Airlie Winery founder Larry Preedy and grandson Ben, 1990.##Photo provided

In Memoriam: Larry Preedy

Remembering Airlie’s founder

By OWP Staff

Airlie Winery founder Larry Preedy died from COPD Jan. 19, 2022, at his home in Keizer.

He was born Jan. 11, 1939, in Satanta, Kansas, to Clarence and Ethel Preedy. Raised on a farm near Liberal, Kansas, he graduated from the town’s high school in 1956; four years later, he married Alice Jacobs.

Larry worked as a welder and in the oil fields while farming with his father. He also served in the National Guard. In 1967, he and Alice started their own farm, growing irrigated alfalfa, wheat and milo, and raising cattle. He also owned a trucking business hauling cattle and grain.

In 1977, Larry and Alice decided to move to Oregon, a risky decision as they had no definite plans; within a few months, they purchased an excavation business and settled in Philomath. Farmers at heart, they purchased land near Airlie, planting 20,000 Christmas trees. After the trees were harvested, they established the 40-acre Dunn Forest Vineyard in 1983 and founded Airlie Winery in 1986. He served on the board of the Oregon Winegrowers Association. The winery was sold to Mary Olson in 1997.

Not afraid to take chances, Larry enjoyed challenges and worked hard for his many successes. His family says he would lend a hand without being asked, was honest and upheld a high level of integrity. He could also build, repair, paint, modify and fix just about anything.

Larry enjoyed hunting in Kansas and Eastern Oregon, and target shooting at gun clubs. He also built and raced micro midgets, dune buggies and flew model airplanes.

Truly, a jack of all trades.

He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Alice (Jacobs) Preedy; children Steve (Mimi) Preedy, Kathy (Henry) Gowen and Jennifer (Scott) Henry; seven grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and sister Jan Black. He was preceded in death by his brother, Tim Preedy.

Daughter Jennifer continues his wine legacy as the co-owner of Season Cellars with Scott Henry.

A memorial will be held at Airlie Winery, July 23, 2022.

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