GUTHRIE, Richard Hamilton II
Richard Hamilton Guthrie II, husband to Niaomi J. Hamilton and father of four, died peacefully in his sleep after a two and a half year battle with cancer, early November 28, 2012. Rick was born in 1945 and raised in Beaconsfield, Montreal, along with four sisters. He first came west in 1960 to work a summer on a cattle ranch in Longview. Despite the culture shock of a 15 year old city-boy landing on a working ranch on branding day, his experience began a lifelong interest in the outdoors and a desire to have his own property and try his hand at developing the land. Rick went to RMC out of high school, majoring in economics and political science. It was then that he met and married Deirdre Kenny, with whom he had four children. They lived across Canada as a military family, moving from Chilliwack, BC to Dartmouth, Nova Scotia until, in 1979, Rick left the air force, a captain, and entered Dalhousie University Law School. He graduated at the top of his class, applied to law firms across Canada, and settled on Calgary as a place to article. Rick stayed in Calgary after the dissolution of his first marriage, eventually forming his own law firm. He grew to love the Rockies, fly fishing, ridge walking and exploring the high and wild places with his friends and his kids. He was joined in Calgary by each of his kids in turn as they looked for a place to stretch their own wings. He met and, in 2000, married Niaomi J. Hamilton. He would later describe this meeting as turning a corner in his life and seeing a world full of colour and music of which he was previously unaware. Together Niaomi and Rick continued to enjoy Alberta's wild places and began to dream once again about owning property of their own. They eventually made that dream reality, buying 80 acres of land near Alder Flats Alberta, and began the process of clearing and settling the land over the next several years. Rick was known to his friends and his kids as having a remarkable variety of interests and artistic talent. He was proficient at most art forms that required manual dexterity, from painting and stained glass, to carpentry, building fly rods, or wood turning. He was frequently found working on some new project and happiest when he was able to add to his already extraordinary wealth of knowledge about working tools. These abilities came to fruition during the clearing of his land, where he designed and built a single room cabin and loft, a full scale tee-pee, and ultimately designed his dream home. It was with horror that we, his family and friends, discovered two and a half years ago that Rick had stage 4 terminal cancer. It seemed unlikely that this beloved man, so full of life, was fighting a battle he would ultimately lose. He held on valiantly for the full term, ever hopeful, until he finally succumbed, dying peacefully next to his wife in the home he designed, only just finished. He was survived by his wife Niaomi, his children Rick, Shannon, Tara and Ryan, his mother Isobelle and sisters Barbara, Susan, Carolyn and Joanne as well as the many family and friends whose lives he touched. He will be sadly missed and fondly remembered. Funeral arrangements will be postponed until the spring of 2013. Donations can be sent to the Trout Unlimited Canada (Telephone 1-800-909-6040) on his behalf.
We love you Rick.
Published in Calgary Herald on Dec. 5, 2012.