Earl Selby Lackey was born December 3, 1925 in Birds, Illinois to Parker and Susan (Selby) Lackey. The fourth of six children, Earl was the last surviving sibling. His family moved to Colorado when he was 13 and he graduated from Greeley High in 1942. He joined the Navy in 1943 and served in the Pacific theater. He went to college on the GI Bill, where he met Jean Walker at a sock hop social. They were married on September 20, 1946. Earl graduated from Colorado State College of Education with a BA in mathematics and a master's in physical education. Earl taught and coached for 35 years, the last 23 at El Molino High School where he was hired as part of their inaugural staff in 1963. A life-long learner, Earl moved leisurely through obsessions with geology, Spanish, and typing, and was El Molino's first computer teacher. For several years, he helped prisoners at Black Mountain Conservation Camp in Cazadero to obtain their GED's. He was also a lay pastor and served the congregation of Bodega Bay Church for 10 years. He was fond of saying that he taught school to make a living, but being a pastor made life worth living. After retirement in 1986, Jean and Earl moved to Calaveras County where he served as chaplain at Mark Twain Medical Center and they spent many happy days traveling around the US in their fifth wheel trailer. Earl's Parkinson's disease diagnosis forced a return to Sonoma County in 2001. He went home to be with his Lord and Savior on December 28, 2013. In addition to Jean, his wife of 67 years, he is survived by children Brad (Estela and grandchildren Rico, Nestor, Rebecca, and John), Laura Thorson (Erik and grandchildren Karl and Peter), and Daniel (Vonda and grandchildren Steven, Matt, Danielle, and Sarah). We will all miss his humor, his generosity, and his unconditional love. The family would like to thank the staffs at Clare Bridge Memory Care and Summerfield Healthcare and his team of doctors for their help and compassion. Services will be Thursday, January 2, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. at Bodega Bay Church. Inurnment will be private. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a contribution to Redwood Gospel Mission, P.O. Box 493, Santa Rosa, CA 95402.
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Published Online in the Press Democrat from Dec. 31, 2013 to Jan. 3, 2014