John “Richie” Richard Maklary passed away at his home on Friday morning, June 17 at age 73 with his dog Sully by his side, just the way he wanted.
He was best friends with his wife of 45 years, Toni Maklary. Their 48th anniversary as partners is July 3. Richie was the middle child of 3, father of 6, and grandfather of 10 with one more expected in January. He was incredibly adored by family, friends, and even acquaintances.
Richie participated in philanthropic work during his lifetime. As an avid cyclist, he, his brother Willie, and his son Matt raised money for MS Tour for Cure for years, cycling 150 miles in two days. His hobbies and passions included riding horses, cycling, nascar and drag racing, carpentry, playing pool, tennis, chess, backgammon, and restoring classic cars.
He was proud of his many gold and silver Senior Citizen Olympic medals for tennis, horse shoes, bowling, and cycling. I must specify the tennis and cycling were gold. He shared his many skills and interests with his kids and grandkids. He was playing tennis with his grandson Gabriel every week this summer and taught Gabriel and Karlie to drive a riding lawn mower. His grandson Miles said he really liked when his “Que Paw” would show him his vintage car collectibles. Margot and Eloise will miss his silly stories he’d make up for them. Olivia, the eldest grandchild visited Que Paw in March and is grateful to have seen him so recently. Bradley, Claude, and Bodevan along with future grandchildren will be told so many wonderful stories of their Que Paw.
Richie was a PFC paratrooper in the Army, a title he was proud of since his dad was an 81st airborne E Company paratrooper. While in the Army, Richie traveled to several countries in Europe and Asia. As a father, he visited Nicaragua with his daughter Hay-Lee on an animal rescue mission. He frequented Canada to visit his youngest daughter Sophie. Kellie, Kayla, and Matt live in Louisiana and cherish the little moments spending afternoons laughing with him. Keith, the eldest son looks like a younger version of Richie so their visits in South Carolina and Louisiana were always fascinating to witness.
Richie was always telling funny stories and making people laugh with his animation and pure joy. The world would melt away if you were lucky enough to be his audience.
Richie and his wife Toni have enjoyed a peaceful life in Folsom, Louisiana. He’d fix coffee for himself and tea for Toni each morning and sit on the porch to admire the gardens, birds, and perfectly kept lawn. Each evening they’d put on music and dance before going to bed.
The night before Richie passed, as he was dancing in the living room with the love of his life Toni and the dogs, he said “If I die tonight, I’d die the happiest man on earth. I’m going to wake up with a smile on my face.”. Not a bad last memory.
My dad was one of a kind and is missed more than words could ever express.
He has joined his parents William “Bill” Maklary and Norma Barker Maklary along with his grandson Kaladin Oak Macdonald.
He will be in the hearts of his wife Toni, his siblings Willie Maklary(Darlene) and Hazel Buchta(Ron) (who will miss her older brother’s silly voicemails), his children Keith Maklary(Heidi), Matt Maklary, Kellie Taylor(Jeremy), Hay-Lee Usher(Dominic), Kayla Dendinger(Alex) and Sophie Macdonald(Graeme), grandchildren Olivia Maklary, Gabriel Taylor, Karlie Taylor, Margot Dendinger, Miles Dendinger, Eloise Dendinger, Claude Dendinger, Bradley Usher, and Bodevan Macdonald.
Family and Friends are invited to attend a Memorial Service in the chapel of Bagnell & Son Funeral Home 75212 Lee Road (HWY 437) Covington, Louisiana, Saturday, July 16. Visitation 10am with Service at 12pm.
In lieu of flowers, please gift Toni with a card with a fond memory of Richie in it.