Richard was the very definition of dedicated. He fully devoted himself to “the three F’s”—faith, family, and his fire department. He was an extremely hard worker and held down a full-time job on top of two side jobs to support his family. Tragically, Richard lost his battle with COVID-19 on August 23, 2021, after a lengthy battle. He was a devoted husband and would have celebrated his 35th wedding anniversary on August 31, 2021, just seven days after he passed away. He and his wife, Lisa, have two amazing sons and four beautiful grandchildren. His family was truly his greatest joy.
Richard began his career as a volunteer firefighter with the Union Point Fire Department in Georgia. He spent over a decade on that department and continued to show his dedication by taking every opportunity to seek advanced training and certifications while there. He selflessly moved to the Athens, Georgia area in 2018 to support his wife in her new position as an RN. He never questioned this decision, even though he knew he would have to leave the volunteer fire department that he had been a part of for so long. He discovered the Winterville Fire Department in Winterville, Georgia, and quickly became an active member of that department. Richard continued to show his dedication and loyalty to his new department. In 2019, he was given the award for having run the most calls with the fire department. In 2020, his hard work and devotion were rewarded as he was named safety officer for the department.
The expression “He would give you the shirt off of his back.” was created with Richard in mind. One day on his way to work he saw a young woman and child broken down on the side of the road. He pulled over to the side of the road to assist the young mother and noticed she was shivering. Seeing this, Richard literally took the shirt he was wearing and gave it to the woman so that she would not have to be cold. He never expected or asked for recognition for any of the many good deeds he did throughout his life.
Richard enjoyed researching genealogy in his spare time and spent many hours tracing back his family ancestry. He enjoyed discussing politics and had no problem expressing his views and beliefs on the matter. Although his loss is felt deeply throughout his community, his family—which includes the members of the Winterville Fire Department—is comforted with the knowledge that he is at peace and that his legacy lives on.