Richard David Sanger



Richard David Sanger went peacefully to be with our Lord on April 24, 2009 at the age of 77 with his family surrounding him.

Richard was born on December 5, 1931 in Duluth, Minnesota, to Theodore and Victoria Sanger as the 7th of twelve children. The family relocated to Bend, Oregon in 1948. Richard joined the U.S. Air Force and began a career that he loved, and that would take him and his future family on many travels. He met and married the love of his life, Kathleen Lucas, on June 4, 1955 while in Bend. They immediately were transferred to Larson AFB, Washington where their first child was born. Richard and Kathleen were blessed with five more children in the years to follow.

Richard was a proud retired Veteran of the Armed Forces, a career that he cherished. Enlisting in the United States Air Force in 1950, he was on Active Duty during the Korean conflict, the Vietnam War, as well as at the height of the Cold War. His intelligence, knowledge and dedication to his career led to his appointment as a Master Jet Engine instructor for Air Training Command. There he taught pilots and technicians at Field Training Detachments on some of the latest technology engines in the Air Force inventory. His assignments were many and brought him to places such as Germany, and numerous stateside bases including bases in Delaware, California, Kansas and Hickam AFB, Hawaii (all with his family). After retiring in 1971, he was often overheard to say that he'd "go back into the Air Force in a minute if they would let him".

But certainly, Richard's proudest achievement was his 53-year marriage to Kathleen, and his six children. He told anyone who would listen how "proud" he was of us, and how much we meant to him. Richard enjoyed boating, fishing and hunting with his wife and sons, playing the slots in Reno, cruises and traveling abroad - compliments of his daughter, Carolyn - and was a passionate reader of all things history or military. He also loved family gatherings, especially when all of his children could be together.

After retiring, Richard moved his family to Sams Valley, Oregon, where he built our home on a 5-acre property over a period of several years - while also working at White City Plywood, and later at Interstate Tractor. He and Kathleen raised their children while living in Sams Valley; then "downsized" to a home in Central Point in 2000.

Richard is survived by his wife, Kathleen; his daughter,

Colleen Simchuk (George) of Bend, OR; David Sanger (Loretta) of Rogue River, OR; Carolyn Clark (David) of Concord, CA; Russell Sanger (Lori) of Gold Hill, OR; Corinne Egle (Brent) of Clayton, CA; and Dale Sanger (Rebecca) of Meridian, ID; 12 grandchildren (Jennifer, Jonathan, Jacqueline, Kaitlin, Benjamin, Kristen, Tamala, Garrett, Charissia, Jordan, Danielle and Devin); and six great-grandchildren (Alexandra, Angelina, Gabriella, Christina, Jamison and Summer). He is also survived by his sister, Carol Clark of Medford, OR and his brother, James Sanger of White City, OR. He was preceded in death by his parents, his beloved brothers (especially Ken, Art and Ted); his sisters Joyce and Patty, and his grandson David Christopher Hays.

The family offers a special thanks to Fathers Michael Walker and Jim Clifford for their prayers and support, and to Dr. Kendall Michels and Dr. Bruce Patterson, the nursing staff at Rogue Valley Memorial Hospital, and especially Sandy

Johnson, RN and Cheryl Kolverson of Social Services for their wonderful care, compassion and concern.

Richard was generous, giving and loving and had an incredible sense of humor. He was also a very private person who loved his Lord, his Country and his Family. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Shepherd of the Valley Catholic Church Building Fund in Richard's memory. A viewing will be held for family and friends at Conger-Morris Funeral Chapel at 800 S Front Street in Central Point, OR on Sunday, May 3rd from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. The funeral Mass will be held on Monday, May 4th at 10:30 a.m. at Shepherd of the Valley Catholic Church at 600 Beebe Road, Central Point, OR. Graveside services with full military honors will follow at 2:00pm at the VA National Cemetery in Eagle Point, OR.