Oakley Parker, born Dec. 23 1933 in Fishtail, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 28 in Carlsbad, Calif. Oakley was raised on a beautiful sheep ranch at the foothills of the Montana Rockies where he rode horseback to school and enjoyed his country upbringing.
He loved sharing many fond memories of his life growing up with his parents, Oakley and Nell, and his sister Joyce and brother David. The Parker family regularly left the cold Montana winters to spend time in the mild climate of Newport Beach where they met life-long friends Jo and Ester Dendel who mentored and inspired Oakley throughout his life. Newport Beach introduced him to the love of the sea and all California had to offer. The Parker’s love of California led them from Montana to a new ranch in Fort Bragg, Calif., where Oakley attended and graduated from Fort Bragg High School in 1952. Oakley lived there until attending University of Nevada, Reno where he received a degree in Agricultural Economics in 1956. With Jo Dendel's influence, Oakley then built his mother's home in Newport Beach launching the foundation of his new career. Oakley’s budding construction business led him to Tulelake, Calif., where he built a home for his SAE fraternity brother, John Staunton.
It was in Tulelake where he met his best friend and love of his life, Johnelle Takacs. Oakley and Johnelle married in Tulelake in 1963. They lived in Newport Beach before moving to Carlsbad, in 1964, where they started their family. In 1971, Oakley built their family home where they raised their two daughters, Kappy and Sarah, and son, Oakley Jobe. In Carlsbad, Oakley continued his career in construction, building customhouses and apartments throughout San Diego County. Oakley’s construction career provided him free time to travel with his family in their motor home to various parts of the United States, Mexico and Canada usually in search of the best fishing. This love of motor homing led him to building his own custom motor home designed to internally carry a jeep with his fishing boat in tow. After extensive time motor-homing in Mexico, Oakley and Johnelle built a traditional Mexican thatched-roof home in Los Barriles, Baja Sur on the beautiful Sea of Cortez.
It was here in this holiday home that Oakley created the idyllic setting for countless good times with family and friends. Oakley invented many innovative gadgets designed to “make life easier”; the 80-foot removable rolling dock being one of his grandest inventions that everyone enjoys. Among Oakley’s many passions in life, he enjoyed wood working, tinkering in his shop, sport fishing, and traveling with friends around the world to exotic locations; and through out all, spending time with his family and friends. Fortunately, Oakley and Johnelle were recently able to celebrate and share their time together with many family and friends at their 50th wedding anniversary. Words cannot express how much he will be missed. Oakley is survived by his wife, Johnelle, his sister Joyce Lehman, daughter, Kappy Venezia, and son-in-law, Sean Venezia, son, Oakley Jobe Parker, and daughter-in-law Gillian Parker, and daughter Sarah Joy Lywood, and son-in-law Tony Lywood along with seven grandchildren: Natalie, Bridgette, and Nicholas Parker Venezia, Madeline and William Oakley Parker and Nelly and Railay Lywood.
Remember Oakley with a smile, as we will all remember his. The family will hold a celebration of Oakley's life on Saturday Sept. 21, 2013 at 11 a.m. Burial at the Rosebud Cemetery and a reception at the Grizzly Bar following the burial.