Cover photo for Russell Dekay's Obituary
Russell Dekay Profile Photo
1926 Russell 2015

Russell Dekay

September 15, 1926 — January 25, 2015

Memorial Services are scheduled for 1:00pm, Thursday, January 29th, 2015 at Lagrone Funeral Chapel for Russell DeKay, 88, of Roswell, who passed away, Sunday, January 25th. Pastor Randy Nolan will officiate. Russell was a member of Westminster Presbyterian Church.

Russell DeKay was born in Hancock, New York, on September 15th, 1926, to Carl and Bertha DeKay, who preceded him in death. A brother, Bernard DeKay, one brother-in-law and three sisters-in-law also preceded him. He is survived by wife, Loris DeKay, two sons, Todd and Kurt DeKay, daughter-in-law Lori DeKay, grandchildren Kyle DeKay, Zachary DeKay, and Ashley Kern, brother-in-law & sister-in-law Lawrence and Janis Serfis, brother-in-law Ross McCullough, sister-in-law Marian DeKay, and several nephews.

Russell married Loris McCullough in Northville, New York, on July 29th, 1961. He was a Navy veteran of the Pacific Theater in WWII and was a radar man aboard the USS Amsterdam, one of the first warships to enter Tokyo Bay. He later attended UNM in Albuquerque, then returned to NY in 1951 to begin a 27 year civilian career, retiring in 1978 from Hq. of Air Force Communication Service and receiving the 2nd highest civilian award by General Sadler for his service.

A second career in volunteering began almost immediately after moving to Roswell when Russell became involved in youth, senior, and civic activities, as well as craft projects to benefit the community. In 1980 he was one of five Foundation members of the Roswell Youth Soccer Association, and the DeKay Soccer Complex was named in his honor in 1983.

As a member of NARFE (National Active and Retired Federal Employees), Russell was State President for 2 years and was largely instrumental in getting Alzheimer's adopted as NARFE's National supporting cause, which has since raised over ten million dollars. He was chosen as Volunteer of the year for the entire state and received the Circle of Excellence Award the first time it was presented at the Prime Time Expo in Albuquerque. In 1996 he was inducted into the Northville, New York High School Hall of Fame for his lifetime achievements and was chosen Roswell Citizen of the Year in 1997.

Russell co-chaired the 1st Roswell Red Ribbon Campaign against Drugs, was past Chairman of the Executive Board of RSVP, received the Service of Mankind Award from 2 Sertoma Clubs, as well as the District Award, was the Roswell Mid-Day Lion of the Year twice, past Chairman of Parks & Recreation Commission, a member of the Veterans Parade Committee, and a life member of the Elks and VFW.

As a woodworking hobby, Russell made dozens of trophies and signs for various groups, including a large hobby horse, which was auctioned off by RSVP at one of their fundraising events. He was also an avid hunter and fisherman, killing a bear in 2010, his last year of hunting.

Russell DeKay will be deeply missed by all his friends and family, not only for his administrative and creative abilities, but also for his kindness, compassion, and ability to relate to all age groups. Friends may pay respects on line at lagronefuneralchapels.com.

Arrangements are under the care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel.

Service


Memorial

LaGrone Funeral Chapel
900 S. Main
Roswell, NM  88203
Thursday, January 29, 2015
1:00 p.m.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Russell Dekay, please visit our flower store.

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