Richard Warren Stevens, 69, passed away on November 19, 2021 in the arms of his daughter and surrounded by the love of his family. He battled with many health conditions later in his life, but showed his indelible courage in facing every challenge with humor and a smile.
Rich was born in Flint, Michigan on December 21, 1951 to Pauline and Donald Stevens. He grew up as the younger brother of sisters, Sharon, Mary Lou, and Donna, and older brother to half siblings, Jim and Mike.
In later years, Rich moved to Oklahoma to live with his grandparents, Chloe & David “Bud” Spradley. It was here that he discovered the deeper meaning of family and faith that he carried throughout his life. At 18, Rich was one of the many brave young men drafted into the Vietnam war. He proudly served in the 1st Aviation Brigade for two tours before coming back to continue serving at Fort Hood. Once stationed there, Rich immediately knew he had found a (warmer) place to call home in Texas.
While stationed in Fort Hood, Rich and his military friends decided to take a trip to Austin to enjoy a scuba diving park called Windy Point Park. It was here that he met his future wife and mother to his children. Through their union, they had three wonderful children: Kristen Andrews, Jana Red, and Forrest Warren. Although the marriage did not last, Rich continued to be fully devoted to his children through coaching his daughter’s soccer team, instilling a love of Longhorn sports, attending and cheering on his children’s school productions, passing on family recipes, and continuously showing them the values of family.
Rich devoted his life, not only his family, but to helping those in need. While employed at IBM, he developed a Learning Center for Disabilities that helped to train and employ people with learning disabilities. He taught himself American Sign Language to further assist deaf employees and was presented an award by the City of Austin for his hard work in building and expanding the state-of-the-art program. After leaving IBM, Rich continued to serve his community as a proud volunteer for the Georgetown and Pflugerville police departments, CASA, as well as many other organizations.
Although Rich was the first to help a neighbor or friend, his true love and passion was being a dad and grandpa. He was well-known for his all encompassing warm hugs, infectious laughter, jokes and pranks, and wisdom. His legacy will be carried on through his daughter Jana, son-in-law Kerry, and their children Jordan and Alexis; daughter Kristen and her children Adelyn, Avery, Owen, and Brynna; son Forrest and his children Evelyn and Amelia; and four bonus children - Sterling and his wife Yujeong, Ian, and Helen. He will be missed by his surviving family, sisters Mary “Lou Lou” and Donna, brothers Mike and Jim, as well as many nieces and nephews. His family is comforted in knowing that he was greeted with open arms by many angels, including his mother, Pauline, sister Sharon, and best friend Michelle.
Rich requested that he not have a formal funeral service. His family will plan a Celebration of Life service at a later date to gather friends and family to honor his memory with stories, laughter, and love. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you honor Rich’s request that donations be made to The SAFE Alliance, a center and advocacy group to help stop domestic violence.
Dad, Grandpa (Beba), Rich, Richie, no matter what name you knew him by, he will be greatly missed by all.
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