52 Ancestors: Random Fact

I have written quite a bit about my great-grandfather Chester Crowe, but the most surprised I have been in my research was learning where he died.

Chester and Myrtle Crowe, 1967.

Chester and Myrtle were big outdoors people and would go camping at all times of the year, something that is unusual for Oregon. And it was during one of these camping trips where on December 2, 1972, Chester died of a heart attack. They were camping in the Santiam Wilderness, in the Cascade Mountains.

Even more surprising, the box for hour of death on his death certificate is marked with a question mark. Myrtle woke up and found that Chester had died in his sleep. He was pronounced dead at 10 AM.

Death certificate
Chester Crowe’s death certificate.

And they weren’t camping in an RV; they were in a tent. My mom assumes they were in a campground, as Myrtle didn’t drive, but there is nothing nearby now.


Myrtle and Chester Crowe, Carol and Vickie Comstock
Myrtle and Chester Crowe with their granddaughters Carol and Vickie Comstock, c. 1972.

Oregon camping is usually limited to the summer, so seeing this on his death certificate was rather a shock.

For more about Chester, I wrote about my favorite photo, his time in the US Army, and his wedding.


Until next time,