“Buddy”, as known by all, passed away on January 2, 2021 at Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Hospital. Buddy was born in Santa Barbara, CA to George Martin Makela, Sr., and Lucille Goux on August 15, 1934 at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. He was predeceased by his sister, Gladys Meloling, and brother, Arthur Makela.
Buddy is survived by his wife, Eloise, his daughters, Christie Ruelas and Shelley Foy (husband Kelly), and grandchildren, Marissa Ruelas, Nick Ruelas, Logan Foy, Harrison Foy and Preston Foy. He was a very involved “Papa”, always attending his grandkids dance performances and many sporting events. You could count on seeing him at Marissa's Fiesta dances, and at as many of Nick, Logan, Harrison and Preston's baseball, football, soccer and basketball games as he could attend. No drive was too far for him to proudly watch his talented grandkids perform!
Buddy attended Wilson Elementary, La Cumbre Junior High, Santa Barbara High School and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. He married Eloise Mendoza Makela on May 27, 1956 at Our Lady of Sorrows Church in Santa Barbara, and enjoyed 64 years together. Upon their Marriage, Buddy and Eloise moved to Santa Ynez in 1956.
Buddy purchased the Santa Ynez Chevron gas station from John Loustalot in 1956 and sold it two years later when he became a carpenter. During his career he worked for Imbach & Harrison, Madsen & Jaeger, and Gandolfo Construction. Buddy built many commercial buildings and homes throughout the valley. In fact, he built 3 of the family homes, including the current Santa Ynez home. Until his retirement in 1991, Buddy mentored many of today's carpenters and contractors. Buddy was a founding member of the Santa Ynez Valley Elks Lodge, and was also a member of the Santa Ynez Valley Sportsman's Lodge. He loved the outdoors and enjoyed hunting and fishing with his pals, especially deer hunting on horseback in Colorado.
Throughout his marriage, Buddy also love dancing with Eloise whenever the opportunity arose, and will always be remembered proudly wearing his cowboys boots. Upon retirement, Buddy and Eloise enjoyed traveling and frequently cruised to Mexico, the Caribbean and Alaska. His favorite trip of all, was the one he took to Australia where he visited Sydney, Melbourne and Cairns in 1998. Buddy always enjoyed playing cards with family and friends, and was a good sport when he recently joined Eloise and her lady friends to take the 6th seat at their monthly card game. Buddy's card playing legend will live on, as the family will continue to get together and play the games he loved.
We love and miss you, but we will be comforted by all of the great memories you left for us!
Due to the pandemic, services will be announced at a later date.
Loper Funeral Chapel, Directors
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