Kasilof resident Richard "Dick" H. Blakeslee Sr. died Sunday, June 20, 2004, in a boating accident while fishing on the Kenai River. He was 64.
A celebration of life will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Thursday, June 24, at Peninsula Memorial Chapel, 5839 Kenai Spur Highway in Kenai. VFW Post No. 10046 will perform military honors at 4:30 p.m. Mr. Blakeslee's ashes will be scattered on the Fuller Lakes Trail in Cooper Landing at a later date.
Mr. Blakeslee was born Feb. 22, 1940, in Los Angeles. He was raised in Oroville, Calif., and graduated from Oroville High School in 1957. He entered the U.S. Navy and served 24 years until he retired in 1982. During the last 15 of his 24 years that he served, he was a U.S. Navy recruiter. After retiring from the Navy, he worked for the U.S. Post Office in Eugene, Ore., and Springfield, Ore., for 10 years until he retired in February 1995.
Mr. Blakeslee first came to Alaska on June 27, 1995. He and his wife made Kasilof their home for the past nine years. Mr. Blakeslee loved hunting deer, elk, caribou, black bear and wild fowl, fishing, woodworking and building Chuck Raymond sleds in the traditional Iditarod manner. He was a member of Kasilof Community Church.
"My husband Dick Blakeslee, who I called 'Tadee,' was a man's man who had a very tender and loving heart. He also was a man who loved God. He was his happiest when the both of us went hunting and fishing together. He would tell me that when I hunted black bear with him he saw more bear, usually browns, than when he hunted with other people," his wife said.
"Besides his love for hunting and fishing, he had a wonderful voice, which he used to sing. Every time he sang, it was because the Lord had told him in his heart to sing that song in church. He loved his 24-year Naval career, which he talked about often."
Mr. Blakeslee was preceded in death by his father, Charles Stewart Blakeslee; and mother, Ruth Linnea Blakeslee.
He is survived by his wife of 22 years, Jane Blakeslee of Kasilof; sons, Stewart Lee Blakeslee of Everett, Wash., and Richard Harold Blakeslee Jr. of Walterville, Ore.; daughters, Cheryl L. Root of Sutherland, Ore., and Diana A. Thatcher of Pendleton, Ore.; brother, Pete Blakeslee of Nome; four granddaughters; three grandsons; two nieces; and two great-nephews.
Arrangements were made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel.
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