Richard Tolley

1948 - 2013


Richard P. “Rick” Tolley Sr., 65, of Milton-Freewater died at his home on March 7, 2013, after a lengthy battle with cancer.

Rick was born Feb. 10, 1948, in Erwin, Tenn., to Bill and Wilma Tolley. He married Anne Redunski and they later divorced. He served in the United States Navy from 1968 to 1972 in active duty, then until 1991 in the Naval Reserve. After his discharge from the Navy in 1972, he worked for the United States Postal Service as a mail carrier, then at the Washington State Penitentiary as a cook. He owned Ricks Americana Café, in Milton-Freewater from 1991 to 1993, at which time he left to work for Bell Telecommunications from 1993 to 1999. He ended his long career of cooking at Kelly’s Restaurant in Milton-Freewater, where he worked from 1999-2012. He was a longtime member of the Elks Lodge of Milton-Freewater. He took great pleasure in cooking, especially for groups of people, was an avid hunter, fisherman and generally enjoyed the outdoors and his daily crossword puzzles. He is most known for watching baseball and was a longtime fan of the N.Y. Yankees.

He is survived by his partner, Diana Lafferty of Milton-Freewater; daughters, Jennifer Vaughn (Thomas Steggell) of Rockaway Beach, Ore.; and Cathy (Jeff) Hunter of Pocatello, Idaho; grandchildren, Jeffrey Vaughn of Tillamook, Ore., Tyler Vaughn of Milton-Freewater, Cole Rand of Walla Walla, Miranda Tolley of El Paso, Texas, and Hailey L’Heureux-Tolley of Seattle; his siblings, Joe (Debbie) Tolley of Dixie, Nancy (Jim) Borgers of Walla Walla, Linda (Donald) Roberts of Kennewick, Sharon (Doug) Brooks of Idaho Falls, Idaho, and Pam (Stanley) Mace of Walla Walla; he is also survived by numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He was preceded in death by his sons, Richard P. Tolley, Jr. and Christopher Tolley; his brother, Michael Tolley; and his parents, Bill and Wilma Tolley.

Rick requested his remains be committed to the sea. A celebration of life potluck luncheon will be held at the Walla Walla Senior Center (Center at the Park), 720 Sprague St., Walla Walla, on Saturday, March 23, 2013, from noon to 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Walla Walla Hospice or Providence St. Mary Medical Center Cancer Unit through Munsell-Rhondes Funeral Home, 902 S. Main St., Milton-Freewater, OR 97862.

They that go down to the sea in ships that do business in great waters; these see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep.


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