OBITUARY: Richard B. Downer

Oct. 4, 1932 – May 21, 2024

Richard Downer

As those of us who are lucky enough to have known him there is no more generous a spirit than the one who inhabited our beloved Richard B. Downer.

With heavy hearts we say Rich’s physical form was taken from us on May 21, 2024. Despite this sad loss, his joy and energy and enthusiasm will always fill our hearts.

Rich was born on October 4, 1932, in Prescott, Ariz. Adventure quickly followed as the mere five- year-old was lovingly adopted by a family in El Monte, Cali. Following an idyllic childhood, and graduation from El Monte High School in 1952, Rich accepted an invitation to go for a ride with his friend Dale. That ride took him from Southern California to the Willamette Valley.

Rich settled in Molalla, Ore. and, by 1960, was gainfully employed as a farm hand when he heard of an opportunity in the burgeoning local construction business. This resulted in a professional association with Gelco Construction which lasted for nearly 22 years. Rich worked as a concrete finisher and retired in May 1997.

Richard met the love of his life, Jackie, and they have been inseparable since their wedding day, July 17, 1993. Together, Rich and Jackie created an enjoyable life among the irises in Keizer. Rich was in his element working with his flowers, mowing the lawn and creating a beautiful garden sanctuary that surrounds their home to this day.

Travel was also a passion for the couple. They have enjoyed many corners of the United States – Washington, DC, Minnesota, San Francisco, and both Disneyland and Disney World. Rich and Jackie never missed an opportunity to sail the high seas with many adventures aboard various cruise ships.

A dancer of some renown since high school, Rich was a member of the Keizer Elks and recently received his certification of 60 years of membership. Rich and Jackie enjoyed a regular date dancing most Saturday nights. Rich was especially proud of his continuing association with Alcohol Anonymous, recently celebrating 32 years of sobriety.

Other passions included the Los Angeles Rams, the University of Oregon Ducks, and John Wayne.

Rich leaves his loving wife Jackie, a grandson and granddaughter Dean and Teresa and their children, David and Lawson. A private internment is planned. A celebration of life will be held from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on July 28, at the Keizer Elks Lodge.

Contact Keizertimes Staff:
[email protected] or 503-390-1051

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