Leroy Jesse Maloy of Woodlake died Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, at Kaweah Delta Transitional Care in Visalia. He was 83.
A celebration of Leroy’s life will be held Saturday, June 2, at Foothill Bible Church, 37721 Road 200, Elderwood.
Leroy was born May 14, 1934, to Lee Maloy and Blanche McKee Maloy of Three Rivers and raised on the family ranch. He was the eldest of three children.
Leroy graduated from Three Rivers School in 1948 and Woodlake High School in 1952. He attended College of the Sequoias in Visalia.
During his school years, Leroy spent every summer at his family’s commercial pack station and riding stable in the Giant Forest area of Sequoia National Park that was started by his grandfather, Earl McKee Sr. As he matured, he became a backcountry packer, skilled with a string of pack mules, who would travel to remote locales throughout the Sierra to set up camp prior to the dudes’ (some who were quite prominent) arrival.
A McKee outfit consists of an experienced guide, packers, an expert cook, mountain-trained saddle horses and sturdy pack mules. Delicious meals are served on folding tables. Comfortable canvas chairs are provided for each member of the party… (Echoes of Three Rivers: Landmarks and Lore, by Earl McKee Jr. and Gaynor McKee)
It was during these trips, while gathered around the campfire, that Leroy accumulated the many stories and songs that are now cherished family memories.
Leroy worked at Sequoia National Park for 29 years until his retirement in June 1997. His life had come full circle as he was able to return to his beloved backcountry as a packer before moving up the ladder to retire as roads and trails foreman.
For many years, Leroy resided in Three Rivers, where he raised his family, before relocating to Woodlake. He cherished the lasting friendships he made with his SNP crew members over the years and was a loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, and friend.
Leroy played football at Woodlake High School and remained a loyal WHS booster the rest of his life. He was a charter member of the Poison Oak Men’s Summer Softball League in Three Rivers.
Leroy was a dedicated member of Foothill Bible Church in Elderwood, where he devoted many hours to grounds maintenance and general upkeep while also providing set-up for the church services. He loved his fellow parishioners whom he considered his second family.
Leroy was preceded in death by his father, Lee Maloy, in December 1990; mother Blanche Maloy (1916-2004); and his brother, Bill (1936-2011).
He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Sandy; his children, Terri Vann and husband Frank of Virginia City, Nev., Kellie Shear and husband Scott of Joseph, Ore., Tate Maloy of Los Angeles, Wendy McKellar and husband Eric of Three Rivers, and Karl Wallace and wife Evelyn of San Jose;
eight grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; stepchildren Leslie Powell and husband Mike of Exeter; Gary Davis and wife Becky of Elderwood; five step-grandchildren; four step-great-grandchildren; his sister, Virginia Newberry and husband Ed of San Marcos, Calif.; sister-in-law Mary Maloy of Washoe Valley, Nev.; his uncle, Earl McKee and wife Gaynor of Three Rivers; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.