[Update April 2017: the home has been demolished to make way for a new set of homes.]
This history was written by Louise Jones, based on phone conversations with Diann (Dede) Lynn Partlow Porcelli, in response to queries regarding the large Colonial house with white pillars that face south and is situated between 77th and 78th Avenue (7440 SW 78th). Opal Kickbusch, the most recent owner, died in February of 2015. See also: Gabriel, Olive Stott.
History of family home on 77th-78th Avenues:
The house was owned by Dede’s great aunt Olive Stott Gabriel, who lived there in the 1930’s. For a time it was occupied by renters, who became squatters, who had to be removed. At her death, the house was willed to Dede’s father Jim Partlow, whose family moved in around 1945 and lived there until they moved to Klamath Falls in 1961. Jim was a coach at Lincoln High School and Athletic Director of Oregon Institute of Technology. The family consisted of Jim, Dede’s mom Yvonne, Dede, and her younger brother Jim. The parents Jim and Yvonne have died. Dede lives in Newberg and her brother Jim lives in Forest Grove.
The property was large, with the house, a freestanding garage, a caretaker’s cottage (known as the nuthouse – a playhouse for the kids and their friends), a barn, and large parcels of land, both north and south of the house, several blocks long along 77th and 78th. The grounds had a circle on the 77th side, park-like, with a circular drive. There were gardens with fruits, vegetables, and flowers, a filbert orchard, and a large picnic area on the 78th side, with evergreen trees.
Aunt Olive willed some of the land to Jim’s brother Bill Partlow. His family – wife Fama, children Linda, Susan, Chuck, and Laura – lived for a time in a small house across from the Poutala house, on Partlow land. Their new house was built on the corner of 78th and Garden Home Road, completed in the 50’s. Currently, Fama and Laura live in Newberg, Linda in Boring, Susan in Hawaii, and Chuck in Goldendale. Bill has died.
Jim and Yvonne had the big house remodeled soon after moving in. Center steps and porch were removed and a large porch was constructed across the entire front side, with side steps on each end. The sliding wooden doors between the parlor and the front room were also removed. Fritz Reinhardt was the contractor for the remodel.
The house itself is large and wonderful. There is a large entry hall, with stairs off to the left going to the second story. Another set of steps are accessed through a door in the hall, also reached through a door in the dining room – a sort of hidden staircase, up to the second floor and also to the basement.
The living room is large, a combination of the former parlor and living room, with fireplace and lovely windows. The dining room is next and then the kitchen – Dede says not the best room in the house, rather small. A door off the kitchen leads to steps down to the yard. The upstairs has a large semi-circular hall, with doors leading to a den, three bedrooms, and a bath. There is another bath in the large basement.
The house was purchased by John and Opal Kickbusch. John was a motorcycle officer with the Portland Police. (I remember seeing him several times in Rose Festival parades.) They had three children, William, Diane, and Carla; Carla was still at home when John and Opal lived in Garden Home. John died on March 24, 2004, Opal recently.
From phone conversations with Dede: Diann (Dede) Lynn Partlow Porcelli