Richard Gary Bilberry

bilberry obit pic.jpg

Richard Gary Bilberry

At 6’5” tall, Richard Bilberry was a big man with an even bigger heart. Richard Gary Bilberry, 60, of St Johns, AZ was born June 23, 1952 in Superior. He passed away Feb. 2, 2013 in Springerville, AZ.

He worked at Kennecott Copper in Ray, AZ as a Steam Clean Operator; an Electrician for Magma Copper Co. in Superior; an Instrumentation Tech for Pardee Dam in California; Gunsmith; and Butcher, for Mr. Wing in Superior.

His many talents and interests included anything electrical, taking pictures, welding, mechanical work, gunsmith, plumbing, and building anything. He was an avid outdoorsman who loved to hunt and go shooting. He would jump on his quad just to go out and scout or sightsee in the outdoors. Richard also served relentlessly on the Apache County Sheriff’s Posse.

Richard was kind and generous to a fault and was always willing to help anyone in need; his family, friends, and strangers. He loved people who could keep up with his wit and sense of humor and enjoyed the different occasions when his family could all be together. He was an example of integrity for his children, grandchildren and family. He was Papa or “Big Pa” to his grandkids and “Uncle Richard” to all of his many nieces and nephews (even though some of them were almost as old as him).

Richard was preceded in death by his parents, Jack and Lillie Bilberry, his father- and mother-in-law, Tony and Rebecca Hunt; and his stepdaughter, Antonia Vallejos.

He is survived by his wife, Loretta Hunt Bilberry; son, Robert Bilberry (Julia) and grandchildren, Wyatt and Magdalena of Plymouth, CA; daughter, Katherine (Joe) Thomas and grandchildren, Joseph and Justin of Jackson, CA; stepchildren, Connie Barrerras of Lakeside, AZ and grandchildren, Jason and Ashley, Shannon (Clayton) McDonald; and grandchild, Couper of Valley Springs, CA; brother, Norman (Ruth) Bilberry of Young, AZ; sisters, Nancy Woolford of Apache Junction and Earleen (James Trail) Andrews, of Lakeside, AZ; and many nieces and nephews.

A Memorial Mass was held at St John the Baptist Catholic Church in St Johns, AZ.

Online condolences at www.burnhammortuary.com

Contributions can be made to Hospice of Compasses, 5408 Arizona Highway 260, Lakeside, AZ 85929.

June 23, 1952 – Feb. 2, 2013

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