HomeNewsLloyd Doss 1920-2011

We were saddened to hear that former Imnaha Store owner/proprieter Lloyd Thomas “Tommy” Doss passed away in Enterprise on October, 25 2011 at the age of 91.

Lloyd became famous playing with some of the best Western music bands of the ’40s and ’50s.

Born in Weiser, Idaho in 1920, his family moved to La Grande, Oregon in 1922.

Lloyd met his wife Naomi Henderson in Hermiston, Oregon where they were married. They moved back to La Grande where in 1939 he formed his first band, Sons of the Grande Ronde. They played the local Elks Club and drove to Baker where they earned $12.50 per week performing on live radio.

In 1948 Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys cane to play in La Grand at Zuber Hall. While there Bob heard Lloyd perform and hired him on the spot. The Dosses left for California the next day, where he played with the Playboys, the Rythm Busters, and Ole Rasmusseen and his Nebraska Cornhuskers until he was recruited by the legendary Sons of the Pioneers to replace Bob Nolan in 1949. When Lloyd joined the Pioneers his stage name became “Tommy Doss’ as there was already a ‘Lloyd’ in the band with Lloyd Perriman.

Lloyd left touring with the Sons of the Pioneers in 1963 and he, Naomi and their youngest son moved to Imnaha and became owner/operators of  the Imnaha Store and Tavern. Naomi served as the Imnaha postmaster  until they sold the store in 1977.

Lloyd was inducted into the Western Music Association Hall of Fame November 21, 2008.

Lloyd and Naomi were members of the Enterprise Christian Church.

He was preceded in death by his parents and nine siblings.

He is survived by his wife Naomi of Wallowa; two sons and their wives, Dennis and Karolyne Doss of Wallowa and Tim and Carol Doss of Enterprise; four grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

Services were held at the Enterprise Christian Church Oct. 29, 2011.



Lloyd Doss 1920-2011 — 3 Comments

  1. I was born in LaGrande and my folks knew “Tommy” Doss…went to school with him. My dad talked about him often and was proud to know somebody from the Sons of the Pioneers. This is a great story about the man and his music, his place in Wallowa County. My late husband, Chuck Ackley, and I spent several years in and out of the County with various activities. It’s a place dear to my heart. Thanks for writing it.

  2. In 1975 Lloyd came into the Radio Shack store in Enterprise which was owned by my dad, Tom Smith. Lloyd was looking to have his Sons of the Pioneers reel-to-reel tapes transfered onto cassette so he could play them in his truck. My dad gladly did the recording under one condition. That he would make two copies and keep one for himself. Lloyd agreed and, as far as I know, my dad still has that cassette. There were songs that I’d never heard before on that recording.

  3. Lloyd was a great person had a lot of fun visiting with him and Naomi when I was young and lived on the creek. Sad to here of his passing.

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