Richard Reding,gay community activist, horticulturist, party giver, and friend, died June 22 while under treatment for leukemia. Rick will be remembered partly because he believed politics and causes were too important not to be fun. Rick served on the board of SEAMEC for many years. As a leader and board member for Tacky Tourist Clubs of America he made sure we had dates for the prom, places to bump in the night, and cruises that put the fairy in Seafair.
Gardens in Seattle and across the country bear Rick's stamp. A horticulture teacher for many years before starting his own business, Rick was able to transform a bare lot into a lush garden in months.
His parties were legendary because the friends he brought together were remarkably diverse. No solstice or equinox went uncelebrated.
Ricky was generous to a fault, stubborn, eclectic in his taste. He never quit on anything or anyone. Hypocrisy was the one thing he could not tolerate. He was fully and lovingly engaged with the natural world. He lived his values, and this community has been the beneficiary.
Ricky is survived by a wonderful family, including his mother Ella, brothers Ronald, John, Tim, and Ed, sisters Elaine, Theresa, Mary, and Janet, 22 nieces and nephews, 14 grand nieces and nephews, and a huge number of friends.
Rick's family and friends surrounded him with love in his final days, providing constant care for him and support for each other.
One friend who was far away quickly wrote on hearing of his passing "Rick had a great spirit during some very difficult times. We will miss him." And we will.