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In Memory

Richard Stiles

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07/05/11 09:16 AM #1    

Douglass Dickmann

Stories about Rick.....Hmmmm!  Well, I might have 50 or so depending if you wanted pre, or post graduation.  If pre, then you all must remember Rick chasing freshmen across the front lawn of SM with his blue Maverick, getting his Dad called (one of many times) and having his car keys taken away by Zych.  Now there is a twist, Zych being a pretty descent football line coach, but a terrible politician, and cable TV broker as a city alderman.  There were many more "Rick" stories which you may remember, but the easiest one was near end of senior year, Rick planted a salute, or cherry bomb in the lavatory commode across from the "Mole's" chemistry lab on the second floor, and it went off during homeroom.  Jenkins, Roscoe Wess, and some other smokers came running out with a wall of water cascading behind them to which school was abrubtly cancelled on that floor until they could isolate and shut off the water supply to that rest room.  One of the smokers must have snitched on Rick because he saw me in the hall during one of our class changes and he told me Haug had just suspended him and his dad was coming to pick him up and make some arrangements to pay for the damages. 

The rest is no joke. We all tested, graduated, and had our parties, while Rick came back to SM in late June to take a "special" final exam.  He literally marked X's, and O's on a tick tack board drawn on the test papers and handed in the exam.  Guess what?  He passed. 

Rick was a daring sort, but as loveable as they come.  Rick did one good thing for me shortly before he passed.  He showed my oldest boy his many scars from drug abuse on his body and you should have seen my kid's face grimace!   My son told me later that it made a huge difference in his ability to refuse to give into peer pressure whether it was drugs or other harmful offerings. 

I do not want this to end with tradgedy.  Rick had one son, Tim.  Tim is doing well in IT with Enterprise Rental here in St. Louis, and has one daughter which Rick did get to meet.  Rick's Dad, Rolland, passed at the age of 101 in'09 and for three years prior, was the oldest living Major League ball player, having played for the Browns in 1930, 31, and 33.  Rick's cousin is Greg Maracek formally with KFNS and gave a great eulogy.  If you ever watch the cable TV series or movies "Jackass", just remember that Rick was way ahead of his time!!  Take care Buddy!!  Love you forever!!    DD

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