RICHARD "RICH" RUTHERFORD
October 5, 1940 March 20, 2020
Richard (Rich) Rutherford, MSGT, USAF, Retired, passed away peacefully on March 20, 2020 with his family by his side.
Richard was born in Decatur, Ill. on October 15, 1940 to Virgil and Irene (Yoder) Rutherford. Growing up on a farm in Bethany, Ill. with his two sisters, Ann and Jeanie, Richard developed skills that would lead to a 20-year career in the Air Force, a master carpenter at Enercon, and superior craftsman at home. While in the Air Force, Rich served as a Medical Laboratory Specialist in hospitals in Ohio, Viet Nam, Washington D.C., Florida, Colorado, and New Mexico. During his time in Florida, he provided medical support to NASA astronauts for the Apollo 16 and 17, Skylab 1, 2, and 3 missions, as well as the Apollo-Soyuz test project. Upon completion of his service in Florida, Richard was transferred to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs in 1977 where he enjoyed providing medical support for future Air Force Officers. Richard retired from the Air Force in 1983. After retiring from the Air Force, Richard pursued a second 20-year career working for Enercon, creating custom bay windows that can be seen in houses all around Colorado Springs. At home he was the consummate craftsman and enjoyed participating in the Rocky Mountain Tool Collectors association.
Richard is survived by his wife of 56 years, Gale and their two children, Rebecca (Dale) Gassman and Robert (Courtney) Rutherford, two grandsons, Hayden and Alex Rutherford, a sister Jeannie (Bill) Walters, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his Parents, Virgil and Irene, and sister, Ann (Rutherford) Hagen.
Richard was a quiet, gentle soul well liked by all who knew him. He will be deeply missed. Services at First Presbyterian Church and The Pikes Peak National Cemetery are pending. In lieu of flowers, please consider contributing to UC Children's Hospital in Colorado Springs in his honor.