May 4, 1931 to December 15, 2015
Longtime Downey resident Richard Louis Tonkovich died in Orange County on December 15 after many months of gentle and generous hospice care. Thank you, Hospice Care of the West and Heart of Shadowlands board and care! Tonkovich, born to Susan and Louis Tonkovich in Great Falls, Montana in 1931, was preceded in death by his wife Dagmar Tonkovich nee Gozdziewicz, a European war refugee. The couple courted and wed in Lynwood at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, bought a home in Downey, later attended Messiah Lutheran Church, raised two sons, participated in public school activities and youth sports leagues and lived together in the same Dalen Street address for nearly 50 years. Richard worked as a Certified Public Accountant, maintaining his license until only recently. He worked for four decades as an auditor with a federal governmental oversight agency, inspecting Apollo program facilities and other Southland defense and aerospace contractor sites. Proud of his years of civil service, Richard enjoyed a busy retirement full of volunteering, travel and maintaining weekend homes at both the beach and in the local mountains. He is survived by sons John Tonkovich of Los Angeles and Andrew Tonkovich of Orange County, grandson Louis and daughter-in-law Lisa Alvarez as well as brothers Kenneth and Paul and beloved nieces and nephews. He was interred with Dagmar, whom he loved dearly, at Forest Lawn, Cypress.