Jody Ray McCollough
Jody Ray McCollough

September 13, 1955 - October 30, 2017
Born in Rantoul, IL
Resided in Aurora, Colorado
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Obituary

JODY RAY McCOLLOUGH, 62, died of cancer on Oct. 30, 2017 in Aurora, CO.

Jody was born Sept. 13, 1955, on Chanute AFB in Rantoul, IL. Growing up in an Air Force family meant travel and Jody lived in or visited Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, DC, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and Japan. Jody called Aurora, CO, home since 1970.

Jody was preceded in death by his Dad, Max Gale McCollough (13 June 1919-22 April 1987), his Mom, Lois Arlene (nee: Lunde) McCollough (14 Aug 1927-01 Feb 1988), and a brother, Patrick Gale McCollough (08 July 1949-28 Mar 2003). Jody is survived by his brother, Robert Michael McCollough, Lincoln, NE, his sister, Nancy Jo McCollough, Aurora, CO, and five nieces and nephews.

Jody graduated from Adams City High School, Commerce City, CO, where he was in the Mountaineering Club and ROTC. His time in the Mountaineering Club held some of his favorite memories and experiences. He also attended the Art Institute of Colorado, which enhanced his natural artistic abilities. Family and friends have enjoyed his many beautiful, sometimes comical, sometimes unusual, paintings and drawings. In the last few years, Jody began creating wooden boxes and succeeded in building not just simple and beautiful boxes, but also boxes of intricate shapes with hidden drawers and sliding locks that were fun and challenging to explore. Being an artist himself, Jody also enjoyed museums and had an interest in art books from all eras.

After graduating from high school, Jody held various jobs such as working for a landscape company, at a cartography company, and at Wilkerson Company where he designed a specific part that the company then began producing. In 1982, Jody began working for Hughes Aircraft Company in Aurora, CO. This became Jody’s career and he held several different positions during his 32 year tenure. Over the years, he was a draftsman, graphic designer, web designer, and also was in corporate communications and corporate graphics. Many employees of the company counted on Jody to create drawings, posters, charts, logos, and many other artistic items. Several employees also had Jody create artwork for them separate from his job. Hughes Aircraft Company was eventually bought by Raytheon Company, and Jody retired from Raytheon in April of 2014. Jody thoroughly enjoyed his retirement years; following his own schedule and being his own boss were of major importance to Jody and he was quite happy.

In 2005, Jody bought a van and had it customized inside to become his home away from home when participating in his love of astronomy. He had several telescopes and would travel in Colorado and parts of Wyoming to attend star gazing events. He was a member of the Denver Astronomical Society and participated in Chamberlin Observatory events that were attended by the general public, both children and adults, and Jody enjoyed letting people view the stars through his telescopes. He enjoyed explaining and describing the skies above us, and hoped to inspire and interest others in learning about our universe and beyond. He also participated in several star gazing events held at the Plains Conservation Center in Aurora, where a number of astronomers taught and showed the Boy Scouts/Cub Scouts about the stars. He got a kick out of the kids’ excitement during these events.

Jody possessed a natural curiosity and was interested in so many areas of learning, such as art, ancient history, politics, movies, music, science fiction, astronomy, crossword puzzles, and he was also an avid reader.

Those of us close to Jody McCollough will miss his “adventure stories”, his sense of humor (the way he could make us laugh!), his fiery political conversations, and his overall character.

In Jody’s own words: “I want to keep reminding myself that I am 62 years old and have lived a life largely on my own terms. It's been a pretty good run.”

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Funeral Home
Horan & McConaty - Parker
11150 East Dartmouth Avenue (at Parker Road)
Aurora, CO US 80014