Opal Elizabeth (Ballard) DeOss peacefully passed away at Mid-Columbia Medical Center in The Dalles, Ore., at the age of 90. The people she loved best in the world were with her.
She was born August 15, 1927, in Meridian, Idaho, to Fred and Bessie Ballard. She grew up on a farm in Idaho with her parents and younger sister, Helen. She graduated from high school and met her future husband, Lyle DeOss, in Caldwell, Idaho. They were married there on Sept. 18, 1947.
Opal and Lyle traveled by bus to Florida in 1948 when he was drafted into the Army Air Force. They weren’t there long before they returned to Idaho, where they worked at a lot of different jobs. Some of their best stories are of topping beets and stringing hops and they even lived in a covered wagon and herded sheep in Idaho. They often traveled with her parents, Fred and Bessie, and her sister and brother-in-law, Helen and George Emmons.
In 1949, their first daughter, Sharron, was born in Nampa, Idaho. Two years later, they had a daughter in Roseburg, Ore., Katherine, who died shortly after birth. Three years later, they had a son in Hood River, Ore., Richard, who also died shortly after birth. In 1956, they had their last child, Deborah, born in The Dalles. Opal and Lyle settled in The Dalles for good in 1955 when Lyle went to work on The Dalles Dam.
In 1962, Opal and Lyle purchased the house on Eighth Street that they have lived in ever since. They enjoyed traveling after Lyle retired. They went to Hawaii several times, traveled around the southwest, and visited New York City in 1999 and went to the top of the World Trade Center. And even though Opal never learned to swim, she bravely went on sea cruises to Alaska and Mexico with her family.
Opal is survived by her loving husband, Lyle; daughters, Sharron Bisland and Debbie LaFond, son-in-law Jack LaFond and sister Helen Staab, all of The Dalles. She is greatly loved by her granddaughter, Shawna Harris, The Dalles; and two grandsons, Ben Bisland, Warm Springs, Ore., and Nick LaFond, Portland, Ore. Opal also has 10 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandson.
In her later years, Opal enjoyed working in the large garden that she and Lyle had. For years, she knitted and donated 50 stocking caps every Christmas to the Salvation Army. She loved having pizza every Saturday with family and she loved her grand dogs, Harley, Maggie and Teddy.
A celebration of life will be held at a later time.
Information from The Chronicle and our advertisers (Want to add your business to this to this feed?)