Edith Marie PICKENS
Edith Marie PICKENS
  • July 12, 1925 - September 3, 2017
  • Bend, Oregon

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Edith Marie Pickens went home to be with the Lord on September 3, 2017 at the age of 92. Edith was born July 12, 1925 in Wolf Summit, West Virginia. She is survived by her sons, Bill & wife Kathy Pickens, Tom Pickens, Chris and wife Sandy Pickens; 4 grandchildren: Jenny Pickens Fisk and Husband, Dave; Wendi Pickens Dion, Scott Pickens and wife Kelly; Stephanie Pickens Middleton and husband, Aaron; and 8 great-grandchildren: Dean & Logan Fisk; Cori, Shelby, & Brendon Dion; Lela Pickens, and Kelsey & Sara Middleton.
Edith was the fourth of five children born to Hurbert Ray Hurst and Alta Maud Williams Hurst. She had 3 brothers: Paul, Tom and Scott; and a sister, Mildred; all who preceded her in death.
Edith was raised on a 180 acre farm back in the holler of West Virginia. All the children had chores and her chore was to clean the house. She switched with her brother, Tom, who milked the cows because she would rather work outside than inside. Edith graduated from Tazwell High School in 1943.
The story goes that after high school, she went along for the ride with her best friend and mother who were taking her daughter to Fredericksburg, Virginia to work at an airplane factory. When they got there, her friend talked her in to staying with her and going to work. She had not intended on staying, but when a job was offered, she accepted. Her first job was repairing bombers coming back from North Africa. Later she installed radar equipment in fighter aircraft at Quantico, Virginia. By all intents she was a "Rosie the Riveter" during World War 2. She met Earle Pickens, a US Marine while he was stationed at Quantico. They got married on September 25, 1945 in Fredericksburg.
After Earle and his brother Don were discharged from the Marines, they planned on moving back to Oregon. Before they could head west, Earle had to wait for Edith to finish her shift at the aircraft plant.
During their drive across the United States, Earle and Don jokingly began telling Edith stories of the wild Indians and Tipi's that she would see when they arrived in Oregon. Interestingly enough, one of their stops was in Baker, Oregon; staying at the Baker Hotel. It just so happened that when they reached Portland, the local Indian Tribes were having a Pow Wow at the Delta Park in North Portland. The Pow Wow consisted of Indians dancing and a tipi camp. After all of Earle and Don's stories, this was just what Edith expected and the guys were both in shock.
Edith and Earle started their family in 1947 with the birth of their first son, Bill; followed by Tom in 1948 and Chris in 1949. Needless to say they had their hands full.
Edith was a housewife, cub scout den mother, and room mother until her youngest, Chris was in High School. She went on to work at Omark Industries as a cutter grind operator, grinding chainsaw teeth. She worked at Omark/Blount for 23 years, retiring in 1986.
During retirement, Edith and Earle loved to travel. They drove their motor home through Oregon and across the United States several times with family and friends. They cruised through the Panama Canal and drove to Alaska