Richard Rickus, age 77, was welcomed to his heavenly home on Sept. 25, 2015. He was a graduate of Valparaiso University, earning a degree in mechanical engineering. His first job was in the open hearth at a steel mill in South Chicago. From there he worked for 10 years in design and as a manager at Allis Chalmers plant in Harvey, Illinois, before going to Ford Motor Co., Tractor Division, in Michigan, where he worked in advanced engine design. The company sent Richard and his entire family to California for a 10-month program with the Sloan Group, where he received a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.
After returning to Michigan, he continued to work at Ford Tractor, but all the while felt the call to prepare for the ministry in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. He followed that call by entering the seminary in St. Louis, Missouri, where he spent three years in class work and one year on vicarage assignment to a church in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. In 2003 he formally retired from the ministry and he and his wife, Emily, built a house on their 5-acre property on a lake in northwest Wisconsin. They became members of a small church in Cable, Wisconsin, which had just become vacant. The elders asked Richard to serve their church on a part-time basis, which he did for the next three years, before moving to Columbus, Indiana.
He was active in his church and community where he became a member of St. Paul Lutheran Church, spearheading the committee to pay off the indebtedness of the new church building. He was also on the Evangelism Committee and a committee at Trinity Lutheran High School. He had served as president of Broadmoor Homeowner’s Association since its inception in 2008.
Born on January 12, 1938, in South Gate, California, Mr. Rickus was the son of the late Melbourne Lawrence and Ruth Hildegarde Reidenbach Rickus.
He married Emily Louise Andrews on September 4, 1960. She survives in Columbus.
Richard is survived by his wife and five sons, Stephen (Jennifer) of North Carolina, and grandsons, Evan and Kyle of North Carolina, Andrew (Mary) of Michigan, Robert Harlow of San Francisco, Sean Harlow, a missionary in Taiwan and the Philippines, and Philip of Portland, Oregon; a brother, Robert Rickus, of New York; and a sister, Ruth Lindeman, of South Bend, Indiana.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Melbourne and Ruth of South Bend.
The funeral will be at 11:30 a.m. Friday, conducted by Pastor Bauman of St. Paul and guest pastor, Rev. Robert Rickus, brother, of Tonowanda, New York, at St. Paul Lutheran Church-Clifty, 6045 East State Street, Columbus. Visitation will be at the church two hours prior to the service. Interment will be up the hill at the church cemetery after the service.
Memorials can be made to “Making Mission Possible” (MMP).
Online condolences and special memories may be shared with the Rickus family at barkesweaverglick.com.