Gary Dean Wellbaum

June 1, 1953 - December 16, 2009



A Celebration of Life for Gary Dean Wellbaum, 56, of Arago, will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Monday, December 21, 2009, at the Arago Community Church. Pastor Tom Morris will officiate.



Gary was born on June 1, 1953, in Oregon City. He died December 16, 2009, in Arago. He attended Southern Oregon University and received his Masters Degree in Education. Gary was in the U.S. Air Force for three years being stationed in Taiwan and Edwards A.F.B.



He married Penny Mitchell on May 2, 1981. A few years later he began his teaching career in special education. He taught in Gresham, Central Point, Gold Hill, Bandon, and Myrtle Point and was currently teaching at the Harding Learning Center in Coos Bay. Gary was a very passionate teacher. He and his students worked very closely with the O.D.F.& W. and the Noble Creek Fish Hatchery in impacting the Oregon fisheries. He was also very active in Northwest Youth Corps in sponsoring youth to attend summer work programs. He was just recently named Educator of the Year from S.O.L.V. In his spare time he loved to go fishing, camping and playing golf with his family and friends.



Gary is survived by his wife Penny of Arago; son, Keith of Salem and his children Kaiana and MaKenna; son, Kevin and his wife Amber of Talent and their children Nash and Kemper; parents, Irv and Dorothy Brunner of Talent; brothers, Robbie Wellbaum and his wife Shannon of Colorado; Kevin Wellbaum and wife Maki of Seattle; Jim Brunner and his wife Jen of Bend; sister, Tracy Burns and her husband Vern of Eagle Point; best friend, Doug Litwiller of Medford. He also has many surrogate sons and daughters, numerous other relatives and close friends.



He was preceded in death by two sons; Sean and Jeremy and his grandparents.



The family suggests memorial contributions to Northwest Youth Corps, 2621 Augusta, Eugene, OR 97403 OR Noble Creek Fish Hatchery, 93638 Green Acres Lane, Coos Bay, OR 97420.



Arrangements are under the direction of Amling/Schroeder Funeral Service - Coquille Chapel, 541-396-3846.