Margaret Edna "Rickie"
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1927 - 2013
Rickie Neely passed away peacefully at her home on September 27, 2013 at the age of 86. She was born in Miami, Arizona on June 30, 1927, the youngest of two children of Arthur and Edna Welch. She graduated from Miami High School (Class of '45, varsity drum majorette) and attended Arizona State College (now ASU) where she met Joe Bob Neely, her husband of 66 years. Joe Bob passed away earlier this year. Rickie is survived by her son Robert, married to Sally Neely; son Gary; and daughter Charlotte, married to David Cummings. She is also survived by 5 grandchildren: Stephanie, married to Max Gladstone, Robin, Kenneth, Jared and Christopher.
Rickie and Joe Bob lived briefly in Florence before moving to Tempe where they lived the rest of their lives, building a successful farming business, growing cotton, alfalfa, silage corn and other crops. They enjoyed their second home in Pinetop at White Mountain Country Club, where they spent over 50 wonderful summers, building lifelong friendships. In her long, full life, she was a musician, singer, artist, golfer, bridge player, homemaker and a devoted, loving wife, mother and friend.
Rickie was a gifted artist, turning an early aptitude for drawing into a lifelong passion. Her oils, pastels and water colors adorn the walls of her home, the homes of family, friends, appreciative fans and White Mountain Country Club. She embraced golf as an adult, and carried a low-teens handicap for many years. She was an outdoors woman, enjoying fishing, berry-picking and exploring the mountains with family and friends into her late 70s.
She lived her life with humor and kindness, and left with no regrets. She will be missed by her family and many, many friends. Services will be private, for Rickie's immediate family. Donations in Rickie's memory may be made to:
Fund Development, 1510 E. Flower St., Phoenix, AZ 85014 http://www.hov.org/
Click here to view the notice as it appeared in print.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Oct. 2, 2013