Gordy passed away June 26th after a brief but courageous battle with cancer. He was born in French Camp and was a lifelong Lodi area resident. He was a beloved husband, father and "opa."
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He married the love of his life Ellie in 1967 in Reno, NV. He was blessed to have a daughter Shandra, who adored him and was the apple of his eye. He took tremendous pride in his two grandchildren Nicholas and Ashley of Idaho. He loved to hear of their many life experiences and athletic accomplishments.
Gordy was an outstanding athlete and excelled in baseball, basketball and men's fast-pitch softball. He was a member of the 1956-57 Lodi High Basketball team which was undefeated and inducted into the Lodi Sports Hall of Fame in 2002. He is credited with making the winning shot during the championship game of the season.
Gordy's love of sports carried on as he became a loved and highly respected coach of both girls basketball and girls fast-pitch softball. Many of his "students" kept in contact with him through the years, even up to his passing. He instilled the love and respect of the sport in each of them and passed on to them a "never give up" attitude. He was the founder of the Lodi (now California) Grapettes competitive softball organization in 1987. The inaugural team, a girls 18U played in the National Championship Tournament that year and placed 7th. A very respectable accomplishment. The team has since expanded and is going strong to this day. Many who knew Gordy described him as a big "teddy bear." The way he instructed and interacted with the girls he worked with was passionate and unmatched and he was greatly respected by the athletic community.
Gordy graduated from Lodi High School and went on to receive an AA in Accounting at Delta College. He worked for 37 years as a valued employee and supervisor for Pacific Coast Producers in Lodi. He also opened up Gordy's Bait and Tackle Shop which was a great source of pride and passion for his love of fishing. He also enjoyed camping and did a lot of local motor home traveling. He was a member of the Elks, Moose and Eagles Lodges and American Legion. He enjoyed spending time with his friends there, many of whom he considered family.
He is survived by his wife of 46 years Ellie; daughter Shandra, son-in-law John and two grandchildren Nicholas and Ashley of Idaho. He is also survived by a brother Virgil and three nephews Rodney, Randy and Tim Konschak all of Lodi.
Gordy graciously donated his body to UC Davis for medical research in the spirit of hope and helping future generations. There will be no service, as that was Gordy's request and will be respected as such. Any donations may be made to the California Grapettes Fast-pitch Softball Organization in his name to continue his legacy.
Published in Lodi News-Sentinel from July 3 to July 10, 2013