Obituary of Wally C. Markwood
Wallace “Wally” C. Markwood, age 90, passed away on March 23, 2019 at Whatcom Hospice House in Bellingham, Washington. Wally was born on March 19, 1929 in Bellingham to Cecil and Hanley Belle Markwood. On April 8, 1949, at the age of 20, Wally married the love of his life, Delores L. Raplee.
Wally was ambitious and enthusiastic when it came to work and play. He was a phenomenal salesperson at Diehl Ford for many years, earning the coveted titles of Top Salesman and 500 Club Winner. He was the president of the Road Gents car club and head of the first and only drag strip in Bellingham in 1952. He was even featured in Hot Rod Magazine, showcasing the Road Gents in a 1954 issue.
Wally also had a real passion for the outdoors. He established and owned Markwood Kennels for 42 years, where he raised and trained hunting dogs. This notable line of work earned him the spotlight in many newspaper articles, and he even appeared on local TV.
Wally also was a dedicated contributor for 42 years to the Blossom Time Parade, and had the honor of driving many Bellingham and Ferndale dignitaries over the years.
In 1982, Wally opened Thunderbird Vintage, a specialty restoration shop. He restored many antique automobiles that went on to win trophies and awards all over the country.
Wally and Delores were also members of the Elk Lodge, and were known to spend many a night dancing into the wee hours. Wally became trustee and was in charge of hiring bands and overseeing dinners.
These are just a few of Wally’s many favorite pastimes. He had always loved horseback riding from a young age, as well as lake fishing, and boating in the San Juans. He was an avid dirt biker and loved racing, especially in the Cowbell. He also loved big game hunting in Canada and Alaska, as well as pheasant and duck hunting all over the state of Washington.
In 1988, Wally and Delores purchased a Birch Bay Beach House, where the family spent many fun-filled days on the beach, crabbing, and having lots of family get togethers. Wally was incredibly loved, and will be deeply missed by so many.
Wally is survived by his wife of nearly 70 years, Delores Markwood; his sister Wilhelmine Vanluven; his brother Darrell (Nancy) Markwood; his children Renee Amos, Brad (Suzan) Markwood, Kim Markwood, Pam (Mike) Rorvig; grandchildren Ryan Markwood, Eric Markwood, Martie Amos, Patric Amos, Casey Rorvig, Sara Rorvig, Crystal (Ian) Willett; great-grandchildren Mik Willett and Baya Willett; nephew Steve Vanluven, and niece Lonnie (Mike) Segal.
A memorial service and reception will be held on Tuesday April 2, 2019 at 10:00 AM at Moles Greenacres Memorial Park – 5700 Northwest Dr. Ferndale, Washington.