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Ronald Eugene Shields

October 6th, 1934 - March 19th, 2024

Ronald Eugene Shields was born on October 6, 1934, in Millinocket, Maine and passed away peacefully on March 19, 2024 in McMinnville, Oregon.


At age 11, Ron’s family moved to the west coast and settled in Renton Washington, where he spent his formative school years. He was always a skilled musician and  played in a dance band from the time he was in 8th grade with high school students at the time, known as the “Mood Makers”. He originally played clarinet as his main instrument but he began to play flute and saxophone as well.    

Upon graduating from Renton High School in Renton, Washington, in 1953, he enlisted in the US Navy, where he served for four years, and played clarinet in a ship band at one point aboard an aircraft carrier, the USS Oriskany, completing a tour of duty starting in San Francisco and having anchored in Hawaii, Yokosuka, Japan, then-British Hong Kong, and The Philippines.    

After his discharge from the Navy at Brooklyn Navy Yard and withdrawing as a petty officer third class, Ron pursued his passion for music at Washington State University in Pullman, majoring in Music Education and studying to become a band teacher. It was during his time at WSU that he met Margaret Emily Forrester, his future wife, in music history class. They were married in 1960 and shared a devoted marriage of over 63 years until Ron's passing.


Upon earning his bachelor's degree in 1962, Ron began a fulfilling career as a high school and middle school band teacher. This took him to several communities throughout his career - Grand Coulee Dam and Renton, Washington, and Forest Grove and Madras, Oregon.  He and Margaret had one daughter and two sons.


Beginning in 1963, Ron pursued his Master’s degree in music education, attending WSU during the summers, and completing it in 1970. He continued to teach junior high and elementary school band until his retirement in 1992. Margaret retired in 1994.


After retirement, Ron and Margaret enjoyed their time in Yachats, Oregon, indulging in their love for the beach. They later moved to Monmouth, Oregon, and eventually settled in McMinnville in 2005, where they could be closer to their children and grandchildren.  In 2011, they became active members of the McMinnville Cooperative Ministries church.


Ron had many hobbies including running, woodworking, and later golf. He ran and finished the Seaside Marathon and ran but did not finish the Salem Marathon. He also ran in a relay from Roseburg to Coos Bay, where his team placed first for their age group. He enjoyed making pens on his lathe and building other wooden items such as bird houses, clocks, and mirrors. When golfing, he once got a hole in one.    

In their later years, Ron & Margaret moved to The Manor at Hillside Retirement Community. Over nearly 8 years, they made many good friends there, where Ron was a resident who was always eager to help people. He delivered newspapers to people’s doors in the early morning hours.  Ron also enjoyed playing golf with friends from the McMinnville Cooperative Ministries church and volunteered to help with providing shelter for the homeless.  Ron & Margaret enjoyed classical music and attending Oregon Symphony concerts together.


Throughout his life, Ron was known for his caring and compassionate nature, always prioritizing his family. He was deeply involved in his children and grandchildren’s lives, encouraging them to pursue their interests and creating cherished memories together. He had a big heart and would occasionally buy meals for those in need.  He will be remembered for his kindness, compassion, generosity, and sense of humor.


Ronald is preceded in death by his parents, Lyndon and Margaret Shields, and his sister, Shirley Shields Vincent. He is survived by his loving wife, Margaret Emily Forrester Shields, children Lynda, Harold and daughter-in law, Tonya, Peter and daughter-in-law, Wen-Juang, and grandchildren Dylan, Ethan, Brady, and Evan.


A memorial service will be held at The Manor at Hillside Retirement Community in McMinnville, Oregon on June 8 at 2:00 PM.

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Toni Hibler

I'm so sorry to hear of this loss. Mr Shields was a favorite for band and I can still see him playing the clarinet with us. Toni Stoddard Hibler

Published April 3rd, 2024

Beverly Horttor

Remembering good times and our Madras and UMC connections. We were together May 17, 2012 at Friendsview in Newberg, Oregon. Praying for comfort for your family.

Published March 26th, 2024

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