Richard Ripple, 84 passed away peacefully on April 10 at the Brightondale Assisted Living Center in New Brighton, MN. He is survived by his daughter Catherine, and his son Steven. His wife, Camille preceded him in death. He attended South Division High in Milwaukee and worked for WI Bell and ATT for many years in Milwaukee and River Falls, WI. He was an active member of his local CWA union and took a leadership role for a time.
Richard loved animals. He had dogs for his whole life, some he hunted with, some not, and all were family companions. He cared for other people’s dogs just as much as his, and was often looking after them while their owners were out of town.
He also loved the outdoors. He spent many summers fishing, when living in Milwaukee, often on weekends at Lake Emily, an later in the Hayward area on Beaver Lake with his beloved wife, Camille. He was also an avid deer, bird, and small game hunter, and pursued this passion throughout his life. He was equally concerned about wildlife conservation as well, and maintained many bird feeders, and helped improve the wildlife habitat around the family home by transforming it from alfalfa fields to a diverse forest.
Always active, Richard was on the football team in high school as a running back. Later he participated in an adult softball league for years. He taught his children to swim, ice skate, and love the outdoors as he did. Later in life he took up mountain and road biking and participated in many races. His favorite, the Firehouse 50, he finished more then 20 times eventually retiring at 74. One of his most notable indoor activities was only seen at weddings, birthday bashes, or other parties – dancing. He could out-dance nearly anyone on the floor no matter their age. He knew the steps of nearly every dance, but could improvise quite impressively as well.
Richard was not outdoors all the time, another of his passions was reading spy and thriller novels and non-fiction history books. He also loved films, of nearly every genre, though some of his favorites were often adventure films like “The Guns of Navarone” or spy thrillers like “The Hunt for Red October” as well as the numerous Bond films.
He bought the family house partly finished, and did much of the finishing work himself. He enjoyed this type of work throughout his life and helped out with many remodeling projects for friends and family. He was someone you could ask about a mechanical problem and get the answer, as well as an offer to assist with getting it fixed.
And boy could he tell stories. Sometime he would bring a whole room to laughter. He also had a playful streak and could play hide and seek, tag, or other games that would amuse the child in all of us. And we also remember some of those hide and seek games where he would jump out and scare us – but soon this too turned to laughter and us all wanting more.
A memorial service was held at the Bakken-Young Funeral Home, 805 East Division Street, River Falls, WI on Saturday, April 20, 2019 at 11 am with visitation starting at 10 am. We request that donations be made to the Salvation Army or the Lewy Body Dementia Association in lieu of flowers. Arrangements are with Bakken-Young Funeral & Cremation Services.