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Month: December 2016

Celtics finish strong, win league opener

McNary senior Cade Goff drives past a pair of West Albany defenders to score two of his 14 points in a 70-62 Celtic victory on Friday, Dec. 9. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)
McNary senior Cade Goff drives past a pair of West Albany defenders to score two of his 14 points in a 70-62 Celtic victory on Friday, Dec. 9. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)

Of the Keizertimes

ALBANY—Behind a fast start and strong finish, McNary opened Greater Valley Conference play with a 70-62 victory over West Albany on Friday, Dec. 9.

“Any league win is tough,” Celtics head coach Ryan Kirch said. “On the road is tough. It doesn’t matter who you’re playing or when you’re playing them. I think what we can take from this is when you get to the playoffs, every game is going to come down to the final three minutes and your ability to finish and your ability to be mentality tough. We’re going to focus on the positives from that and enjoy tonight.”

McNary appeared it would coast in its league opener as senior Cade Goff knocked down a 3-pointer in the first 15 seconds to begin a 13-0 run before the Bulldogs were even able to get on the scoreboard with a 3 of their own with 2:05 remaining in the first quarter.

Goff also started the second quarter with a 3-pointer to stretch the Celtics lead to 21-10 before West Albany began heating up from behind the arc to stay within striking distance.

McNary led 33-24 with 2:19 remaining in the first half but the Bulldogs closed the second quarter on an 8-0 run to get within 33-32 at intermission.

Alex Martin barely played in the first half after picking up two quick fouls in the first quarter and his third less than a minute into the second. In his absence, Lucas Garvey had five points off the bench.

West Albany stayed hot in the third quarter and grabbed its first lead, 35-33, on a 3-pointer to begin the second half. Adam Harvey answered with a 3-pointer to give the lead right back to the Celtics but the Bulldogs scored seven straight to take control, 42-36.

“We probably played as poorly as we could play,” Kirch said. “Our defense wasn’t very good. I thought we rushed shots a little bit. We had too many turnovers. The way the game was called, we didn’t adjust.”

McNary needed its bench to get back on top.

Back-to-back baskets by Garvey, including a 3-pointer, got the Celtics within 44-43. After West Albany added two free throws, a Chandler Cavell layup and free throw tied the game at 46-46. Goff then gave McNary a 48-46 lead with 1:45 remaining in the third quarter.

“I thought the ball was stagnant a little bit, particularly in the second and third quarter,” Kirch said. “We had to make some adjustments. I just didn’t think we were as strong with the ball as we needed to be in the half court.”

After the Bulldogs went back on top, 56-53, with 5:09 left to play, Cavell knocked down a 3-pointer to tie the game.

Matthew Ismay then scored in the paint to put the Celtics ahead 58-56.

West Albany quickly tied the game once again but a 3-point play by Martin with 3:21 remaining gave McNary the lead for good.

“I’m pretty hyped,” said Harvey, who led McNary with 16 points. “We played good as a team. We had a sluggish part but we came back firing. We kept our composure and stayed strong.”

The Celtics went 5-for-6 from the free throw line in the final 1:25 to put away the Bulldogs.

Garvey and Goff each finished with 14 points. Ismay added 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists.

“In the long run, I think this was good for us,” Kirch said. “The final three minutes is winning time. As terrible as the first 29 minutes were, I thought our mental toughness to be able to finish at the end of the game was a real positive thing.The last couple of years we’ve lost one game each year that we probably shouldn’t have and the last couple of years that might have been this game. I thought our seniors did a nice job of coming together, leading vocally but also just going out and getting it done.”

McNary improved to 2-0 in the GVC on Tuesday, Dec. 13 by dominating North Salem on the road 74-36.

Harvey led the Celtics with 14 points and five rebounds.

Cavell had 14 points and Easton Neitzel added 11.

Martin and Goff each had nine.

The Celtics return home Friday, Dec. 16 to play Sprague at 7:15 p.m.

That time of the year

It is that time of year when people say “It’s that time of year to…” They mean it’s the time of year to be nice to others; to give to those less fortunate then ourselves.

Toys and clothing are delivered to children in need in our region. Boxes of the makings of a holiday meal are delivered to households in need ‘this time of year.’

This week’s weather should remind us that not everyone around us is warm, has an appropriate coat to face the freezing temperatures. In Salem, the Mid-Valley Community Action Agency is overseeing two warming stations. The American Legion post on Lilac Lane in north Salem will open a warming station for veterans only.

Warming stations are needed not only by those who live on the streets, but also those who, for whatever reason, have no heat in their homes. Keizer doesn’t have a big homeless population but there are those whose homes do not have adequate heat. Keizer’s organizations—especially its houses of worship—need to live their missions and faith and give a helping hand to those most in need. As the Jackie DeShannon song says: “Think of your fellow man, lend him a helping hand. Put a little love in your heart.”

There is no doubt that Keizer is generous—it provides monthly community dinners, it donates money for playgrounds and football fields. Charity cannot always be given on the donor’s schedule—we are called to offer assistance when it is needed, such as a freezing cold snap coming through.

Simonka Place in Keizer is packed and cannot act as a warming station, much as the Union Gospel Mission itself. Our community may not have a large number of people who need shelter from the cold, but surely local, centrally located churches can open their doors, arms and hearts to those who can’t just turn up the thermostat or throw another log on the fire.

The same can be true for the city and its Civic Center. Baring a scheduled event, could the conference center at the Civic Center not be available for those in need?

Society is called on during these few days of cold to be charitable and giving. We must all remind ourselves that charity and caring are not for holiday season only. People get cold in February, people are hungry in June.

Yes, it is that time of year, but ‘that time of the year’ should be year round. Lending a helping hand is a year ‘round proposition.


Community spirit is alive

To the Editor:

It is Sunday morning, the day after the Keizer Chamber Foundation Giving Basket Program’s gifts were delivered, and the morning after the Keizer Chamber of Commerce Holiday Light Parade. Both were successful.

Thank you to the Keizer Chamber Foundation, the members of both the Keizer Network of Women (KNOW) and Men of Action in Keizer (MAK),  two groups of the Keizer Chamber.

Success? How is it measured?  By the smiles on faces and tears in the eyes of parents who aren’t able to afford gifts for their children. Success is seeing families running down the street together and children dancing in the dark in anticipation of seeing Santa.  The Keizer Chamber Foundation served 377 children with the help of community and businesses.  When they said they couldn’t the Keizer Chamber of Commerce, with the support of local businesses and community did it anyway.

Your Keizer business and community volunteers working together are what make our community a wonderful place in which to live. Thank you to all who supported these events by purchasing gifts, donating time with wrapping and delivery. Thank you all who volunteered to make our parade happen.  Success isn’t measured with material things, it’s measured with memories. Success is seeing joy!

Audrey Butler

What you wish for

To the Editor:

Noam Chomsky would write, “It was ever thus,” but I am neither old nor smart enough to cite the historical precedent. What I can say is that never in my memory has the repudiation of government of, for and by the people been so obvious, so “in your face peasants.”

One look at the good old plutocrats club that will make up the Trump cabinet should be enough to have Trump voters wondering “Seriously, is this what I wanted?”

So much for populism—for Medicare bargaining to lower drug prices, (amendment killed with objection from big pharma pawn Senator Roy Blount)—for 35 percent tariffs on manufacturers moving out of the U.S. (easier to give a $7 million taxpayer-funded bribe to a billion dollar corporation).  And what should be the last straw—the appointment of  a climate-change denier to head the EPA.  What’s next? Putin pal Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson for secretary of state? (Oh, wait that could happen.)  Still a few weeks until Trump takes office, but so far his election is a painful lesson in being careful what you wish for.

Martin Doerfler

The green truck


It was the Christmas of 1952, I was 8 years old.  There was only one item on my Christmas list that year, it was a yellow scale model of a log truck made by the Toy Company.  It was about 18 inches long with the trailer retracted, almost thirty inches with the trailer loaded with logs. It was magnificent piece of work.  The front wheels actually turned with a horn like knob mounted on the hood, like a hood ornament.  The wheels seemed like they were inflated though I doubt they really were.

I wanted this log truck unlike anything else in my life. My dad was a logger, and it was every son’s dream to, in some way, emulate his father. I needed that truck. What made matters a little envious for me, was that my cousins had three of them.  Their father—my uncle—was also a logger.  Yes, when we visited I would get to play with them but it wasn’t the same as having one of your own.

I made my Christmas list, and made sure Santa knew exactly what I wanted. Now, an eight-year-old boy knows very little about family finances.  We were never poor. I always had food, clothing, a dry roof and plenty of toys to keep me busy.  This particular year, things must have been a little lean because there were a lot of beans and ground beef or venison, as it were.  I did not particularly care for venison burger.  However, an eight-year-old boy doesn’t make the association between lean times and Santa’s ability to bring the items on his Christmas list.

The long-awaited night arrived.  The presents were stacked neatly under the Christmas tree.  My concern was somewhat aroused by the fact that there was not, under the tree, a present big enough to contain the beloved log truck I had desperately awaited for. It was not unusual for parents to wait until the last minute to bring out additional gifts, some unwrapped with just a bow.  Surely this was to be the case.

Mom suggested that my sister and I go to our rooms for awhile.  Aha…that was to insure time to uncover or deliver to the tree those last minute surprise gifts.  I knew it; I could hardly stand it, waiting for mom to give the word to come out.  Finally, after what seemed like ages, mom announced Santa had come and we could come out of our room and see what Santa had left on our behalf.

I charged out of my room heading for the tree, eyes keenly surveying all the gifts, looking, looking…looking…Hmmm. It wasn’t there. “Is this all?”  I asked.

“What do you mean, Is this all?” said mom.  “Looks to me like Santa has done well.”   

Trying to hide my disappointment, I agreed. We proceeded to open gifts, one at a time, oohing and ahhing over each item opened.

I don’t remember any specific items I got that Christmas. I do know that the yellow log truck was not one of them.  As the last present was open, dad said, “Oops, I forgot, there’s one more.”

And off he went out the door to the shop. He was back in a flash and in his hands was…well, it wasn’t yellow, it was green, and it wasn’t the one I had hoped for.  But there in dad’s hands was a green log truck…as he handed it to me he said, “Be a little careful, I’m not sure the paint is completely dry yet.”

So this is what he had been doing in the shop those cold evenings.  I set the truck down on the floor and just looked at it.  It wasn’t what I expected.  I wasn’t sure whether to be happy or sad. I looked it over carefully. It had genuine rubber wheels, with a moveable and adjustable trailer. It looked pretty authentic carved and cut with detail. Impressive—and dad had made it just for me.

The next morning I couldn’t wait to try it out and try it out I did.  The ground was cold and frozen outside but when you got to haul logs you got to haul logs.  Well, I hauled a lot of logs on that green log truck. I believe I literally wore it out!  I never did get a yellow Toy Company log truck…I never even thought about it after that.  I had a green log truck, custom made, just for me.

I think back on that Christmas and realize how special that gift was. I didn’t get what I wanted but got what I needed.  That’s the way God, like a father, works.  God always deals with our needs, seldom our wants. What I needed on that Christmas was a gift from my dad, created and made by his own hands which illustrated the depth and fullness of his love for me.  A yellow, Toy Company Log truck would have been nice but would not have had the same impact or carried the same message. I’m eternally grateful for the ‘green trucks’ in my life.

This Christmas, don’t be surprised if you find a ‘green truck’ under the tree for you.  It may not be what you want but it most likely will be what you need…consider yourself blessed as I do.

(Reverend Curt McCormack is director of the Keizer Community Food Bank.)

Sanctuary cities an open door for problems

Reactions to the election of Donald J. Trump are mixed. Nevertheless, one of his promises stands tall among hopes for this writer.  Trump the campaigner said he will block, on the day he enters the Oval Office, the immigration executive orders issue by the Obama administration.  This would be welcome news although cabinet members from Goldman Sachs and military hawks cause considerable alarm about follow-through from statements made while Trump was in campaign mode.

Keep in mind, also, that any reversals across the land will not be welcomed in cities declared “sanctuaries” by the elected officials in them.  These “leaders” have wrongfully argued that immigration law enforcement is racist and bigoted  but have had self-centered reasons for doing so.

Lately, too, most disturbing because it’s close to home, Oregon State University’s president, Ed Ray, has publically declared that he seeks OSU’s campus as a sanctuary campus and, worse, he will not comply with U.S. federal law.  Mr. Ray, it’s strongly encouraged, should find work overseas since he apparently wants to be around foreigners so much and has obviously been too long at OSU as he thinks he owns it.

Whatever the case, the argument has enabled elected officials in “sanctuary cities” to impose their idiocy on the residents under their authority.  In fact, what they do with this falseness is facilitate the growth and development of enclaves of terror in our nation.

There are many matters that the Trump administration should address and do so within his first 100 days in office—one would be to eliminate these lawless safe havens. They have become easily used by illegal aliens and criminals, fugitives and possibleterrorists, to evade the inspection process conducted at ports of entry where they’d otherwise be subject to arrest and rejection.

We should wake-up to the fact that sanctuary cities do not provide protections to law-abiding residents who, too often, become victims to the crimes committed by these men and women who’ve not obtained legal permission to be in the United States.  Sanctuary cities endanger every person, everywhere in the entire United States, as they just as easily commit their crimes in these cities (and on campuses, too) as outside of them.

Our borders and immigration laws are the nation’s first line of defense against international terrorists, transnational criminals, fugitives from justice and those foreign nationals who come here to end work opportunities for Americans who thereby lose their jobs and paychecks.  Meanwhile, the Immigration and Nationality Act, when read, quickly dispel the bogus claim that the U.S. immigration laws discriminate: They apply the same to all persons not legally here regardless of race, religion, ethnicity and place of origin.

Every American wants the United States to be safe and secure. Meanwhile, the sanctuary cities and campus participants force upon us those persons who come to our country illegally, making them too often a threat to life and limb.  Sanctuary status is lame, misguided and a death-wish.

(Gene H. McIntyre’s column appears weekly in the Keizertimes.)

Will Woodruff

W. Woodruff
W. Woodruff

Salem comedian Will Woodruff died Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016.

Woodruff was a poker dealer who worked around the country including events like the World Series of Poker. He was co-founder of the Willamette Valley’s Funniest Person Contest.

He is survived by his mother, Shelley Woodruff of Keizer and two brothers Craig and Ronald.

A GoFundMe campaign has been set up in his memory to cover cremation and funeral costs, it can be found at Any amount received over the stated goal will be put toward a memorial in his name.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18, at Capitol City Theater, 210 Liberty Street S.E.

Karen Sue (Leavitt) Choate

Karen Sue (Leavitt) Choate, a resident of Avamere Court, passed away Thursday, Dec. 7.

Karen was born to Jacob Hamblin Leavitt and Anna Minerva Potter on Jan. 30, 1943, in Las Vegas. She often recalled the family sitting on the porch and watching mushroom clouds of atomic bombs tested fifty miles of her home north.

When she was 18, Karen met an airman from Stayton, Ore., stationed at Nellis Air Force Base. She and Chuck Choate were married July, 8, 1961. Upon his discharge they moved to Oregon where lived in Salem, Corvallis, Hillsboro and Keizer during the last 55 years. Together they raised their son, Kevin.

In July 2006, she moved to  Avamere Court at Keizer and there is no doubt that she lived as long as she did because of the quality, professionalism and love of the Avamere staff.

She is survived by her husband, Chuck Choate; son, Kevin Choate; daughter in-law Zoie Choate;  grandchildren Charleigh, Paul and Amber Choate; and great granddaughter Audrey Choate.

Visitation will be on Friday, Dec. 16, from 1 to 4 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 17, from 11 a.m. till service time at 2 p.m. at Keizer Funeral Chapel.

Karlin “Karl” Chambers

A Memorial Service is planned for 3:00 pm, Sunday Dec. 18th at the Unitarian Universalist Church 5090 Center St. NE Salem, OR.  Assisting the family is Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service.

Chimney smolders at funeral home

Firefighters cut into an exterior wall to reach the crematorium chimney at Keizer Funeral Chapel Monday, Dec. 12. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)
Firefighters cut into an exterior wall to reach the crematorium chimney at Keizer Funeral Chapel Monday, Dec. 12. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

Of the Keizertimes

A chimney fire in the crematorium at Keizer Funeral Chapel on River Road North, kept crews from throughout the region busy Monday, Dec. 12.

The Keizer Fire District, Marion County Fire District No. 1 and Salem Fire Department all responded to the call that came in shortly after 5:30 p.m. and remained on the scene for several hours making sure it was doused.

Firefighters arrived on the scene to smoke coming out from eaves all around the building, but no visible flames. The source of the smoke was determined to be the chimney of the business’ crematorium.

“It was glowing red hot and there was wood frame around it and that was beginning to smolder. The ceiling is 10 foot high, but there is an attic space that we had to get into to get at the chimney,” said Chief Jeff Cowan, of the Keizer Fire District, about 90 minutes into the battle. “It’s not real complex, and the smoke is a good color now.”

A tile roof and thick siding complicated the attack and a large section of the exterior wall had to be removed in the hours that followed the initial call.

The funeral director noticed the smoke as he was leaving for the evening and got the one remaining employee out of the building.

“He reported having trouble with the retort of the crematorium where they put the bodies in throughout the day,” said Anne-Marie Storms, KFD spokesperson. “They shut it down and tried to cool it down, but in the meantime this occurred.”

Repair technicians had already been scheduled to come out and look at the problem the following day.

In all, seven engines, four medic units, one ladder truck, a support vehicle and a duty officer responded to the fire.

Storms said it probably seemed like a lot for drivers as they passed, but “just getting to the chimney is wearing out a lot of our guys.”

Cowan and Storms reminded city residents to have their chimneys inspected and cleaned annually before using them and to check smoke detectors.