Richard Lee Abney, a true cowboy at heart, spread love and shared lessons from yesterday to make others’ tomorrows a little brighter. Richard was born in the Haight Ashbury District of San Francisco, CA on December 10, 1953 . He spent some time as a child in Kentucky, then eventually made Fresno his home with his mother, sister and two brothers. Richard attended C.L McLane High School in Fresno prior to enlisting in the United States Marine Corps in 1972. He trained at Camp Pendleton, CA before spending three years aboard the USS Kittyhawk; he always had great pride for his country.
On September 1, 1990, Richard married his soul mate, Susan Penrod. Together, they raised a blended family in Atwater; this family became the driving force behind everything Richard did. The six children they raised together fondly called him Dad or Pops, two titles he loved.
In 1992, Richard went into business with his brother Mike and the duo owned and operated Abney Construction in Atwater until 2018. His passion for a well-done project was evident in every aspect of his work; he was known as a perfectionist. Even in recent years, he picked up a job every now and then because he absolutely loved hands-on work.
In the spring of 2019, Richard became ill. He fought like a warrior and demonstrated an incredible amount of determination and strength. He and Susan decided to purchase a travel trailer to tour the United States and they were able to make a handful of trips before he was too weak to go anymore. This summer they took their final trip to Nevada before coming home so Richard could make his transition to a better place, where he would no longer suffer.
On September 1, 2020, Richard and Susan celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary and Richard passed peacefully just three days later on September 4, 2020.
Richard Abney was preceded in death by his step father, Frank Garcia and sister, Becky Coster. He is survived by his loving wife of 30 years, Susan (Penrod) Abney and the six children they shared together: Michelle (Gerald) Lopez; Thaddeus (Luana) Stark; Nathan (Amber) Dailey; Sondra (David) Sackett; David (Lauren) Lanum; and Jim (Sophia) Lanum. He leaves behind his mother, Lupe Garcia and brothers Danny Abney and Mike (Donna) Abney to cherish his memory. The legacy of love and pride for his eleven grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, three nieces, extended family and a host of friends and neighbors is vast.
Richard would not want his family or friends to mourn his loss, but instead to celebrate the good times and love that was shared during his lifetime. Services will be private and internment will be at San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery, where Richard will be buried with military honors. In Richard’s memory, we will learn from yesterday and focus on all of our tomorrows.