Richard Dudley (Dick) Sawyer passed away peacefully on March 18, 2017 due to complications from a stroke. The only child of Ralph M. (Tom) and Nora J. Sawyer, Dick was born in Fresno, California in 1931. He grew up in Merced Falls until the age of 13 when the family moved to Turlock. He attended Turlock High School (graduated in 1949) where he excelled in five sports and was honored to be named into the Turlock High School Sports Hall of Fame. Dick attended Stanford University on a sports scholarship and also Modesto Junior College for a time before moving to Hilmar, California in the mid 1950’s to raise his young family. Shortly thereafter, he relocated back to Turlock and for many years was the owner of R.D. Sawyer Construction, building homes in the Central Valley and Sierra foothills. In 1962, Dick married Elsie L. Stinson (who after 44 years of marriage, preceded him in death in 2006). In retirement, he pursued a passion for ranching and the cattle business. He enjoyed driving out to his ranch in western Stanislaus County daily to feed and manage his herd. His ranching days were a special part of his life!
Dick was blessed with four children: Rick Sawyer, Mike Sawyer (Pam), Susan Sawyer Anderson (Glenn) and Beth Sawyer Reich. He had two step-sons: Kelly Stinson (who proceeded him in death in 1985) and Perry Stinson (Joanne). Between Dick and Elsie, they enjoyed and dearly loved eleven grandchildren: Zachary, Lindsay, Levi, Marissa, Spencer, Amos, Sam, Lydia, and Nicole, Kristina, and Amber. Dick also had seven great grandchildren who he delighted in buying tootsie rolls for every chance he got!
Besides his family, Dick’s two greatest loves were the S.F. Giants and old western movies. He also greatly enjoyed many close friendships through the years. He had a special knack for making people laugh with his witty sense of humor. He will be forever missed and cherished by his family and all who knew and loved him!
There will be a celebration of life service for Dick on Friday March 31 at 1:00 at Allen’s Mortuary located at 247 N. Broadway in Turlock. Immediately following will be a reception across the street at the Carnegie Arts Center, 250 N. Broadway, where we invite family and friends to share stories and memories of Dick. In addition, there will be visitation available at Allen’s on Thursday March 30 from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM.