Bruce Douglas Sawin, of Toledo, Oregon passed away after a brief illness on February 15, 2018, in Vancouver, WA. at the age of 50.
Bruce was born in Enterprise, Oregon to Peter and Kay Sawin. He was the second of 5 children. He spent his youth roaming his hometown of Joseph, playing baseball with his siblings, fishing in Wallowa Lake and area creeks, and hunting with his dad down various trails around Wallowa County. He also spent many summers moving sprinkler pipe for the Alford family. Bruce attended Joseph High School, graduating there in 1985.
After high school, Bruce joined the United States Army. During that tour of service, he spent time in Germany. He became a specialist private as a mechanic – working on tanks and other heavy equipment. When he would call the family at home, he usually woke them all up at 5 a.m. and talked to everyone – before he’d pass the phone off to one of his buddies so they could talk to someone back in the States. He enjoyed visits to Oktoberfest, and missed seeing commercials on TV. He said his time was not always easy, but he was willing to serve – even when he dropped the tank track on his finger and had to be out of commission until it healed.
Once he got out of the service he moved to Pendleton where he attended Blue Mountain Community College. He graduated from BMCC with a degree in Automotive Technology in 1992. During his time at BMCC he was serving in the Oregon National Guard. In 1993, he reenlisted in the Army. He was stationed at Fort Sill Oklahoma, serving as a mechanic. It was while he was stationed in Fort Sill, that his oldest daughter Gabby was born. Once Bruce’s tour was over, he and his family returned to Oregon, settling in Toledo, Oregon, where his youngest daughter Morgan was born. They spent time living in Idaho and California, but Toledo and Joseph were where Bruce was the most happy.
Bruce made Toledo his home for the last years of his life. He enjoyed spending time on the beaches, reading, doing puzzles, listening to Blazer games and heavy metal music, and spending time with his beloved daughters. His daughters and his time in the Army were great sources of pride for him. Bruce made no bones about being a Vet, or about his love for his girls.
Bruce is survived by his daughters Gabby and Morgan; parents Peter and Kay Sawin; 4 siblings: Beth (Vic), Virginia, Michele and Jason (Heather); nephews Victor and Zane, numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and extended family. He is also survived by his cat, Sam.
At this time, there are no services planned. In his memory, the family would appreciate donations to Disabled American Veterans (DAV). Their website is: www.dav.org. If you wish to send a message to the family: PO Box 516, Joseph OR 97846.