Obituary of Cleary Cone
Cleary Stuart Cone, 91, passed away March 25, 2018 in Bellingham after a brief illness. He is survived by his wife of 70 years, Aleen; daughters Cindy Cone (Federal Way, WA) and Alison Cone (Rancho Mirage, CA); grandson Justin Cone (Carol) of Everett; and great grandchildren Russell and Jordan Cone. He was preceded in death by his parents Dwight and Bernice (Cleary) Cone; sister Janice Bayless and son Edward Cone. Early years were spent in Custer, Birch Bay and Ferndale where he developed lifelong friends and a wicked fastball.
Cleary was selected for the Army Specialized Training Reserve Program (ASTRP) at WSU and is a WWII veteran.
Playing baseball for the Bellingham Bells and other semi-pro teams, “Lefty” Cone pitched several perfect games, and once struck out 36 batters over two games in one weekend. In 1947, he was awarded the Washington Semi-pro Outstanding Player.
He opted to enter law school at the University of Washington, after declining an invitation to train with the New York Yankees and a principal appointment to West Point. He graduated with honors from law school and joined a law practice in Ellensburg, where he practiced for forty years. Never at a loss for words, he was often asked to MC local events.
Cleary served as President of the Washington State Bar Association in 1973-74, and in 1981, received the award of Merit and Honor for outstanding service to the legal profession and the people of Washington. He was named a life member and Fellow at the American Bar Association, was a member of the House of Delegates to the American Bar Association, and was a Fellow of the American College of Probate Counsel. in 1987, he was named a “Distinguished Alumnus” of the UW Law School.
Upon retirement, they moved to Sandy Point and he became active in Rotary and the Hobby Club. He was honored to receive a lifetime “Honorary” membership to the Rotary Club of Bellingham.
His biggest accomplishment was marrying the love of his life, Aleen, who he still courted with their weekly “date nights” after 70 years of marriage. He retained his legendary humor through his life, recently suggesting that “In lieu of flowers, please bring a good bottle of red wine”. Cleary lived a full and complete life that we will celebrate on Saturday, March 31, at 1:00 pm, at Moles Farewell Tributes, 2465 Lakeway Drive, Bellingham. Memorials may be made to the Chuckanut Feline Center, 1214 Dupont Street, Bellingham, WA 98225, or your favorite charity. Please visit the online guest book at www.molesfarewelltributes.com.