Gene Roark, known by his CB handle as Casey Jones, passed away at the age of 87 in Baker City, Oregon, on September 22, 2017. He was surrounded by his loved ones. He was the son of Houston and Ola Roark, and grew up in Eastern Oregon
Gene drove a truck for over 40 years without a single ticket or accident. He once even backed a triple load trailer 6 miles to get to the highway when the road was closed due to flooding!
Upon retirement, Gene could be spotted many mornings drinking coffee and giving the waitresses a ‘bad’ time. He was known for his sense of humor and making everyone feel like they were important.
Gene was an avid sports fan. He enjoyed playing and watching football, basketball, and baseball. His all-time favorite teams were the Portland Trailblazers and the Seattle Mariners. He gave up the opportunity for a career in major league baseball to marry his high school sweetheart, Florence. Together they had three children and adopted one. He shared his love of sports with his family. He did his best to attend every ball game, school recital and county fair his children and grandchildren were in.
During his free time, Gene liked to play cribbage and solitaire. He also enjoyed taking care of the animals and irrigating his pastures. Everyone who has been around him knows his love for taking rides and getting stuck. According to his son when riding with ‘Grumpy’, “You don’t need 4-wheel drive. You only need a shovel and a chain.”
Gene had a life that would make many envious.
Gene is survived by his wife of 68 years, Florence; his four children, Harold Roark and his wife Barbara; Helen Roark-Pass and her husband Tom; Arinda Roark-Hall; Tami Roark-Anderson and her husband Ben; and nephew Bill Berry and his wife Sue. He is also survived by his eight grandchildren Mindy Pass-Edison, Christina Pass-Harmon, Toby Hall, Ty Hall, Sean Roark, Kelly Roark, Elizabeth Roark, and Talan Anderson, sixteen great-grandchildren, four great- great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, October 7th, 2:00 PM at the home of the Roarks & Passes followed by a BBQ. 39319 Pocahontas Road, Baker City, OR 97814.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Esther Chapter #11 for the Masonic and Eastern Star Home Endowment Fund, where daughter Arinda resides, or the United Methodist Church in Baker City, Oregon.