Richard was born in Port Angeles on October 9, 1927 and was the only child of Alfred Ruud and Ethel (Spurr) Ruud. Sadly, his mother passed away in a fire while he was still an infant. Neighbors on West 5th Street helped Alfred raise Richard until stepmother, Gertrude, became a part of their life in 1931. He attended schools in Port Angeles prior to serving in the Pacific with the Navy. After discharge from the service he met and married Marjorie Mae Forsberg in 1952 settling in Dry Creek where he built their home. Margie was a secretary for the Port Angeles School District working in the main office and then at Dry Creek School. They were proud members of the Dry Creek Grange. Margie preceded him in death in 1982 as well as their daughter Shiela in 1981.
Richard was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He was proud to be a Volunteer Firefighter and Fire Commissioner for Clallam County Fire District No. 2 for 65 years. He was proud of his Norwegian heritage and lived a rich and full life with kindness, generosity, loyalty and integrity to family and friends. He could be opinionated and stubborn; however, he offered up his intuitive wisdom lovingly and without malice. He will be greatly missed.
Richard began his working career at Rayonier Mill and then as a millwright and shareholder at PenPly until his retirement, where he made many friends and enjoyed the camaraderie of his coworkers.
He truly was a son of the Olympic Peninsula, growing up hiking and hunting the mountains, fishing in its streams and in the Strait of Juan De Fuca. This resulted in his lifelong love of seeing what was over the next mountain, camping, hunting and fishing. He enjoyed being outdoors and traveling with his family in an assortment of trailers, campers, motorhomes and 5th wheels. He rarely missed opening day of trout season on Lake Sutherland and enjoyed his south shore cabin.
After Margie's passing Richard met another school secretary, Sally Glass Ford. Sally was a ray of sunshine who brought light back into his world. Richard and Sally were married at Manresa Castle in Port Townsend in 1983 and combined households. Richard not only welcomed Sally into his life, but her children Mike, Diane, and Steve Ford. Holiday celebrations at the Ruud residence once again became a lively affair. Richard also embraced Sally's extended family and he loved their summer trips to Detroit, and the summer cottage at Harsens Island. He and Sally were active members of Saint Andrews Church where he enjoyed contributing his skills and energy as a volunteer. His love of square dancing with Margie continued with Sally. Richard loved his vegetable garden which he generously shared with friends and family.
As family scattered, Richard and Sally enjoyed traveling to see them from Alaska to New Jersey and points in between. They enjoyed traveling in their motorhome until 2013, when she began having health problems. Richard continued his travels for the annual family fishing trip, visiting friends and family, and attending the occasional family wedding.
Last December Richard moved to Sinclair Assisted Living in Sequim due to health issues. He passed away January 27th and was joined in passing by his wife, Sally, later the same day. His was a life truly well-lived. He is survived by his sons Neal (wife Aline Eiman) of Lynnwood, and Keith (wife Joan Mason) of Portland, and daughter Jill Dietrich (husband Tom) of Seattle. In addition to Mike, Diane, and Steve, he is also survived by nine grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.
Services will be scheduled by Drennan-Ford later this year due to COVID-19.
Published in Peninsula Daily News on Feb. 14, 2021.