|Birth: ||Dec. 12, 1923|
|Death: ||Jan. 8, 2010|
The Eugene Register-Guard
Lane County, Oregon
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Bob Nixon of Junction City passed away on January 8, 2010. To honor Bob, friends are invited to gather at Monroe High School on Saturday, January 23rd at 11:00. Highlights of Bob's remarkable life will be shared with lunch following.
Bob Nixon was born to farmers Emery and Anna Nixon on the rim rock near Redmond Oregon on December 12, 1923. Due to difficult economic conditions and an exceptionally hard winter freeze, the farming family moved to the Harrisburg area during the Great Depression.
Emery Nixon and oldest son Ed hitched a team of horses to a wagon load of possessions, one heifer calf and dreams of a better life in the Willamette Valley. They headed over the Cascades followed by Anna, daughter Myrtle and little 8 year old Bobbie in their circa 1922 Buick. The tiny caravan met at the McKenzie Pass, ate Anna's prepared meal and pressed on, ultimately arriving near Harrisburg about ½ mile south of the Mennonite Church.
The Nixons located 240 acres of leased land and began farming again. Life was hard but everyone pitched in and the children were able to attend school in Alford and Harrisburg. In 1939, a gentleman named Jim Jacobs approached Emery with a proposal to work his land in Monroe and another move ensued. This relocation was to the old Zeroff place north of Monroe from where Bob graduated high school in1942.
Bob and Roberta Jean Holton were married on June 17, 1945 in the McFarland church north of Monroe. In 1946, Mr. Jacobs offered additional leased land to work on Hulbert Lake Road. Long hours prevailed with both Bob and Jean running equipment, raising livestock, canning food and barely getting by. Eventually, they were able to save some cash and, along with a gift from Jean's father, were able to put a down payment on 152 acres. During those years Bob and his father were farming together and renting more land. As Emery aged and downsized, Bob and Jean took over the operation which, by the 60's, had grown to over 4,000 acres. Daughters Barbara and Betty were always a part of the team whether it involved hunting nails in fence rows, picking fruit or, later, operating equipment.
As the Nixon Farm grew, so did Bob's involvement in community and agricultural issues. Local memberships included President of the Junction City PTA, Junction City High School Budget Committee, Lions Club of Monroe and Junction City, the Long Tom Grange, Harrisburg Museum Board and the Monroe Museum Board.
Bob was a leader in state and national agribusiness organizations. He served as President of the Oregon Ryegrass Growers Association, Chairman of the Oregon Wheat Commission, President of the Oregon Wheat Growers League, and President of the Agribusiness Council of Oregon. He was a member of the Oregon Seed Growers League Board, USDA Stabilization and Conservation Board, Agriculture Council of Oregon, Oregon Board of Agriculture, Junction City Water Control District Board, and the Agribusiness Council of America Board.
An avid supporter of Oregon State University and its agribusiness curriculum, Bob was a member of the OSU Dean of Agriculture Advisory Committee, OSU Foundation and OSU Foundation Real Property Committee. Bob and Jean endowed the Nixon Chair of Agriculture at the University. Of all his achievements, the honor of which he was most proud was the Distinguished Service Award bestowed on him by Oregon State in June, 1982.
Bob journeyed to the USSR on behalf of the Department of Agriculture to support the People to People Program promoting better understanding and the sharing of valuable agricultural information between the two nations. Bob and Jean visited the Wheat Research center in Obregon, Mexico and worked on wheat production with Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Dr. Norman Borlaug. Other travels included Japan, China, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Australia, Fiji, Canada and New Zealand.
In addition to wife, Jean, Bob is survived by daughter Barbara Cutter and her husband David of Palm Desert, CA and daughter Betty Marguth and her husband Jerry of Junction City.
Arrangements have been made by Murphy-Musgrove Funeral Home of Junction City. In lieu of flowers, the family prefers a donation to any of the following:
Harrisburg Museum, P.O. Box 615 Harrisburg, Or 97446
Monroe Museum, P.O. Box 177 Monroe, Or 97456
Heartland Humane Society, 398 SW Twin Oaks Circle Corvallis, OR 97333.
Rest Lawn Memorial Park
Created by: Jan
Record added: Jan 12, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 46605060
Beloved member of The Long Tom Grange|
Added: Mar. 27, 2010
Successful farmer & agri-businessman|
Added: Jan. 14, 2010