Reflections on Uncle Rick

An excerpt from The Wit and Wisdom of Rick DuFour and How He Stood Up To Cancer
Author: Jessica Christie


Describing Uncle Rick in one word or identifying a single favorite memory with him is a challenge! I have been blessed to have him involved in my life since I was a little girl. However, fierce competitor comes to mind. Some of my fondest memories of Uncle Rick are from our family reunions. Rick and his siblings loved a good competition. My parents would set up cones in the yard for wheel barrel races. One person would have to sit in the wheel barrel and direct their blindfolded driver around the cones all while racing another couple. I just remember there being lots of hysterical laughing. Of course the competition would continue indoors as well. We had an island in our kitchen that Rick and his siblings would use to have sit up contests, and then they would leg wrestle. I think the most defining moment of Uncle Rick’s desire to win was during a game of laser tag. As we were all in the “prep” room of the facility Uncle Rick started to take the laces out of his shoes. I asked him why and he told me they would glow in the black light. At that point Uncle Bill took his white shirt off and another family member took their white socks off. I quickly realized kid or not, Rick (or any DuFour for that matter) wasn’t going to go easy on you. Game on!

Our family was blessed to have my grandpa, Bill DuFour, as our patriarch for many years. Grandpa instilled the importance of family in all of us. He always had a way of making us feel that everything was going to be okay when we were down on our luck. Grandpa had a positive outlook on everything. He always seemed to see both sides of a situation and discuss them rationally with you. When he passed Uncle Rick slid right into his position as the new patriarch of our family. He had huge shoes to fill. Rick took on this role without hesitation, and he made it his goal to ensure that our family stayed connected even though we are spread across the United States. Rick, with the support of Becky, has continued to make us feel like everything is going to be okay when we have been down on our luck. I have seen and heard my grandpa in Rick many times as a young adult. Uncle Rick has stepped in as father figure when myself and siblings needed it most. He has seen us at our best and at our worst. At our worst, he showed unconditional love and respect. There is no doubt that Rick has been a very successful man. He has determination like no other person I know. He has so much to be proud of. In my eyes his greatest accomplishment is his family, and the unconditional love and respect he continues to instill in us for each other.


This story is one of many tributes to Rick DuFour included in the charitable book project, The Wit and Wisdom of Rick DuFour. To learn more about the project and purchase a physical or digital copy of the book, click the button below.