Cover photo for R. Leo Dow's Obituary
R. Leo

R. Leo Dow

d. May 3, 2023

 

Richard ‘Leo’ Dow entered into eternal peace on May 3rd, 2023 at age 96. He is survived by his former wife, Helen Anaya Dow of Tijeras, and their adult children: Donna & Clarence Garcia, Ricardo & Joyous Dow, Harold & Jill Dow, Janice & Ron Blasing, Shirley & Jim Thompson, Evelyn Dow, and Aaron & Karla Dow.  As well as 71 grand, great and great-great, grandchildren. He is also survived by sisters Priscilla and Helen, and brother Robert Dow, Sr. with over fifty nieces and nephews in the Dow family and more than a hundred in the Anaya family of multiple generations.

Leo is preceded in death by his beloved son, Anthony ‘Tony’ Dow, his parents Elisha and Claudina Dow of Chilili, NM, his brothers Jimmy, Arthur, Ernest, Archie and Orlando Dow and his sister-in-law’s Mary, Florence (Rusty), Ramona, and Andie Dow.

Leo was born in 1926 in Chilili, New Mexico and worked hard his entire life. He started building barns and cuartito’s in his teens, and served in the U.S. Army, during WWII. He was very proud of his military service and that people everywhere thanked him for it until the day he passed. After the war ended, he returned home, purchased a truck and hauled wheat, beans, potatoes and vigas throughout the Southwest. Leo and Helen married in 1948 and are blessed with five living generations! In the 1950’s, Leo owned a grocery store in Martineztown, two liquor stores in the 60’s, and built a restaurant and lounge in Albuquerque’s North Valley in late-60’s and 1970’s (Leonardo’s). Certainly, a steadfast entrepreneur from 1950 to 1990, he was elected to public office by age 40 serving as NM State Senator from 1967-1976 for District 32 (became District 10). During his public service, Leo co-sponsored and moved legislation forward for office terms, districting, mining and railroad safety, workers comp benefits, right to work, increase in minimum wage, appeals standards, returned Blue Lake to Taos Pueblo, passed the first White Cane Law in the US in protection of blind pedestrians, preservation of the Cumbres Toltec scenic railroad, made the Commission on the Status of Women an agency, established the first NM Film Commission, supported education and the creation of Albuquerque TVI (now CNM), supported agriculture, and among his favorite efforts – worked diligently to establish NM Greenbelt Law.

During his Senate career, and along with his brother, Arthur Dow, he introduced Pete V. Domenici to every corner of New Mexico in the early 1970’s. Leo and Pete were good friends from early years of baseball and produce deliveries. That chapter of his life is filled with good memories and Leo could tell a story for all 33 NM counties and meeting New Mexicans of all backgrounds statewide. He loved our state and said many times that he was born in the best place on earth. After serving two Senate terms, Leo won the primary for Lt. Governor becoming part of the Skeen/Dow ticket in 1978. Losing the race by a narrow 1% margin, Leo remained active in politics with appointments to Bernalillo County Commission, Republican Party Central Committee and NM Athletic Commission.  He never missed an opportunity to vote for every local or national election and encouraged his family and all citizens to do the same. Leo proudly knew, met, or shook hands with seven U.S. Presidents, and summed a lot up with a handshake.

Leo’s other favorite pastime was watching his sons and grandkids play ball; he rarely missed a basketball or football game and many soccer games too. After selling the business and ending his political career, Leo retired to ranching in Chilili in 1997. Chilili was his first love, and carpentry his second. His daughter, Evelyn Dow, often reminded him, “Don’t worry Dad, old carpenters never die they just build another story.

Pallbearers include Leo’s nephews – Walter Dow, Ernest ‘Red’ Dow, Gary Dow, and his grandsons – Andres Dow, Christopher Simpson, and Manuel Andres Padilla. Honorary pallbearers include Ricardo Dow y Anaya, Lourdes Dow de Trujillo, Paulette ‘Paula’ Miller, Juan Sanchez, Edward Lujan and Leo Nunez. Celebration of Life services will be held on Friday, May 12, 2023 and are arranged through Gabaldon Mortuary at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church (1860 Griegos Rd. NW 87107) with public viewing at 10:00a.m., Rosary at 10:30a.m., Mass at 11:00a.m., and internment at Mt. Calvary Cemetery (1900 Edith Blvd. NE, 87102) at 12:30pm.  Reception follows at CNM Workforce Training Center, 5600 Eagle Rock Ave NE 87113.

The Dow family would like to extend special and sincere gratitude to staff and specialists at The Veterans Administration in Albuquerque, Morada Senior Living, La Vita Bella, Presbyterian Hospice, and Gabaldon Mortuary, as well as countless friends, relatives, and colleagues for their help and support during difficult months. In lieu of flowers or cash contributions, the family requests donations to Catholic Charities of Central New Mexico in Special Tribute to Leo Dow for lifelong service and giving to the community.

To send flowers to the family in memory of R. Leo Dow, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, May 12, 2023

10:00 - 10:30 am (Mountain time)

Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church

1860 Griegos Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87107

Get Directions

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Rosary

Friday, May 12, 2023

10:30 - 11:00 am (Mountain time)

Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church

1860 Griegos Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87107

Get Directions

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Friday, May 12, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Mountain time)

Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church

1860 Griegos Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87107

Get Directions

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Interment

Friday, May 12, 2023

12:30 - 1:00 pm (Mountain time)

Get Directions

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Guestbook

Visits: 1113

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers