Homeless man’s life honored in ceremony

Ron Smith, who befriended Sunny last Easter, performed two songs for guests at the celebration of life ceremony.

More than 20 people attended Sunny’s celebration of life ceremony held last Saturday, April 30, at the Eagles Club in Keizer.

According to his brother Gary Chorre, who attended the ceremony, Sunny’s name was Ronald James Chorre. Even that information was hard to come by since his death, and little else is currently known about his life before he came to Keizer more than a decade ago, but he left an indelible impression on many Keizer residents with his willingness to help others and his cheerful spirit.  

Sunny was close to being housed prior to his death – plans were underway to find him a permanent home before he passed, according to Beth Grifford who emceed the ceremony. 

Music was provided by Ron Smith, who played Sunny’s favorite songs: Hey, Tomorrow by Jim Croce and You’ve Got a Friend, by Carole King.

Sunny’s brother provided a eulogy to Keizertimes.

“Early on it rained on Sunny’s parade. He stumbled and slipped on life’s muddied path. And yet, through the gloom of a life of constant suffering and pain, he took it to heart and turned the tables on fate.  

“After every stormy encounter with bad luck, the clouds parted and Sunny’s light was shining bright. Sunny was a needy soul who spent a hard life giving his all, and in so doing earned a place in a community of mutual love.  

“It’s no wonder he became Keizer’s very own Santa Claus. We will miss you Sunny.”