Rick Reid passed away January 26, 2015, at the age of 74 from complications of Parkinson’s disease and heart problems with his wife, Mary, by his side. He was born April 22, 1940, in Corvallis, OR, to Curtis and Dorothy Reid. Rick’s mother and father met in New York. His dad was working on his Master’s Degree at New York University, and his mom was working in New York. Rick’s mom, Dorothy Stowell, was from East Hartford, CT; and his grandmother was from Ireland. Rick’s grandfather was a teacher, a traveling minister in the northwest, and then became a general contractor in Salem, OR. Rick’s dad, Curtis, received his Bachelor’s Degree from Willamette University, his Master’s Degree from NY University, and his Ph.D. from Oregon State University (OSU) and was a Professor at OSU. Rick always said he “grew up on a curb in Corvallis.” Rick was named after his beloved Uncle Dick (Richard Stowell).
Rick graduated from Corvallis High School in 1958 and received his Bachelor’s Degree (1962) and Master’s Degree (1965) in Mechanical Engineering from OSU. After college, he fulfilled his ROTC obligation with the Army (1962-1964), serving in Alaska during the big Alaska earthquake. After his discharge, he worked for Standard Oil in California from 1965 to 1966, when he was hired by CH2M HILL in Corvallis where he worked until he was transferred to Portland in 1982. He served as a Project Manager, Department Manager, and Mechanical Discipline Group Director.
Rick is survived by three children: Lynette, Jim, and Scott (Allison) from his previous marriage to Carolyn Edwards. Rick and Mary Lane Hess were married October 1984 and lived in Beaverton, OR, until 1998 when they moved to Sherwood, OR. Mary’s children Mark King (Lisa) and Melissa King Griggs (Paul) live in Georgia and were also considered by Rick as his family. Rick left seven grandchildren: Jackson (Lynette); Tanner and Colton (Scott); Andrew, Jacob, and Michaela (Mark); and Kaitlyn (Melissa). Mary’s grandchildren all considered him their “Grandpa Rick.” He is also survived by his sister, Judie Fletcher, of Cascade, ID.
In 1984, Industrial Design Corp. (IDC) was started by a core group including Rick from CH2M HILL. Rick was a Vice President, Chief Engineer, and Director of Operations. He also was Project Manager for large industrial projects such as Intel, IBM, Digital Equipment, ST Microelectronics, and several others. During his career, Rick traveled to Europe and Asia (Singapore) numerous times and formed life-long friendships throughout the U.S. and Europe. He was highly regarded by his profession and particularly by CH2M HILL. In 2004, Rick was inducted into the Oregon State University Engineering Hall of Fame. As a colleague noted: He was a mentor, guardian, friend, and was kind hearted to a fault; he was gentle, understanding, but firm. Rick retired early from CH2M HILL in December 2002.
Rick’s life-long love of Corvettes led him to serve as the NW Chairman of the National Corvettes Restorers Society, President of the national organization for 5 years, and a Board member of the Corvette Museum. His first Corvette was a 1956 Corvette Roadster. He restored several Corvettes: a 1960 Roadster, a 1965 Coupe, a 1991 ZR1, and a 1962 Roadster. In 2014, Rick and his neighbor, Gary DeBoer, completed a 1965 Cobra (Factory Five kit).
He enjoyed golf and competed in slow pitch softball until his Parkinson’s disease prevented him from participating in both sports. He faithfully followed OSU sports, particularly football. Rick was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in the early 1990s. He fought the disease for more than 24 years with grace, fortitude and patience, never complaining. The disease progressed to the point in early 2014 when he was restricted to a wheelchair, but he still maintained his humor and good nature.
In July 2014, Rick moved to Avamere in Sherwood, an assisted-living facility very close to home. It felt like being at home; and he was surrounded by new friends, both staff and residents. The family would like to express their thanks and gratitude to the Avamere staff for the outstanding compassionate care Rick received and to the residents for their friendship. The family would also like to thank all of Rick’s many friends and associates for their support over the years and at this time.