Eric Sinclair, 34, of Enterprise was born in Elmira, Ore., to a professor dad and a teacher mother. He graduated from Willamette High School in Eugene in 2001.
He went on to Central Oregon Community College in Bend where he met his future wife, Mary Masters, studied forestry, and worked part-time falling trees for the U.S. Forest Service.
He and Mary married in 2003 and the couple moved to Corvallis so Eric could finish his bachelor’s degree in Natural Resources. Their first son, Stratton, came along in 2004.
Corvallis was also where Eric began working as an arborist, a job he stayed with through graduation from OSU in 2006, leaving in 2008 when he and his brothers traveled to Blachly, Oregon, in rural Lane County to help their dad set up his retirement hobby farm.
By then the couple had another son, Gunnar, and decided it was time to find “the place where we raise our children.”
They took a two month trip, mostly through Eastern Oregon, trying to find a place to call home. That’s when they discovered Wallowa County.
It rained pretty much the whole two weeks they were tent camping in the area, so it was the pace and the people that impressed them most.
“The people were the good kind,” Eric said. “Hard working, friendly and community oriented.”
They immediately took the plunge, rented a house and moved without jobs.
Eric remedied the work situation immediately, beginning in construction with Ray and Dan DeLury, Eric Olson and Dave Hagen. He also worked for the Forest Service as a timber cruiser and timber marker for three years.
In 2010, he and his brother, Benjamin, began Sinclair Brothers Tree Service as a side job.
That side job grew, as did Eric and Mary’s family. They now have four children — adding Margaret, 7, and Barclay, 8 weeks.
Sinclair Brothers Tree Service now employs six and the “brother” partner is another brother, Andrew.
The family enjoys supporting their church, the ice rink, T-ball and many other sport groups and helping set up the logging competitions for the Maxville Heritage Celebration.
Why settle in Wallowa County?
It was like the Oregon we knew growing up. It felt like it would be a safe place for the kiddos with good people all over.
What has Wallowa County taught you?
It’s taught me that there are still places where hard work, perseverance, trying to do a good job, and being a good member of the community are valued.
Can you recall the first book you checked out for yourself from the library, and can you recommend a book you are reading now?
I’ll bet it would have been The Boxcar Children or a Hardy Boys mystery. A book, or books, I am reading now that I can recommend are the Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant and General Sherman, published by the Library of America. I like that kind of thing.