The Curry Coastal Pilot

Betty Starnes Major, 75, of Brookings, passed away at Sutter Coast Hospital in Crescent City on Oct. 12, 2011, after a lengthy illness.

Betty writes: "I was born on September 24, 1936, in Emporia, Kansas, to John and Gladys Barrett, the last of six children. Only one sister, Norma Aulston (Luke) of Newcastle, Calif., survives. I am survived by sons William Starnes (Patricia) of Aloha, and Robert Starnes of Crescent City." Betty was also close to nieces Pam Story (Dennis) of Newcastle, Calif., and Penny Bean (Larry) of Auburn, Calif., and their children.

"I married William A. Starnes on Dec. 23, 1958. We were married for 41 years when he passed away on September 11, 2000. I put Bill through Pharmacy School at Oregon State University. I later graduated with a Business Degree from Southern Oregon University in June 1972. Bill and I purchased Harbor Drug in 1975 and later Nadine's Hallmark. I worked side by side with Bill until his death in 2000.

"In 2002 I married Don Major, who survives me, and lived a very happy and loving life until my death. My great love beside my husband Don and the rest of my family and friends was golf. I played as often as I could."

Betty's family joined the great movement West in the late 1930s due to the economic hard times from the Great Depression and the dust bowl of the Midwest. They settled in the Modesto, Calif., area and eventually became successful in the restaurant business in Sacramento, Calif.

Betty missed most of her high school years due to illness and didn't graduate but, as mentioned above, did finish college. Her passion for golf led to being president of the Del Norte Golf Ladies Club and Salmon Run Ladies Club in successive years. Betty and Don did some traveling by motor home and golfed some great courses until Betty's health kept her home. Betty was broken-hearted when she was no longer able to play.

Once we were young. The passing years and poor health can be difficult on a person. Those of us who knew and loved Betty could always see the princess within.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Salmon Run Junior Golf Program, 99040 South Bank Chetco River Road, Brookings, OR 97415.

At her request, no ceremony will be held. Private interment will be at W.J. Ward Memorial Cemetery.

Condolences may be expressed online at

Submitted by Redwood Memorial Chapel.