Richard Bedford “Cajun'' Vallotton passed away peacefully on December 17, 2021, at Maysville Nursing Home. Richard was a resident of Maysville and former resident of Flemingsburg; Knoxville, TN; Albuquerque, NM; MacDonald, TN; Cumberland City, TN; Harrodsburg, KY; and Pineville, LA. To say he was a wanderer is an understatement.
Richard’s life began, though, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on November 28, 1939, born to Leola Achord Vallotton and Hezzie Alford Vallotton. Dickie, as he was known to his family, was the first of six children, with Audrey, Nancy, Judi, Hezzie, and Billy following.
After a short stint in the US Navy, several trips as a long-haul truck driver, some odd jobs here and there, he finally settled on structural ironwork, union-only, of course. Richard became a union Ironworker in 1964, and was a 34-year retired member of Union Ironworkers Local 44 in Hebron, KY.
Richard married Geraline Webb Craig on February 16, 1963, and became an instant family with two sons, Keith and David, in tow. Another son, Dale, was added to the family soon after. Three sons, and eight years later, Richard and Geraline welcomed a daughter, Lori, and three years later, another daughter, Alicia. The sons were a handful, so it’s good they had daughters later in life. He became a member of the Douglas Avenue Baptist Church in Baton Rouge in 1970.
Richard was an avid tree fisherman, occasional collector of unused hunting gear and leaky boats, sporadic resident of tents and campers, and annual Christmas tree hunter. He was fond of his children and grandchildren as evidenced by the many greeting cards he sent, and was always happy to receive. “Cajun” enjoyed being around people and socializing, and was a member or interloper, at some point, of the American Legion, VFW, Fraternal Order of Eagles, and Loyal Order of Moose.
Through love, laughter, hard work, heartbreak, and struggle, Richard endured. Only Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) could take him down.
Richard is preceded in death by his Father, Hezzie “Sam” Vallotton; Mother, Leola Achord Vallotton; grandson, Andrew L. Vallotton; daughter, Alicia G. Vallotton; son, David L. Craig; grandson, G. Christopher Gee; and brother, William O. “Billy” Vallotton. He is survived by his wife, Geraline Webb Vallotton; sons, Keith (Wendy Cress) Craig of Hillsboro, OH, and Richard Dale (Elena) Vallotton of Angola, IN; daughter-in-law, Marilyn Craig of Knoxville, TN; daughter, Lori (Terrence) Roe of Warsaw, IN; Sisters, Audrey Sheldon, Nancy Fooshee, Judith (Keith) Wyatt, and Hezzie Nolan; Grandchildren Latisha Gee, Shane McCray, Travis McCray, Shelby Craig, Robin Mitchell, Brett Vallotton, Keely Roe, and Griffin Roe; friends Walter and Karen Trymbulak and family of Windsor, Ontario; 17 great grandchildren, 5 great-great-grandchildren; and in-laws, nieces, nephews, friends and their children too numerous to name.
We will all miss Richard and will strive to live our lives to the fullest in his honor.
Public visitation will be Tuesday, December 21, 2021, at Noon, with funeral service to follow at 2 PM at Michael R. Gray Funeral Home, 405 South Main Cross Street, Flemingsburg, Kentucky 41041.
Burial will follow in the Fleming County Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the ALS Association Kentucky Chapter or Hospice of Hope in Maysville.