Dec. 16, 1945 — May 16, 2011
Paul Speck, 65, died in Bend, Ore., on May 16, 2011, from complications of ALS (a.k.a. Lou Gehrig’s disease).
Born to Gene and Dorothy Speck in Washington, D.C., Speck took his role as the “oldest child” seriously, along with a chuckle and a belly laugh. In 1955, the Speck family eventually made Davis their home at 903 Oak Ave.
Paul was an athlete, scholar, writer, singer, hiker, cyclist and fisherman. Rumor has it that Paul was given a permission slip to tell tall fish stories in Heaven. Give him some bread and a few of those huge fish he caught and the whole world could’ve been fed. This fits right into his spirtual beliefs and his respect of the imperfections of the Catholic Church. He was an altar boy, as well a man of religious integrity, who spoke with parish priests sternly when he disagreed.
He graduated from Davis Senior High School, where he lettered in three sports, and was class president. He went on to play football at USF and UC Davis, majoring in political science. He earned his law degree at the University of Oregon, and was known for being an honest and just attorney.
In 1972, Paul and his former wife, Sue, gave birth to Rebecca Speck. Becky was the only grandchild Dorothy lived to see before she died of ALS.
In 1975, Paul and his three kids, Becky, Joe and Anne, made Bend their home. Always an outdoorsman, Paul showed his children how to love and respect the great gift of nature. His photgraphs of nature were often breathtaking.
After his marriage to Sue ended, Paul married Rose Dusan,and they brought Mark Speck into the world, thus creating a big loving and learning blended family.
Paul was diagnosed with ALS in Sept. 2009, but never let the disease slow his adventures or zest for life. He traveled with family and friends to the Florida Keys and Zion National Park, and floated down the Deshutes River. He was, ironically, a die-hard Oregon Ducks football fan.
He was preceded in death by his mom, Dorothy (ALS), brothers Larry (ALS) and Stephen (SIDS), and sister Susan. His surviving sisters are Barbara Speck-Salonius and husband Eric; Peg Speck Grady; Cathy Speck (who has ALS) and wife Linda; and Mary Speck. He is also survived by his brother Jim Speck and his father Gene Speck and his wife Nancy. Throughout the tragedies that have hit the Speck family, Gene has been a sturdy and trusted lighthouse.
Along with his wife Rose, Paul leaves his children Becky Neal Speck; Joe Speck (Katie); Joe Dusan (Christy); John Dusan (Alana); Anna Speck Durgan (Jacob); Peter Dusan (Alisa); and Mark Speck (Caitlin). Grandchildren include Miyah, Hadassah, Victoria, Kyler, Genevieve, twins Colten and Riley, and Dallas, who was born several days after Paul’s death. He also has so many cousins, nieces, nephews and dear friends that mentioning them all would kill another tree in Paul’s regal forest.
A church service was held in Bend on May 19. To celebrate Paul’s Davis roots, the family invites all to a Tree Davis dedication and reception at a date and time to be decided. Contact Cathy Speck at (530) 756-8260 or [email protected] for details. Paul asked that any donations be sent to the ALS Association at http://www.alsa-or.org. Meanwhile, all are invited to sign a guestbook online at http://www.niswonger-reynolds.com.