|Rick and Kathy Barton|
|Love You Rick Barton - Rest in Peace|
Richard Gilbert Barton Jr. (1952-2018)
Richard Gilbert Barton Jr., 65, passed away February 9, 2018 at his winter home in Gilbert, AZ.
Rick and the love of his life Kathleen Barton married in Salt Lake City, UT on June 10, 1972 and were later sealed in the Salt Lake Temple. He leaves behind 5 children: Dr. Brandon, Tyler (Rochelle), Megan, Josh (Dianna) and Camille Hugill (Thomas) as well as 11 grandchildren who he enjoyed more than anything in his life. His selfless dedication to supporting his posterity both financially and spiritually was fathomless as he split time between his family in both Arizona and San Diego.
Rick was most happy working on his many home improvement projects having built his family's Salt Lake City home himself and continued later in life designing innovative creations to improve the life of his friends and family. We will all miss learning from the Master RGB.
Born May 22, 1952 in Salt Lake City, UT to Richard Gilbert Barton Sr. and Marjorie Yvonne Barton. Preceded in death by his brother James (1951), Rick is survived by his 7 siblings: Diana Webb (Randy), Dave (Janice), Dr. Jeff (Debbie), Laurie Pinegar (Joseph), Holly Hurst (Bruce), Chris (Earlene), Becca Adams (Bob) as well as sister-in-law Joyce Muhlestein (Ray) and brother-in-law Dr. Gordon V. White.
A man of Rick's influence and vitality is not often encountered. He continued his high school athletic successes as a team captain all-state football player at the University of Utah on the Utes football team. Rick's work ethic was something to marvel at as he would later build his own business in 1979, successfully operating it for 19 years before selling it in 1997. His life's journey would take him to the beaches of San Diego where he enjoyed many years with his family. He continued there professionally as a foregone expert in his industry, fittingly working right up to his very last day of life.
Rick mentored countless professional colleagues, silently supported innumerable friends and family emotionally and financially, engaged vividly with everyone in his path and left a memorable impression everywhere with his unique character.
Funeral services will be held Friday, February 16 at 10:00 a.m. at the LDS Church Freestone Park Ward, 230 N Val Vista Drive, Gilbert AZ, 85234. Friends are welcome to attend a viewing Thursday, February 15 at Bunker Family Funeral Home, 33 N Centennial Way, Mesa, AZ 85201 from 6-8 p.m. and Friday at the church from 9:00 to 9:45 a.m. prior to the services. Interment will be at San Tan Memorial Gardens at Schnepf Farms following the morning service.
Bunker Family Funerals & Cremation- Garden Chapel
33 North Centennial Way Mesa, AZ 85201
Published in Salt Lake Tribune on Feb. 15, 2018
|Notes from Diana Webb Outlining Funeral|
We were so blessed to be in Long Beach when we heard the news about Rick. It is only a six-hour drive to Phoenix, and the weather was great! We stayed with my sister Holly in Gilbert along with an incredible number of others. She had people on every bed and every couch… It was actually a good idea to be smashed all in together. Becca and Holly and their spouses handled the flowers and other details, and Kathy, Rick’s wife, worked with her kids to put together an obituary and the funeral program. Each of her sons spoke – Brandon, Tyler, and Josh, and so did her daughter Megan, and two of my brothers – Chris and Dave. Cami just wanted to sit by her mom and hold her hand during the service. Becca told me she has been sleeping with her mom during these first few hard days. Two of Rick’s good friends also participated, Sam Bracken, and Bruce Edwards, the father of his daughter-in-law. Rochelle (daughter-in-law) sang, accompanied by Brandon, his son, on the viola and it was very moving.
Megan, the oldest daughter, paid a tender tribute to her father. She and Jill were the same age.
Tyler was the first brother to speak.. He said that he already had his talk prepared, but he heard a voice say, “Talk to the grandchildren…” So, he decided to rewrite his talk for the grandchildren. He showed different pictures of him as a sibling, as a football player, as a groom, and as a grandpa. It was powerful!
Josh, the third son spoke next. He talked about what a great support his father had been to him during his life. Josh played basketball at Palomar Junior College. He was a walk-on after his mission, but he made the team. Travis Browne was a sophomore. The other players were standoffish to this “new guy on the team” - all but Travis. This was spring of 2001. They were the only ones lived on the coast, and they became friends. Travis was in and out of his mother’s house, and he went back and forth, wondering whether or not he wanted to live with his mom. He had lost his father at an early age. He hung out at Josh’s house a lot, and he slept on their couch. Rick was a father figure. He and Josh hung out together for a few years. He was attracted to the family culture of the Church. He was really, really, ready. One day he asked if he could take the missionary discussions. He was taught by the missionaries in their home during June of 2002. He asked Rick to baptize him. He got married in the temple to his first wife. They had a couple of kids, but they separated after a time. They now live in Riverside.
He started doing martial arts at 27, although he had had no formal training. He needed to make a 100% change in his lifestyle in order to do this. He had to get to and from the training sessions and to pick up his kids, but he didn’t have a car at that time. Rick let him drive his red truck back and forth to the training sessions, and to pick up his children. Travis is now an American mixed martial artist who competes as a heavyweight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Rick used to travel around the country to see Travis fight. He never missed a one. He recently married Ronda Rousey in Hawaii and flew Josh out to the ceremony. She is an American professional wrestler, actress, and former mixed martial artist. (I had no idea who these people are in Ultimate Fighting, but I am pretty out of it on the things that happen in the world today. If it is not at least 2,000 years old, I know very little about it.) Erin told me that Ronda Rousey was an answer on Jeopardy last week. I guess that’s how you know you are “really famous.” I got up the courage to ask her if I could take my picture with her, since my daughter would love it. She was very sweet about it. They were both there at the wedding to honor Rick, and support Josh. Travis was very tender with Rick’s inconsolable granddaughter who was really having a hard time. He held her on his lap almost the whole time. If I had to choose one word to describe Ronda Rousey, it would be SWEET. She probably does not want her fans to heat that! It is hard to believe she is a world champion fighter.
When his wife asked, “What do you want to for your birthday (which is in July)?” Travis said, “Thanksgiving at the Barton house.” I see what he means! We loved spending last Thanksgiving with the Rick Bartons.
Brandon, the oldest son, and a neurologist living in Chicago, spoke about what happened to his father physiologically. He said that he had enough notice to seat himself on the floor gradually so as not to harm his new hip. He said that there was no trauma. Rick was probably very surprised to see the bright light!
Chris and Dave both gave awesome talks. Chris talked about what a positive influence Rick had been in his life. He talked straight with him, and he didn’t mince words. He said, “He kept me from punching a lot of holes in the wall! He told me to give myself credit, and don’t sell myself short so much. He made me believe in myself.
Dave talked about the shenanigans he and Rick took part in as kids. Then he quoted something that my mom wrote. I really lost it then. This was my life!
“The hardships and heartaches have made me a better person. I try daily to learn what the Lord would have me learn. You see, I'd rather become worthy to walk in his presence than be beautiful, socially prominent, or famous. I have often wondered if I would have reached the depth of commitment in any other way. Does it really matter what we suffer if we qualify to live with him? Pray for me; don't pray for my suffering to be less, but that I may endure to the end regardless of what is required.”
“One of my prayers is that my contribution to the eternal lives of those who serve me, family, friends, and fellow Church members, will be that the services they give me, in love, with faithful repetition, sometimes with impatience, will prove to be a part of their eternal growth.”
Sam Bracken paid a nice tribute to his lifelong friend. He told the story of catching Rick as he fell from a ladder while fixing the roof in his gazebo, and said, “He has spent the next 20 years catching me.” He said that Rick was the big brother he never had. He said he was there ready to help him whenever he needed wisdom, counsel, or just someone to listen. He loved him without judgment. I agree. Rick never judged.
The dedication of the grave was offered by Bruce Edwards, Rochelle’s father. (Rochelle is Tyler’s wife.) He is a gifted interior decorator, and he has provided beautiful décor in many of the Lord’s temples. Knowing this, I told him that I think of him every time I go to the temple. He said, “That’s not who you should be think of…”
We were all grieving in our own different ways. Many of us just sat with each other and shared memories and ate the treats that were constantly paraded before our eyes. In my book, chocolate is as good as liquor at drowning your sorrows. I found that blondies work well also. One of Holly’s friends brought over a plate of warm blondies and I proceeded to eat seven in a row. Others decided to get tattoos in Rick’s honor. The most important thing was that we were all TOGETHER in this. We all supported each other. When I heard about Rick, my first thought was about Kathy. How would she survive by herself? As I saw how her children rallied around her, my worries evaporated. She is in good hands. She has inner strength.
One of the highlights of the weekend was getting to visit with Kathy’s niece, Melanie Bills, who is the nurse in the Philadelphia mission. They are the same age. Her brother, Randy White, played football with Rick and told him about his beautiful “aunt.” After they met, he never looked at another girl. They were joined at the hip for the rest of their lives. Melanie and I used to work at Castleton’s in the Junior Department. We had tons of fun together… We would pick out our favorite outfits at full price and would be the first to find out when they went on clearance. We were extremely well-dressed in those days!! We had much to discuss as we sat together wearing our missionary tags! She and her husband only have a few weeks left in their mission. He was unable to come because he is the Vehicle Coordinator and it was Zone Conference time when all the cars need to be inspected. I love talking to people who have known me for over fifty years!
We all met at Holly and Bruce’s home after the funeral. We visited and bonded. Dave brought all the old Barton family home movies from the big pile of 8mm spools that mom had. Most of them were about us as kids, but there were a few of mom doing acrobatics in front of the 1246 E 2nd South home.