Former Puyallup Mayor Donald Malloy passed away May 1 at age 84 following a battle with liver cancer.
Malloy served on the Puyallup City Council for 20 years and was mayor for two terms.
Former coworkers of Malloy’s remember him as a strong leader with goals of improving the quality of life for Puyallup and its citizens.
“Don was a real gentleman,” said Mike Deal, a former Puyallup mayor and city council member who was a friend of Malloy’s. “He was always a pleasant person, very optimistic and progressive. He was really interested in improving the city.”
Malloy moved to Puyallup in 1977, after he finished his last assignment for the U.S. Air Force in Phoenix. He taught in the Franklin-Pierce School District before becoming assistant principal at Ferrucci Junior High.
Malloy became involved with the city after applying to be a part of Puyallup’s Board of Adjustment, said Milloy’s son, Brad.
“Dad was always interested in politics, even at an early age,” Brad said. “He enjoyed local politics.”
Malloy’s first term as mayor was from 2000 to 2001; his second term was 2008 to 2009. Under Malloy’s service, many projects to improve the city were completed, including the development of the Pioneer Park Pavilion and Bradley Lake Park. He also supported the Shaw Road extension project, construction of the skate park and Riverwalk Trail.
“During the time we were both on the city council, there was a lot of progress in the city,” Deal said.
“He and I supported wonderful, great projects together that will live on in this community forever, such as City Hall or the library or Senior Center,” said Kathy Turner, former Puyallup mayor and council member.
Malloy was Puyallup’s mayor the day that the current City Hall building was dedicated, on August 8, 2008.
“It was a proud moment we all shared,” remembered Turner, who served on the council at the time. “People for years will celebrate the completion of those projects.”
It was clear to Malloy’s coworkers that he was also a loving father and husband. Malloy would always hold the hand of his wife, Ivonette, wherever they went, Turner said. The two were married for more than 50 years.
“Don always was an incredible family man,” Turner said. “His wife was his soul mate and his life partner, and he worshiped her.”
“He was a great father, involved in the life of his kids and his grandkids,” Brad said. “He was always there when someone needed to talk to him. Family was always first. I remember we could call his work and our calls would always be put right through to him.”
Malloy had three children and three grandchildren. After his wife passed away, he moved to Seattle. He was diagnosed with stage four liver cancer in April.
“A leader like him is always a loss in the community,” Turner said. “He will be missed by many. He’ll be missed by me – his leadership, his friendship. But he’ll always have a place in my heart. He’s a pretty special man.”
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