November 10, 1935 - March 28, 2015
Richard was born in Oak Lawn, Illinois and lived there until he was 16 when his father moved the family to Dallas, where he had been offered a job by B.F. Goodrich.
The family lived close to the railroad Depot, where Richard spent much of his time, finagling rids in the cabs of the locomotives. He graduated high school at Sunset High in Dallas, and attended the University of Texas at Arlington where he studied electronics. He went to work for Chance-Vought in California where he worked on experimental aircraft at Lockheed. After a death in his family, he came back to Dallas, where he worked for Texas Instruments as an electronics engineering technician. He retired in 1998 after more than 30 years.
His lifelong passion was the history of the American Railroad. He would travel anywhere in the US to photograph a passing train, just to document engines and rail cars, rail yards, depots: anything related to the heyday of the industry. He loved the smell of a steam Locomotive, the smoke, the steam the cinders, all of it. He compiled an extensive knowledge of the subject and many of his photographs have been published in various books on the subject of a particular railroad or era. He was a source of information for many modelers and railroad aficionados. He was a founding member of The Dallas-Fort Worth O Scale Modelers, and a lifelong member of the “Wabash Railroad Society” dedicated to preserving the memory of Steam Engines in their heyday. He was an avid collector of anything railroadinana, from engine bells and lights, to switch stands and signs, dinner menus and timetables. He would have had a caboose if he had a way to bring it home.
He is survived by his friend and wife of 40 years, Judy, and a sister, Susan Ratcliff of Irving Texas. He leaves behind many lifelong friends from his railroad friends those he worked with, and a treasure trove of memories. He will be dearly missed by too many to enumerate.
A Celebration of his life will be held at 11:00 A.M., Tuesday, April 7, 2015 at ARIA Memorial Chapel.
Arrangements are under the direction of
ARIA Cremation Service and Funeral Home
19310 Preston Road
Dallas, Texas 75252
Overflow parking is located at Lowe’s parking lot just east of Toyota’s parking lot. Toyota of Plano has a towing policy and will not allow any parking for funerals in their parking areas. Management at Lowe’s, however, offers their condolences and welcomes any overflow to their parking area.
To express your sympathy with a flower arrangement please contact our florist.