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1939 Loretta 2023

Loretta Jean Cheney

May 27, 1939 — June 25, 2023


Loretta J. Woodward-Cheney, the oldest child of Stanley John Helser and Marjorie Frances Bronkey, was born in Portland, Oregon on May 27, 1939, and passed June 25, 2023.  As a child, she lived mostly in the Beaverton, Portland area, graduating from Grant High School in 1958. In February of 1958, she joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In January 1960, she married Richard H. Merrow. She worked for Tektronix (1959-1964) and then started a day nursery, caring for the children of employees from Tektronix for 8 years (1964-1972).  After divorcing Richard Merrow, she moved to Nehalem, Oregon, where she and her children started over.

Loretta worked at Cannon Beach Bakery from 1973-1977. In 1978, she started working at the Wheeler Inn and did restaurant work for Neil Jamison for 13 years. She then proceeded to work with her sister in Adult Foster Care for 5 years. In May of 1988, she married Charles Ord Woodward. She and Charles had a wonderful life together. They spent many years traveling to Alaska and hunting in Eastern Oregon. They even built a cabin together with the help of their children.

Loretta enjoyed caring for the elderly, as it brought her great joy and fulfillment. In 2002, she started working for the Rinehart Clinic in Wheeler, Oregon. She worked with numerous pharmaceutical companies getting free medication for patients that couldn't afford them. In 2004, she received the award for Outstanding Contribution to Rural Health in the State of Oregon. She then retired in January of 2013.

After retiring, she moved to Warrenton, Oregon to be closer to her family. In 2015, she met Lyle Cheney. Both Loretta and Lyle had lost their loved ones in 2012. They later married and their relationship filled an emptiness they both felt and brought much happiness to one another, proving that God doesn't feel that man should be left alone.

Loretta is survived by her sisters, Marilyn Joyce Green and Nadine Marie Helser; and brother, Stanley George Helser (Pam); her children, Roxanne Marie Hartley (George) and Darren Matthew Merrow (Shelly); many additional children from both the Woodward and Cheney families; and so many wonderful grand and great-grandchildren. Loretta thought of all her grandchildren the same. Her love for each one was priceless.


A graveside service will take place 11:00 a.m. Saturday, July 1, 2023, at the Sutton Cemetery, 841 Sutton Cemetery, Rexburg, Idaho 83440. Services entrusted to Lindquist’s Syracuse Mortuary, 869 South 2000 West, Syracuse, Utah.


In lieu of flowers, Loretta requested that mourners donate to the Rinehart Clinic in Wheeler, Oregon.


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