Richard's storyLisa A. Tempe, Arizona
Richard will always be Dad, Papa, Dick, Your Honor and the patriarch of the family. Somehow I was blessed with the most amazing man as my Father. He taught me the importance of family, love, respect, and commitment. Always putting others before him, he was the ultimate selfless person. Sometimes he had to play all roles in the family, other times he chose to do so but through every high and low in life, he remained a rock, an inspiration, an amazing husband and father, and a source of reason. When he would drive in circles at the airport in San Diego or around the Spanish Steps in Rome, he would always find a way to make us laugh even at his expense. So many amazing memories of him in his little convertible, running up to get us triple treats, taking us to San Diego, across Europe, his love of his dogs, and joining in my excitement when I ditched school to go to the Phoenix Open! He did not tell you not to do something- he expressed himself so you would make a choice, offering his advice on what he felt best. He has always made his loved ones feel safe, cherished and optimistic. His son in law and daughter in law are loved by him like his own. His grandchildren and their new spouses adore him as their “Papa.” He has made others feel welcome as part of our family. Throughout his life, he never complained, ever. He was an amazing judge who always wanted to see the best in people. As he now struggles with this awful disease, ironically referred to as Lou Gehrig's disease given Papa himself was drafted over 65 years ago, he still never complains. He keeps looking for a cure. He will beat it and every day his family prays that his fight and its positive attitude will show it can be beat! This photo shows his granddaughter’s wedding. He walked out for the ceremony with me, walking me down the aisle 31 years after he first did. Now watching his granddaughter marry her true love, the sun came out for the ceremony and the rain subsided so we could have a beautiful celebration. My family and I hope all those impacted by ALS will see the sun finally come out and eradicate the suffering so we can all keep smiling!