| Richard (Rick) Allen McClendon, Sr., age 73 of Northport passed away Friday, February 10th at Hospice of West Alabama with his family by his side.
Rick was born in Decatur, AL on June 2, 1949 to Samuel L. (Fate) McClendon and Faye Blackwell McClendon. Upon graduation from Decatur High School, he enlisted in the Army Reserves spending time in Germany before returning stateside and enrolling in college at the University of Alabama. On March 15, 1969, Rick married his childhood friend and sweetheart, Judi, who was also attending school at BAMA. Legend has been told that Ricky once kissed his school-crush Judi on the playground in third grade only to get paddled after she told a teacher on him. They remained married for nearly 45 years before parted by death.
As a child, Rick aspired to be an architect but chose a crimson and white degree over an architectural degree from any neighboring school. He eventually fulfilled this lifelong passion to be an architect by designing and building a home on Lake Tuscaloosa, where his family continues to live today.
During their early years together, Rick owned a leather shop inside Mack’s Bait Shop where he handcrafted and sold custom leather goods ranging from sandals, bags, belts, hats, and more. After graduating from the University of Alabama School of Business, Rick worked for First National Bank in downtown Tuscaloosa. He would go on to establish Wooden Wildlife, where he carved and painted decorative wooden decoys and other custom homewares.
In 1983, Rick founded Ashlen Manufacturing Company, Inc, naming the business after his two children Allen and Ashlee. Around this same time, Rick became a founding member of the Tannehill Woodcarvers Club and acted as the inaugural President, serving the first two terms.
Visitation will be 10:00 am Tuesday, February 14, 2023 at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Tuscaloosa, AL. Services will immediately follow at 11:00 am with Monseignor Michael Deering officiating and Norwood/Wyatt directing.
He was preceded in death by his loving wife Judith (Judi) Spiegel McClendon of Northport, AL, his parents, and his brother Randall Benton McClendon of Decatur, AL.
He is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Richard (Allen) McClendon Jr. and Annie McClendon of Northport, AL; his daughter and son-in-law, Ashlee McClendon Potter and Edward Christian Potter of Charleston, SC; grandchildren, Grayson Lewis McClendon and Sadie Elizabeth McClendon (Northport, AL), Rylee Nicole Potter, Emory James Potter, and Lucy Allen Potter (Charleston, SC); sister Sherry M. Blackwell of Rome, GA; brother Barrett (Barry) McClendon of Gulf Shores; and nephew Daniel McClendon of Decatur, AL.
Special thanks to Dr. Debell, Dr. Costa, the staffs of UAB and DCH Regional Medical Center, and Hospice of West Alabama, and Holy Spirit Catholic Church.