Dr. Richard (Dick) Stanley Werner
had an infectious laugh, loved jazz and to talk about wood boats, would help give animal advice to anyone who needed it and was a leader in the Portland community. Dick never took anything for granted. He insisted on handwriting every Christmas card, enjoyed cooking meals at home for his family and friends, summer traditions at Priest Lake, and making the perfect s'mores, just to name a few. Dick lived his life with zest and love and touched countless others' lives.
His passions in life began at an early age: reading the James Herriot books about life as an English veterinarian, boating with his dad in their first Century (Seaflyte), HAM radio operator in high school, radio man in the US Navy, spent a summer assisting the veterinarian at the Barnum & Bailey Circus with the elephants, graduated from veterinarian school Ohio State (go Buckeyes) and learning to play the piano so he could ride his piano teachers' horses.
Dick's veterinary career flourished in the 1970s with his growing private practice in Raleigh Hills. He served as Oregon Zoo veterinarian and developed and found Dove Lewis Emergency Clinic. His deep friendship with Fred Meyer, founder of the retail chain, had a tremendous impact on his life. One of his friends would joke that he was one of the only veterinarians that provided weekend and holiday exams at no charge. He raised Percheron horses and took them with his show wagons to the St. Paul Rodeo. His passions were many but three stand out: Dove Lewis, Pooch Project, and Antique Classic Boat Society.
The Dove Lewis Emergency Clinic would not have existed without Dr. Werner. Dick "changed not only our community, he helped transfer the world of veterinary medicine." When Dove Lewis died, Dr. Werner and AB Lewis made Dove Lewis a reality. From the Dove website: "From one man's head, with one woman's heart, and into the soul of a community; Dove Lewis touches all of us. We are all the better for it." Dick was dedicated and devoted for the care of all animals.
Pooch Project: Mac Laren Youth Correctional Facility in Woodburn, Oregon. Joan Dalton, the founder of Project POOCH: "Once a month, Dr. Werner came to look over the dogs and teach animal care to the incarcerated male youths at Mac Laren. Dr. Werner encouraged "hands-on" learning and treated the young men as if they were in veterinary school. He would ask of one of the boys "Dr. Jones, what did you hear when you listened to your dog's heart?" He treated these boys with respect."
Antique Classic Boat Society: Dick's tenacity and passion led the ACBS to new levels. His impact in the wooden boat community will be long lasting. As president, he championed a hands-on seminar series teaching the craft of wooden boat restorations. His legacy in all communities will be remembered. "We would see Dick whenever we worked on our boats, going to seminars, visiting the museum. His tone and passion were a cornerstone of all that's good. I am sure Dick is visiting Chris Smith and Gar, getting in a debate about Reed and Prince screws!"
He married the love of his life, Louise, at the family farm in Newberg. The ceremony started fittingly with Dick and Louise arriving in a carriage pulled by Dick's beloved draft horse. Dick and Louise loved entertaining, and their home was a second home to many—where there was always something on the grill, a cool beverage in the refrigerator, and stories to be shared. He loved and supported his children, discussing politics with Erica; working on wooden boats with Andy; talking business ownership with Jenny and legal strategies with Todd. He adored spending time with his six grandchildren. Dick's leadership roles were extensive: President OVMA, President ACBS, Chapter President CWC, Zoo Board, Draft Horse Board, teaching at Oregon State Veterinary School, supporter of Portland Jazz, and special surgeries for the Wildlife Safari, just to name a few. Dick found great joy in life.
Dick was preceded in death by his parents Ethel & Harry Werner, and sister Lynne James. He is survived by his loving wife Louise; children Erica Werner Zweifel (Stephan), Northfield, MN; Andrew Werner (Doreen), Newberg, OR; Jenn Soine (Jeremy), Danville, CA; Todd Huegli (Tracy), Portland, OR;grandchildren Jason Reed (Bea), Kori Werner, Christof Zweifel, Jackson Soine, Madeleine Soine, Rowan Huegli, and nieces, Lori (Steven), and Christy.
For the health and safety of family and friends during this Covid-19 crisis, the family will plan a memorial service later this year. In accordance with Covid-19, Dick was buried near his parents in a private ceremony at Mountainside Cemetery.
The Werner family is a proud supporter of Dove Lewis Emergency Animal Hospital. If desired, memorial contributions may be made to Dove Lewis Emergency Animal Hospital through either individual donations or donating to the Dr. Richard Werner Legacy Society. https://www.dovelewis.org/donors
Thank you, Dick, for coming into our lives, for making us smile, laugh and being our friend for life. We love you. We miss you.