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C. Richard Dick Neely

February 28, 1927 to April 16, 2014 -


C. Richard “Dick” Neely, former Assistant Regional Solicitor for the National Parks Service, died in Clackamas, Oregon on Wednesday, April 16, after a short illness.

Dick was born February 28, 1927 to Charles and Marjorie Neely, in Moscow, Idaho. He grew up near the family farm homestead in Nezperce, Idaho, graduating from Clarkston (Washington) High School.

Dick was an Eagle Scout, who joined the U.S. Navy upon high school graduation in 1945. Dick was honorably discharged a year later and entered the University of Oregon in 1946. He met his future wife, Mary Hall, in French class at the U of O and with her help made it through the language requirement and graduated in 1950. Dick and Mary were married in 1951, when Dick went on to law school at the University of Michigan, receiving his J.D. in 1953.

After working in private practice in LaGrande, Oregon from 1954 to 1964, Dick joined the Regional Solicitors Office in Portland, making his new home in Lake Oswego. Dick supported several different departments, but most enjoyed his work with the National Park Service. His favorite park to visit as part of his job was Mount Rainier National Park in Washington.

Dick retired from the government in 1991, and immediately started “full time” on his abiding interest in his rose garden and the burgeoning wine scene in Oregon. Dick worked as a volunteer at Ponzi Vineyards for many years; manning the tasting rooms and helping Dick Ponzi explain his winemaking philosophy to visitors.

Dick is survived by his wife, Mary, daughter Katy, sons Rick and Steve, and four grandchildren; Mike, Jenni, Jessica and Lauren.

A celebration of Dick’s life will be held at Miramont Pointe, 11520 S.E. Sunnyside Rd., Clackamas, at 10:30 am on Saturday, April 26, with internment to follow in Nezperce.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers, gifts may be sent to the American Cancer Society.