Oliver Warren Wentz lived a meaningful life. On June 7th, he was called to greener pastures at the age of 83. He passed at the Saint Alphonsus hospital in Boise, Idaho. Oliver had many names to his family and friends, Olly, papa, dad and the occasional “Damit Oliver.”
Papa was born in Warren, Idaho on March 7th, 1936 as the only boy of five children born to Charles and Ester Wentz. The Wentz family followed work and moved to Boise, then down to Downieville, where Oliver graduated high school.
If you ever spent time with Olly, you would have quickly figured out the man was full of talents and learned trade skills. Most of the skills were developed from his plethora of jobs he worked. Starting at a young age he did garbage pick up, then worked as a meat cutter in the market, a framer building houses, he even worked as a masonry. He built many of the brick walls and foundations in Downieville. Papa was the lead mechanic for the Wentz family, quite frankly he could fix anything with wheels. However, his most talented job was running his CAT, making roads. He absolutely loved building roads, and operating his dozer. He could make the large piece of equipment dance through the dirt and put the dirt exactly the way he wanted. Oliver’s last and final job was raising sheep and cattle, and farming. He was always proud and eager to show off his lamb crop or hay crop. He would spend hours just watching the sheep and cattle graze the luscious grass. To him, this job was a lifestyle that he passed on to all of his children and grandchildren.
Even though he worked all of his life, he had quite a few passions. Oliver loved the outdoors, he spent most of his life hunting, fishing, farming and herding sheep through some of the most beautiful country. His greatest passion of them all was eating good home cooked meals. His famous saying was, “Some people eat to live, I live to eat!” Oliver loved gathering with friends and family over great food, which is how the family plans to celebrate his life.
Oliver met the love of his life, Joanna May Wentz in Downieville. They married on December 31,1957. With empty hearts, Oliver leaves behind his children, Dianna Taylor, Larry Wentz, Leanna Wentz and Don Wentz. His grandchildren will forever miss their papa who include, Dustin Taylor, Kayla Coughlin, Bretta Wentz, Amalia Wentz, Ashley Taylor, Trevor Wentz, Oliver Wentz, Hannah Wentz, Sawyer Wentz, Basey Jo Dawson and Karlee Wentz.
All those who knew Oliver are invited to join at the Downieville Cemetery on June 15th at 11am. The family plans on hosting a potluck at the community center following the service. Please bring your favorite salad or dessert. The Wentz family will also host a get-together June 22 at 4 p.m. on the Enterprise ranch, 68865 Elk Mountain Road. All are welcome. Please bring a dish to share. Please consider joining the family in these special times of celebration of Oliver’s Life.