Darrell Richard Hansen passed away at home, on January 20th, 2024. He was born on March 10, 1957, in Dorset, Ohio, where he spent most of his adolescent years. He loved to talk about his experiences as a boy, in the woods of Ohio. He loved to recall times of hunting raccoons with his coon dog and checking his traps in the Ohio winters, and floating Mill Creek with his friend Dan Agardi. As the son of a fisherman, he also had a love for fishing. He spent a lot of time fishing on Lake Erie. He had a very good work ethic as well. He held several jobs as a youth, such as trapping muskrats and pitching hay. He also worked at a lumbermill, and as a farmhand on a pig farm, that is just to name a few.
In 1975 he graduated from Ashtabula County Joint Vocational School where he studied Agriculture. His love for plants and gardening carried on throughout the rest of his life. Shortly after graduation, he was hired at a Smith and Wesson ammunition plant in Rock Creek, Ohio, where he worked as a hopper filler. It was there he met Jeannette Michalske, whom he married in 1977.
It was two weeks after their first child was born, that he accepted Christ as his Lord, and Saviour in October 1979. He always said that is when his life began. He studied the Bible under Pastor Fred Fowler and eventually took over the pulpit at Fundamental Baptist Church in Dorset, Ohio. In 1986, after the birth of their 5th child, the family moved to Chesapeake, VA, where he attended and graduated from King James Bible Institute. Not long after, he took his family, and headed out west, to share the best news he had ever heard- the gospel.
In 1990 after the birth of their 7th child, the Lord called him to start a church in Oregon. He packed up the family and pet Chow Chow and headed for Astoria, Oregon, where he had lived briefly as an adolescent. But, the Lord had other plans. The family of nine packed up and then moved across the state to Eastern Oregon and settled in Vale as the Lord led. There he bought the empty Bully Creek Market and started the Bully Creek Baptist Church. He had served faithfully in the Vale area for twenty years when in 2011, the Episcopal Diocese donated their empty church building in Vale, to the congregation of Bully Creek Baptist Church. It became the Oregon Trail Baptist Church and the congregation made great use of it for the next 11 years. Then in 2022 Pastor Hansen and his flock were led to move to a larger building. This resulted in them renting, and eventually trying to purchase, the empty Nazarene building in Vale, where the congregation currently meets.
As a young boy, Darrell taught himself to play the guitar. He progressively became an accomplished musician, and songwriter, and could play just about any instrument. He put together 3 CDs of his original music, which included a song dedicated to his wife called, Jeannette’s Song. He was dedicated to using his gift for music to honor and worship the Lord and spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
He was preceded in death by his father Donald Hansen and his mother Virgina Hansen, his grandparents, and several aunts. He is survived by his wife of 46 years, Jeannette, as well as his 5 sons, Timothy of John Day, OR: Stephen of Prineville, OR, and Philip of Vale, OR. : Peter of Ontario, OR. : and Paul of Vale, OR, and his 3 daughters Apryl Lammers of Parma, ID.: Autumn Tran of Vale, OR: and Amber Eicher of Parma, ID. He was also blessed with 28 grandchildren and 1 soon-to-arrive great-grandchild. Darrell is also survived by his brother David of Warsaw, Indiana, and sister Joyce Cornell of Dorset, Ohio.
Darrell was a real dreamer and a go-getter. He will be remembered for his passion for life, his wife, his family, and his music, but most of all, his love for God, the King James Bible, and seeing souls saved.
He often said, “When I die, just throw me in the burn barrel”. We did not. He has graduated to his mansion in glory and is walking the streets of gold. He has finished his course, and he kept the faith, but he is greatly missed by his family and those who loved him.
A memorial service is scheduled for February 16th, at 11 am, followed by a potluck. The service will be held at Oregon Trail Baptist Church at 191 Holland St. South in Vale, Oregon.
Instead of flowers, the family asks those who wish to donate to please donate in Darrell’s honor to the church building fund that he had started before he passed. Donations can be made in person at the church, or online at https://t.ly/darrell , by registering as a guest and selecting Darrell Hansen-OTBC Building Fund in the drop-down menu.