Richard Melnicoe
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February 22, 2018 Surrounded by family and dearest friends, Rick lost his battle with lung cancer on February 22nd. Born in Berkeley and raised in Sacramento, Rick was a naturalist from childhood. He attended Encina High School and CSUS where he obtained degrees in Biology. He loved nature and the outdoors and spent many hours throughout his life exploring flora and fauna around the world. Rick was a star in cross country and track at Encina HS and enjoyed running throughout his life including the Boston Marathon in 1985. An avid bird watcher, Rick loved sharing his knowledge and after retiring as Director of the Western IPM Center at UC Davis, he became a docent at the Yolo Basin Foundation where he taught pond study for the Discover the Flyway program teaching children K-8th about ecosystems. Rick also led tours of the Davis Wetlands and Yolo Basin Wildlife area. Rick was a brewer of beer, nature photographer, gardener, voracious reader and a good friend to all. He was always willing to lend a hand or share information with friends, neighbors and colleagues. The outpouring of love and support for Rick during his final weeks was a testament to his legacy. Rick is survived by his wife of nearly 38 years, Oleta, son Eric and brothers Mark (Debbie) and John (Marilyn) Melnicoe, Cheryl Magnus and nieces and nephews who he dearly loved. He was preceded in death by his parents William Melnicoe and Jean Shirley. The family wishes to thank the nurses and staff of the UCD Medical Center, Davis Tower, 14th floor for their compassion and support. If desired, donations may be made to the UCD Health System, Thoracic Oncology Research Fund(HORJ401/Riess), 4900 Broadway, Suite 1150, Sacramento, CA 95820 or the YBF Discover the Flyway, PO Box 943, Davis, CA 95617. A celebration of life will be held in June.

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Published in The Sacramento Bee from Mar. 2 to Mar. 4, 2018.
Memories & Condolences
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8 entries
April 9, 2018
I am saddened to hear of Rick's passing. I have good memories of him from the days we were working at CDFA in the pesticides unit. He was a friendly, funny guy, an excellent athlete, and well versed on a variety of subjects. May his family and friends be comforted by all the wonderful memories.
Fred Bundock
April 8, 2018
I am so sad for this loss. Rick was my childhood best friend and neighbor for those grammar school and jr high school and high school years. I remember when he wanted to go out for track and we had a race. I beat him that first race but never again. He has always held a soft spot in my heart and taught me the love for animals and snakes and small creatures. I regret that we did not continue to be friends through life. I would have loved to meet his family and keep in touch with Mark and John. To His family, I am so sorry for your loss.
Nancy Kesterson Cervantes
March 5, 2018
Living in AZ I had no idea Rick was fighting this disease. He was so full of life and a pleasure to be around. I used to run and saw him running at one of our mutual meetings. I thought it may be fun to run with him. Then we talked times and that idea went out the window. Such a great guy full of life and always a pleasure to talk with and learn from. May God's blessings be on his family during this time of loss.
Jack Peterson
March 5, 2018
I always enjoyed our conversations before birding. Rick was a wonderful friend and person, I miss him already! I will forever remember him fondly. :_(
Laurie Langham
March 3, 2018
During our friendship from college to retirement, I learned two difficult things to say in life are 'hello' for the first time and 'goodbye' for the last; and so it was with this kind and decent person because the human race really needs more good people like Rick.
Whether we were discussing the nuances of different types of beer or wine, or tramping through beautiful landscapes together while botanizing and birding, he certainly added to the joy and knowledge of life. He helped us live. A friend is what the heart and soul often need, and Rick was that special person for many of us. How fortunate and poignant it was to witness the overwhelming amount of support from family and friends during his life; indeed, it was a true testimony to the depth and worth of a very decent man.
Thank you Rick for the happiness and privilege of your precious and rewarding friendship.
Tom Hall
March 2, 2018
A wonderful box of memories just flew open when I found out about R's passing. Such a good person.
My sympathies to his family and loved-ones.
He will be remembered.
Jacqueline Hardre
March 2, 2018
My deepest condolences. May the God who gives peace be with all of you. (Rom 5:33)
Briana Williams
March 2, 2018
I had not seen Rick since high school. I remember him as a track star, and beyond that, a kind and sincere friend, To his family, I am thinking of you and wishing you the best in your time of sadness. Rest in peace,dear Rick.You will never be forgotten.
Tanya Beard (Rowe)
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