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'We loved her very much': Riddle remembers dedicated volunteer who died stranded in woods

Photos of Melvin and Alice Hawkins and Sharon Buchanan from the Douglas County Sheriff's Office.

RIDDLE, Ore. - People at the South Douglas Food Bank knew Sharon Buchanan well.

"She does a lot stuff in the community - she did a lot of stuff," Linda Jennings said. "Everybody knows her - everybody knows them all."

Buchanan and two friends were reported missing September 3, two days after they went for a drive.

An elk hunter found them stranded September 9 on a remote forest road outside Azalea, Ore.

Melvin and Alice Hawkins, a Riddle couple in their 80s, survived.

Buchanan died just hours prior to her rescue.

The medical examiner is working to determine her cause of death, but deputies said it appears to be natural causes.

Food pantry manager Lori Lonergan knew Buchanan for almost a decade.

"She was a very good volunteer," she said, "and we loved her very much."

Buchanan volunteered daily to give out food to people in the community. Her house was a short walk away, across the street.

"She was known as the orange lady," Longergan said. "Anybody that could see her coming down the street knew. And if she wasn't in orange, that was the first question: 'Why aren't you not wearing orange today, Sherry?'"

"She'll be really missed by everybody," Jennings said.

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