May 10, 1927 — April 30, 2019
Thursday, May 9, 2019
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Courtesy photo

Anita Ragsdale

Anita Eggen Ragsdale passed away on April 30 in McMinnville, Ore., surrounded by family and her husband of 71 years, James B. Ragsdale. She was just days away from her 92nd birthday.

Anita Caroline was born on May 10, 1927, to Oscar and Fay Eggen, in Yellowstone National Park, where her father worked for the U.S. Park Service. Oscar was transferred to Sequoia National Park in 1930, where Anita enjoyed playing in nature with her younger brother, Armon. When she was 10, her father suffered a stroke and they returned to the family home in Absarokee, where her grandfather, Ole Eggen, homesteaded the Eggen Ranch; Oscar died 17 months later.

She attended Absarokee High School where she played basketball, piano and worked at the Elted Theater, owned by her stepfather, Arnold Howland. Anita studied journalism at the University of Montana, where she met her husband, James Ragsdale of Columbus. They moved 25 times throughout Montana, Wyoming, Utah and Oregon, settling in McMinnville in 1986. They visited Stillwater County often and remained close to friends and family throughout the region.

Throughout her life, Anita was an avid gardener, baker, and party thrower. For decades she volunteered at her churches organizing weddings, memorials, and other receptions as well as the weekly Sunday coffee hour. She was a member of the Current Events and Garden Clubs in McMinnville and was known for the lush bouquets she created from her garden and donated throughout town.

In addition to James, she is survived by her children, Vicky, Kelly, Mark and Jana Ragsdale. Her son, Steven, died in 2006. Anita kept up with all 10 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren and was a second mother to many others that enjoyed her special attention; she will be held dear in the memories of all.

A memorial service will be held in McMinnville at a later date. Anita wished to be laid to rest at the Rosebud Cemetery next to her mother, father, brother, and grandparents. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Yamhill Community Action Partnership Food Bank: www.yamhillcap.org.

Remembrances: www.everloved.com/life-of/anita-ragsdale/