Rodney Lewis Loennig, loving father, brother, uncle and friend, died Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2021, in Baker City, Ore. He was 66 years old.
Rodney was born April 16, 1955, in Baker, Ore. to parents Frank Loennig and Marjorie Marie Loennig. After graduating from North Powder High School, he moved to Eugene and obtained an associate’s degree in electronics from Lane Community College while living with his grandfather.
It was while attending North Powder High School, Rodney accompanied a friend to visit his family. The family happened to be the home of Sherry’s parents; his friend introduced Rodney to his cousin, Sherry Cairns, at her home in Baker. The two began dating shortly afterward.
Though they were apart for two years he did not let his move to Eugene stand in their way. While Rodney worked to obtain his degree as well as work full time he would make the long drive back to Baker, in his ’66 Volkswagen named “Cookie,” to see Sherry on the weekends. The month after Sherry graduated from Baker High School, they were married July 27, 1975.
The newlyweds moved to Creswell, Ore. where Rodney honed his skills with electronics before taking on a position at PeaceHealth Hospital in 1979 where he would fashion a 35-year career. He started humbly enough calibrating blood pressure cuffs and the voltage on electronic equipment. As the hospital grew and acquired more complex machines Rodney earned the opportunity to become a Radiographic Service Technician which saw him flying all over the United States from North Carolina to New Jersey, Wisconsin to California to be trained on how to service and repair the hospitals X-ray and radiation therapy machines along with anything else that seemed to fit into his job description.
During this time Rodney and Sherry welcomed their two daughters, Lisa and Cassie. Though living in the Willamette Valley, they would often take their children most summer and winter vacations back to see family and friends in the Baker Valley and surrounding areas.
Once Rodney retired in September 2016, he returned to his family’s land outside of North Powder and began to prepare it to be a permanent home for he and Sherry, who joined him once she retired the following year.
Rodney enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. He took great pride in making breakfast, “Papa’s Famous Pancakes,” for his wife, his daughters, and their families when they came to visit. His love for building and electronics never left and he would often find amusement in racing his own modified remote-control cars to the delight of his daughters and grandsons. Most days during Rodney’s retirement he would often partner with his brother Gerald to help work the timber on their neighboring properties, reminiscing about shared memories while making new ones.
In addition to Sherry and their children, Lisa Loennig-Tinker (Noah Tinker) and Cassie Loennig, Rodney is survived by two grandsons, Aiden Tinker and Dylan Ritz; his brothers Derry and Gerald; sister Helen; three nieces; and four nephews.
A celebration of life will be planned for early summer. Online condolences can be made at lovelandfuneralchapel.com.