Obituary of Richard Nicholas Hartman Jr
With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of Richard Hartman, affectionately known as Rick, who left us at the age of 75. Rick was a beloved husband, father, grandfather, and friend, leaving behind a legacy of love, resilience, and camaraderie that will forever be cherished.
Rick is survived by his wife, Kathy Hartman, and their children: Mari (Todd) Stevens, Bill (Bekah) Crispin, and Rob (Melanie) Hartman. He also leaves behind his adored grandchildren: Stephanie, Cole, Carson, Charlie, and Louis. Rick's siblings, Carol (Dan) Schwartz, Debi (Mark) Gaines, Rod (Pam) Hartman, Susan (Del) Peterson, and Patty (Jeff) Bestul, continue to cherish the memory of their brother.
Born in Chicago and raised in Laramie, Wyoming, Rick was the son of Dick and Betty Hartman. He inherited his mother's sociable nature, never meeting a stranger, and often initiated conversations with anyone sporting Wyoming attire or a Wyoming license plate, forming connections and friendships effortlessly.
In 1966, he graduated from Laramie High School as a state champion in wrestling, a sport that showcased his determination, a quality that would define him throughout his life.
After high school, Rick pursued education at the University of Wyoming before enlisting in the United States Marine Corps. His dedication and remarkable wrestling prowess led him to be selected for the Marine Corps wrestling team, taking him to Okinawa, Japan, where he represented his country with honor and distinction. Upon becoming an Airborne qualified Paratrooper, Rick was honorably discharged in 1971 and returned to Laramie.
He continued his education at the University of Wyoming and the University of Denver, focusing on restaurant management, which laid the foundation for a successful career. Rick's professional journey led him to the Village Inn Corporation, where his dedication and leadership earned him the admiration of many, with some referring to him as 'the best boss I ever had.'
In 1975, Rick married his beloved wife, Kathy. Together, they lived in various places, creating enduring memories. Kathy's attempts to influence Rick's wardrobe choices proved challenging, as he remained loyal to his Hawaiian shirts and his Wyoming and Marine gear. His signature look, with cargo shorts and an infectious smile, was known to bring joy wherever he went.
In retirement, Rick and Kathy embarked on adventures to Costa Rica, Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Vermont, and Massachusetts. The laughter, shared experiences, and the bonds that were strengthened during these trips will forever be cherished.
One of the greatest joys of Rick's life was his grandchildren. His boundless laughter and playfulness knew no bounds, and he had a unique ability to make children smile. His cargo shorts doubled as a treasure trove of fun, with balls and toys tucked away, adding to the laughter echoing through the rooms.
Rick was not just a beloved family member but an integral part of the Greeley community. He ran the Marine Toys for Tots program for a decade, volunteered countless hours for causes he believed in, and dedicated himself to the organization Jobs of Hope. His deep belief in God led him to "take it to the streets," walking the path of Jesus in real-time. In his final years, the enthusiasm and love he had for the people he worked with shone through in every conversation. He worked tirelessly to connect non-profit organizations, earning the endearing titles of "the unofficial mayor of Greeley" and an "urban missionary."
Though we mourn the loss of this remarkable man, we find solace in the memories we shared and the profound impact he had on our lives. Rick leaves behind a void that cannot be filled, but his spirit will live on in the hearts of all who had the privilege of knowing him.
Rick's legacy of love, laughter, and tireless devotion to others will continue to inspire us all.
In lieu of flowers, and to honor Rick’s generous spirit, please send donations to "Jobs of Hope," an organization that provides support to men coming out of incarceration and/or gangs, guiding them toward a life in Christ and hope. You can contribute via the link provided below.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Richard Hartman Jr, please visit Tribute Store