PENINSULA - Loren Corder, philanthropist and former Peninsula resident, died in 1988 but his legacy lives on in the Corder Trust, administered locally and benefiting the seniors of the Peninsula.
The 22 acres of land located across Pacific Hwy. from 213th in Ocean Park was left in a trust. It was his belief, according to 95-year-old Marjorie House, his companion for 25 years, that seniors needed a place to go and visit with their neighbors, play a hand of cards or just to sit and be with other seniors.
Part of this land was purchased to build the Golden Sands Retirement home and by Dr. Meno who built the North Beach Clinic for over $1 million. More of the land was sold to build the Peninsula Senior Activity Center.
An old 40-foot wide airport hanger sits on the remaining parcel, and it is used for storage. The remaining land is not for sale, and any interested party must have a project in mind that benefits seniors in the community, as it is being held for that purpose. Monies from the estate are donated to organizations like PACE that deal with senior citizen interests. Many had hopes that PACE would move to this land, but instead they stayed in Ilwaco. House said she would still like to see them build a building on some of the remaining land so that PACE could have a building to themselves that would meet all their needs in caregiving, meal serving and home delivery.
At one time, all the land from 220th to 227th was an airport. Corder kept it open because he had a plane and he would allow anyone to land there. People would often fly in from Vancouver, Portland or Seattle on a Sunday, walk to the beach, have a picnic and then fly back home.
House remembers her maroon home that now sits on the highway as abutting the ocean in those days. The land has accreted so much now that there are six more homes on 213th and two more to be built.
The Corder Trust Estate is managed by a trustee and can be contacted locally at a P.O. Box in Long Beach, Washington.
As land availability begins to shrink with Pacific Highway access, more projects are needed to benefit the seniors who comprise 30 percent of our population according to 2000 census figures in order to abide by the intent of this trust and the legacy of Loren Corder.