Posted: Tuesday, Jun 11th, 2013
COQUILLE, Ore. - Tony Spenader, 75, of Coquille, Ore., formerly of Mendota, died peacefully on Jan. 19, 2013 in the care of his sons, Jeffrey and Wade, his nephew, Tom, and his good friends, Dan and Lynda Kristoffersen.
A memorial service was held on March 2 at Holy Name Catholic Church in Coquille.
Mr. Spenader was born Aug. 8, 1937 in Mendota to Frank and Neva (Bellings) Spenader. His given name was Lynn but his sister, Ardith, when asked what was her new infant brother's name, told people it was "Tony." The name stuck throughout his life. He married Lauretta Forst. She preceded him in death.
Survivors include two sons, Jeffrey (MuDon) Spenader and Wade (Elaine) Spenader; two grandchildren, Emily and Susannah; and one sister, Ardith Fritz.
He was preceded in death by his wife; one brother, Wayne; and one sister, Beverly.
Mr. Spenader met his wife while attending Ripon College in Wisconsin. The couple lived in Illinois until the army stationed Tony in San Francisco, which they loved and made their home for the next 30 years. Tony worked mainly in the book industry. He applied his love of books as a book buyer for Emporium Capwells, then worked as a wholesale book buyer for Cal-West in Oakland, commuting 80 miles a day from his home in Mountain View. In 1985, with a business partner, he owned and operated a popular newsstand in a shopping mall.
In 1992, Lauretta and Tony moved to Coquille, Ore. to begin their dream of operating a bed and breakfast. The Barton House became known as a comfortable place to stay while in Coquille. The sign read, "A bed and breakfast of casual elegance" which it surely was. In 1999, Tony and Lauretta closed the B and B and officially retired. Throughout their years in Coquille, the couple stayed active in the community. Both worked for Friends of the Coquille Library, to which they were extremely dedicated. They also found great pleasure as Rotarians, with Tony serving twice as Coquille Rotary Club president, and as an assistant governor for the Rotary Clubs of the Central Coast for three years. As Rotarians, they made trips to Mexico with Project Amigo and worked to improve the libraries in poor schools. As a Rotarian, Tony was named Coquille Citizen of the Year. Later, he was a founding member of The Sharpshooters, a local photography club. Through these organizations he made many friendships. All that knew him appreciated his sense of humor, fun-loving nature and gift of gab. He was a "people person" of the truest sense. He saw the good in people and was always there to lend a hand when anyone needed it.
Tony faced cancer, which took him way too soon, with bravery, humility and his always-present sense of humor. He will be tremendously missed.
Memorials may be directed to the Friends of the Coquille Library.