On June 16, 2018, our beloved Richard “Rick” Patrick McLaughlin passed through this life and onto his next journey after a three-year battle with sarcoma cancer. Rick was born on July 24, 1966 in San Jose, California and was raised in Thousand Oaks, California where he attended Aspen Elementary, Redwood Intermediate and Thousand Oaks High School. He graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 1989 and took his first accounting job in southern California soon after that. Rick later moved to northern California to begin his career in the Business Office at The Branson School in Ross, California. He went on to receive his Masters of Business Administration at Dominican University, and would stay at Branson for the next 25 years.
In April 2001, Rick married the love of his life Michelle Holman. They made their home in Novato, California where they raised their two beautiful daughters Jordan and Reese.
Rick was selfless, kind and sincere. His smile, hug and handshake, and the pure joy in his eyes, had a lasting impact on all those who met him. Rick was compassionate and caring—and those qualities extended to even the smallest of creatures. It was not unlike Rick to catch spiders, flies and ants inside the house only to release them safely outside.
Rick had a competitive spirit as well. He loved family poker games, playing doubles paddle tennis with his brothers, and watching the Dodgers, Lakers and The Irish. His music taste ranged from Bruce Springsteen, Elton John and Billy Joel, to Nirvana and Radiohead.
Rick was always a positive presence at his daughters’ games, encouraging and cheering on all the players, even those on the opposing team. Respect and empathy for all was ingrained in his very being. One of Rick’s greatest qualities was his patience and listening skills. Though he was not confrontational, he was intellectual and well-informed. Only if he was asked, he would share his opinions and he held some strong convictions about life, religion and politics.
Rick was the opposite of arrogant, yet all who knew him recognized he was the favorite child, the favorite sibling, the favorite uncle, and a gift to us all. When we all struggled to understand “why him,” Rick simply stated “why not me.” He had a quick wit that he often used on his younger brother. We will all miss the banter. Rick was the heart and lifeblood of our family. While his passing feels like an unbearable loss, we can take solace in knowing that his goodness will live on through those of us who were blessed to have crossed his path as we hear his voice in our heads to always “be nice.”
Rick is survived by his wife Michelle, daughters Jordan and Reese, his parents Tom and Audrey McLaughlin, his siblings Keith and his wife Liz, John and his wife Jane, Mike and his wife Ellen, Mark and his wife Gabriela, Jean and her husband Rick, Lee and her husband Ted, Robert and his wife Colleen, his mother-in-law Mary Ann, sister-in-law Marie, and brother-in-law Mark, and many nieces and nephews.