Richard Sedy was a gentle giant. He loved to hunt, and he fixed up hot rods since he was in high school. His prized possession was a 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle. He was widely respected in the logging community and drove millions of miles in his log truck.
On Sunday, the 66-year-old from Castle Rock will be honored with a procession along Interstate 5. It will start at the racetrack at the Castle Rock fairgrounds and end at the Kelso Longview Elks Lodge near the Three Rivers Mall.
Sedy’s family and friends will start gathering at the fairgrounds at 11:30 a.m. Sunday. The procession — made up of log trucks, hot rods and the cars of anyone else who wants participate — will leave the fairgrounds at 12:30 p.m. The Elks Lodge will host a service for Sedy at 2 p.m.
Sedy died Dec. 28 from injuries sustained when his dump truck struck a tree off of Mount Pleasant Road. The truck was part of his company, Richard Sedy Trucking, LLC.
“He was taken from us way too early,” his wife of 48 years, Dixie, said Friday. “I really don’t know what I’m going to do without him.”
Sedy started the company in 1983 with the purchase of his first log truck. Eleven years later, his youngest daughter, Chasity, now 45, started work as the bookkeeper, a job she still has. Sedy’s oldest daughter, Michelle, now 47, worked briefly for the company in the early 2000s, helping clean up logging slash.
Sedy taught them both how to use the company equipment. His wife said he was great with all kinds of equipment. He could fix dishwashers, washing machines and cars.
Cars were a big part of the couple’s life. They had four classics, including the prized Chevelle. Dixie said they had one just like it, even the same gold-brown color, in 1974, shortly after they married in 1970. She was 16 and he was 17. She said the two grew up together in the local area.
“He just kept getting more handsome as he got older,” Dixie said. “We were each other’s best friends.”
Sedy grew up with three sisters and had two daughters.
“He knew how to talk to people,” Dixie said. “He just was a neat guy. He was 6-foot-5. He was a big guy but he was just a gentle giant”
They couple has three grandsons, all involved in the forestry industry: Carter Wheeler, 22, works in a cedar mill; Austin Sedy, 24, has worked for Richard’s company for two years; and Taylor Wheeler, 26, drives log trucks, too.
Mike Phelps, a friend of Sedy’s for 35 years, said the logging community loved and respected Sedy. He and Sedy worked closely, hauling logs along routes from California to the Canada border. The two bonded over how tall they were and their similar appearances, Phelps said.
“He was a wonderful guy that helped everybody out that needed him,” Phelps said. “No matter what, he was there — always.”
Phelps said Sedy nearly saved his life once. Phelps suffered a stroke about four years ago, and Sedy came to pick him up, set him up in a trailer and let Phelps stay on his property in exchange for helping with upkeep and maintenance. He still lives there.
“I can’t do a lot anymore, but it’s good therapy for me,” Phelps said of his chores at Sedy’s place. “All you had to do was call him up and tell him you were in trouble and he would say, ‘How can I help?’ ”
Sedy also helped out with logging industry causes. During the early 1990s spotted owl controversy, Sedy painted his favorite log truck black and red and would drive it during parades and other events to raise awareness of the needs of logging-dependent communities.
Sedy is remembered fondly for his love of cars and trucks, but his wife said he will be missed most during family barbecues and other gatherings.
“This is the hardest thing that I have ever had to do,” she said.