Richard William Naitoh(1994 – 2013)

Ricky Naitoh, treasured son of John Naitoh and Becky Zeiner, and beloved brother to Sarah, Emily and Steve, was taken from us prematurely on March 3, 2013. He was only 18 and succumbed after a long battle against depression.
Ricky was born in Middletown, CT, and was named after his mother's father. While he spent his early years in Middletown and Los Angeles, the majority of his life was spent in La Jolla, CA.
His most special childhood years were at Torrey Pines Elementary School; but through his life at Muirlands Middle School and at La Jolla High School, he built true friendships that gave him moments of true happiness and relief from his illness.
Ricky strived to be a writer and was attending Long Beach State University. He also was a poet whose potential will sadly never be realized. He loved his family and his friends. He also enjoyed hiking, camping with his family, photography, painting and reading. His spark was to create art. He was a gentle soul who looked after others he felt were less advantaged or needed attention. In high school he tutored underprivileged students.
His last message to all of us was, "I am sorry to everyone who cared for me. I wish you all the best. I am sorry. I love you. Be strong. Never give up." We believe that his wish was for all of us to carry on and make the world a kinder place. We believe the best way to pay tribute to his life is to be empathetic and loving to each other. He wanted us to reach out to those in need, to those who appear lonely, who are in pain or need a hand. Every day he would want us to prove that the world does not have to be cruel.
In his memory, we have to make choices to be sure that the gift of life is never extinguished prematurely again.
In his honor, there will be a Celebration of the Life of Richard William Naitoh on Saturday, March 23, 2013, from 11 AM to 2 PM at San Diego Botanic Gardens - Gazebo lawn (the garden grounds open at 9 AM), 230 Quail Gardens Dr., Encinitas, CA 92024. Lunch will be served. Admission to the gardens is free for attendees.
Please RSVP to: [email protected] if you can so we can coordinate catering.
In lieu of gifts or flowers, we request that donations be made either to the English Department at CSU - Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90840, or to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, 120 Wall Street, 29th Floor, New York, NY 10005. You can also visit the website,, and leave messages for his friends and family.
Published in La Jolla Light from Mar. 14 to Mar. 21, 2013