Ilene Rae Humphreys, later Pyles, was born in Baker City, Ore., on Feb. 2, 1956. She died after a long and gradual decline from the dementia that also took her mother and her grandmother before her; and after, at the very end, a characteristic refusal to give up, long after she had every right to – in her home in Creswell, surrounded by her family, at the unfairly young age of 66, on March 12, 2022.

She lived a very good life. Her parents, Bill and Virginia Humphreys, a good preacher and his good wife, were loving and supportive, providing her with a wealth of family and friends, a warm and welcoming home and a variety of interesting places to grow up in. Born in Baker while living in tiny Richland, and then in Vale from the age of 1, they took her at 12 to San Jose, Calif., and then at 15 back to small town Oregon, to Oakland, where she would soon meet a tall and handsome boy, the basketball star, a godly son of godly people, with a charming smile, a twinkle in his eyes, and a motorcycle, and that was it for both of them for the rest of their lives. 

Ilene Humphreys and Jamie Pyles were married on Dec. 6, 1973. They bought the house they would spend the rest of their lives in a few years later, and shortly after had their first child, an opinionated redheaded girl, Jenni (later Jennifer Lang Perkins). Next was a boy, Jeff, dubiously notable mostly for remembering things he’d read in books and reading a lot of them, and then another girl, Jodi, who was pretty clearly the best of the lot in, if not every way, then most of the ones that matter most.

Jamie worked out of the shop at their house, curing the mechanical ills that beset machines in this fallen world, and Ilene raised green beans, tomatoes, and kids, with thoughtfulness and love, going so far as to homeschool the children when that was even more unusual than it is now. She had a talent for order and organization that made this pedagogical paradigm a resounding success, despite the recalcitrance of her obstreperous pupils, so much so that they would, years later, even come to be grateful (sometime after they learned to stop showing off their big fancy words in annoying ways).

She was very close to her family, the Humphreys having both a big Thanksgiving get-together and an annual family campout, events which in many families might have been reluctantly attended if at all, but which she and her brothers and sisters, and their parents, spouses, and children (almost) all (almost) always looked forward to eagerly. 

She and Jamie were lifelong, devoted, active members of the church and the life and community that it provided. They took part in and taught Sunday morning classes and weekly extracurriculars, welcoming diverse groups of people into their home for Bible studies and fellowship, hosting many a gathering of like- and unlike-minded souls for discussion, counseling, cookies, popcorn, movies, and games. Their house, in Ilene’s warm and welcoming hands, was a second home for an uncountable number of people over the years. 

Grandchildren, who were a great, much looked forward to joy to her, came somewhat late, while dementia came unreasonably early. She had far too few years to love and spoil them, and they had far too few, and were too young in the end, to understand what was being taken away from them. 

Her last years were spent in the care of her husband, Jamie, and her best child, Jodi, who looked after her with extraordinary love, grace, and generosity, allowing her to stay in her home with her family, the things she loved most in this world.

She is buried in Creswell Cemetery, less than two hundred yards from her home. There will be a memorial service at 1 p.m. on April 2 at the Creswell Church of Christ. All who knew her are welcome, as they always were.

She is preceded in death by her parents Bill and Virginia Humphreys of Douglas County, Ore., and is survived by her siblings and their spouses: Dave and Patti Jo Humphreys (Drain, Ore.), Beth and Steve Moore (Meridian, Idaho), Joel and Connie Humphreys (Oakland, Ore.), Steve and Tawni Humphreys (Sutherlin, Ore.), Lorna Humphreys (Roseburg, Ore.), Stan and Vicki Grove (La Grande, Ore.), and John and Emily Humphreys (Meridian, Idaho). 

She is also survived by her husband Jamie Pyles, children Jennifer Lang Perkins, Jeff Pyles, Jodi Pyles, and grandchildren Trevin Lang, Kaden Lang, Aurora Perkins and Lincoln Perkins.