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Published in Monadnock Ledger-Transcript on December 21, 2021
Peterborough NH — The Original Old Man: On December 12, 2021, Richard Fredericks, Rick, finished his physical journey after succumbing to four years with ALS. Rick passed peacefully in the arms of his wife Allison, and supported by his family and friends. Rick’s guiding values were independence, compassion, doggedness, optimism, and reverence. His physical loves were mountain-biking, hiking, paddling and camping. Nothing was more important, however, than the love of his friends and family. Every individual that was in Rick’s life felt important, understood, and accepted.
Rick’s intense love of the outdoors and his doggedness made him a formidable foe when competing in triathlons, trail running, and mountain bike races – including winning his class at the celebrated Vermont 50. He was persistent and never gave up. Less competitive activities included backpacking the Grand Canyon to enjoy cocktail hour on the edge of a 600′ drop. His intent was to always make the best of life. He navigated a solo canoe down some of the most remote whitewater rivers in the west and carried a canoe many a mile between the placid waters of the Adirondacks. Anyone lucky enough to travel with him during these adventures was treated to hilarious humor, an always positive attitude, and the reassurance that they would be looked after.
Rick was an accomplished craftsman of timber frame barns, acquiring the tools and learning the trade when his day job ended in the early evening. He expertly carved mortise and tenon joints, measured and assembled lap joints, and raised multi-ton frames with a legion of friends and family assembled in a way that would make Huck Finn proud.
Rick’s career was a winding road that began in his youth manufacturing pencils and delivering beer across the southwest – experiences he continued to reference as necessary building blocks in his growth as a professional. He quickly found his calling in moving commercial and educational organizations forward through nurturing and coaching the best attributes of the individuals that made up the whole. His impact on institutions such as Stanford University and New York University has left a lasting legacy. His development of the individuals from the shop floor to the leadership suite of NEBS continues to pay dividends at Deluxe and companies to which many have moved.
Ricks grandchildren, Wyatt, Maddie and, Peyton, Phoebe and Caleb, will always remember the respect he showed each of them. Rick treated them as he did everyone else in his life and they, too, felt important, understood, and respected. His children, Lyndsay and Nolan, benefited from the amazing support and advocacy their father always provided. From creating ConVal High School’s lacrosse program so Nolan and his friends had a challenging outlet outside of high school academics, to instilling his love of the outdoors in Lyndsay so she could go on to teach the next generation how nourishing nature can be for the soul. Rick’s adventures with his son Ethan included kayaking and canoeing the remote waters of Maine, riding the slopes of Crotched Mountain, and always being available to calibrate the decisions that have brought Ethan from a boy to a strong young man.
The love of Rick’s life was Allison. They had a connection that few get to experience. They were each other’s greatest pals.
A memorial will occur in the new year – dates and times will be posted in the paper and on Facebook. In the meantime, if you wish, donations can be made to Compassionate Care ALS, PO Box 1052, West Falmouth, MA, 02574 or online at CCALS.org