Steve Everett Ritchie peacefully passed away surrounded by close friends and family on April 8, 2021, after a valiant 3-year battle against pancreatic cancer. He passed two days shy of his 73rd birthday.
Steve, affectionately known as "Ritch Man," was born in Everett, Washington on April 10, 1948 to parents Eugene "Jiggs" Ritchie and Betty Ryan Beilfus. The son of a wanderer, Steve spent his childhood across much of the western United States, with a particular love of his time living on Maui with his father.
A proud graduate of Everett High School (class of 1966), Steve was a standout athlete—particularly in the sports of baseball and basketball. The Ritch Man played ball for the Everett Merchants and has fond memories of recreational softball with his buddies on Larry's Cabinets, Peppers and Pilchuck Tavern. He also played ball alongside his studies at Seattle U. Despite his Northwest roots, Steve was an avid Yankees fan.
Steve's love of sports extended well beyond playing. He volunteered numerous hours as the voice of Everett High football for 25 years. He was most passionate about developing young talent in the local community as a coach for North Everett Little League. He changed the lives of countless youth in this capacity and also served as his daughter's softball coach for many years, alongside close friend Greg Huggins. Steve also coached many of his son's baseball and basketball teams. He couldn't have been prouder of his kids.
Steve was a career longshoreman and proud member of the ILWU Local 32. He worked the docks up until his cancer diagnosis. He also served in the United States Army and was a proud member of Elks Lodge 479.
Steve is preceded in death by his parents, Jiggs and Betty, his sister Patty, beloved step-mother Juanita and father-in-law Jack Heath. He is survived by his wife, Debra, and children Elizabeth, Stephen, Julia and Mya. He also leaves behind his niece and nephew, Meg and John Heath, with whom he was very close. While there are countless people to thank, the Ritchie family offers its gratitude to their extended family (Susan, Jeri, Rick and Nana), and extends special thanks to Greg Huggins, Lisa Heath, Terry Smith and John Robinett. The family also thanks Nurse Barb and the team at Continuum Hospice Care.
Per Steve's wishes, a living wake occurred in his honor at the time of his 70th birthday. The family will also hold an outdoor summertime reception in Steve's honor. Invitations and details to follow at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Everett Little League, Everett High Blue and Gold, or any other charity of your choice.April 10, 1948 - April 8, 2021