle Point National Cemetery. Arrangements handled by Rogue Valley Funeral Alternatives.