Last updateSat, 23 Sep 2017 8pm

Richard "Dick" Speelmon (75)

The “Big Dude” was born in Sutherland, Utah, on April 3, 1941. Richard Lawrence “Dick” Speelmon grew up in Utah and on a farm in Idaho and moved to California at age 18. He attended mortuary school in San Francisco, and he then moved to the Fresno area for work.

Dick enlisted in The Air National Guard in 1963. Dick married his bride Frances Haire on July 25, 1964. They were blessed with four children through the years. Dick became a Madera resident and began working as a Funeral Director at Jay Chapel in 1967, and he became a co-owner and Vice President in 1973 where he remained until the sale of the business this year, 2016.

Shawn Allen Gran (51)

Shawn Allen Gran (51) was better known as the guy selling you popcorn and movie tickets at Parks Plaza Theatre in Buellton, and it was his greatest pleasure to do so. Born December 20th, 1964 in Pomona, CA to Robert and Dian Gran, Shawn was a third generation movie theatre owner and operator. He spent much of his early life in Santa Maria.

At the age of three months, his family bought the boarded up Park-Aire Drive-In on Donovan road. Living with his parents and two brothers in a small apartment under the movie screen, he worked from the time he could walk. Shawn and his brothers helped the family develop a movie and drive-in theatre empire throughout California and Arizona.

Local Childrens Musician Loses Battle with Cancer: Oklin Bloodworth Passes at 66

MADERA - Oklin Bloodworth passed away on Sunday, September 11, 2016 at the age of 66. He was born to Oklin and Fannie Bloodworth in Fort Worth, TX and a resident of Madera, CA for the past 62 years. Oklin graduated from Madera High School, class of 1968.

In the early 1990’s Oklin started preforming by playing and singing at children’s events throughout the San Joaquin Valley. Many years he worked for the Madera County Arts Council PACES program, performing for the Madera Unified School District. Oklin brought a smile to children’s faces, he loved to perform for the children and they loved to sing and dance along with him.

Sgt. Charles Reiring (68)

Sgt. Chuck Reiring (68), a native of Burbank, CA and a resident of Madera, CA for 56 years passed away suddenly Saturday, September 3, 2016 at a Madera hospital. He was a Deputy Sheriff for Madera County Sheriff Office working for 32 years until his retirement in 2003.

Chuck was preceded in death by his father, Leonard Reiring.

Former Owner of Local 7 Eleven Dies: Terry O'Neal (83)

Michael "Terry" O'Neal (83) passed away on Thursday, September 1, 2016. Terry was born in Netherland West India, Aruba and a resident of Madera, CA for 40 years. Terry worked as a Correctional Officer in Madera County for 20 years. He also owned and operated the 7 Eleven on Howard and Schnoor for 6 years.

Terry was preceded in death by his daughter Patricia “Kathleen” Cunningham and his brother King O’Neal.

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