September 30, 1951 – May 6, 2019
With his wife and son beside him, Rick died at Hospice House in Kamloops 21 months after a tragic motorcycle accident.
He leaves behind his wife of 33 years Sue Pauwels; sons Adam and Colin (Amirah Foort); grandson Abel Richard; his devoted siblings in Ontario, Bob (Marg), Brenda Klietneks (Juris), Tim (Lynda), Jeff (Angela); mother-in- law Germaine Pauwels; sister-in-law Katherine Rockwell; brother-in-law Peter Pauwels (Charlene); stepson Jason Rathgeber; nieces, nephews, and cousins; countless friends, colleagues and customers; and beloved dogs Gravy, Nesta and Darla. He is predeceased by his father Talbert and mother Wanda.
We are profoundly saddened that Rick did not meet his beautiful baby grandson Abel Richard, born to Colin and Amirah on February 27, 2019. He was excited about becoming a grandfather and there is no doubt at all how much fun and love he would pour into that role if he could have.
Rick always stepped up and he never took lightly any role in his life, personally or professionally. He served every position he held in his career with public service and in retail with all his focus, energy and heart. As a husband, father, brother, friend or colleague, he loved to laugh with you and was also the guy you could tell anything to. He kept confidences and gave thoughtful guidance when asked. He liked nothing more than helping the people around him. There are many of us feeling heartbroken and unmoored with this loss.
As his family we are thankful for all the deep bonds Rick made, they created a vital support system for him and us through the difficult phase of his life after his accident. We have gratitude for Rick’s siblings who made every effort to travel from Ontario to see Rick and otherwise give their all in love and support to their brother. Thank you to dear friends Doug, Cathy, Bob and Gayle for the countless hours spent at the hospital in Victoria. And for all of you who made so many special efforts to reach out to us from near and far, your kindnesses remain in our hearts.
Thanks also to all the health care professionals at Rapid City Regional Hospital, Victoria General, North Island Comox Valley Hospital, Hillside Centre, Kamloops Hospice House; and Drs. Crowe and McLeod here in Courtenay. Rick was cared for with respect and tenderness by all.
We invite all whose lives were enriched or touched by Rick to attend a celebration of his life at Comox Valley Curling Club at 4835 Headquarters Road, Courtenay, BC on June 29, 2019 from 2-5 pm. Flowers gratefully declined. If you wish, donation to Comox Valley Hospice Society or charity of your choice.
He is loved beyond measure and we are all the better for knowing him.
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