Cover photo for Richard Dale Barrett's Obituary
1959 Richard 2022

Richard Dale Barrett

May 19, 1959 — July 10, 2022

Ocean Park

Richard Dale Barrett Richard Dale Barrett, 63, passed away suddenly at his Ocean Park, Washington, home in the early morning of Sunday, July 10, 2022.

Prior to moving to the Long Beach peninsula in 2017, he and his wife, Debra, had lived for 25 years in Maple Valley neighborhood of Arcadia, south of Seattle, where he built a koi pond and natural trails on their riverfront property.

Richard was born on March 19, 1959, in Montreal, Canada. At six months old, his parents, Jim and Lydia Barrett, moved their family to Redmond, WA, where Jim began a long career as a Boeing engineer. During his high school years, Richard was an avid downhill skier. He and his siblings spent a lot of time on the ski slopes of Snoqualmie pass or riding their dirt bikes. Richard also loved to go 4- wheeling with friends. Richard graduated from Redmond High School in 1977 and later graduated from the diesel mechanic program of Lake Washington Institute of Technology.

Richard’s mom was born in Ukraine, and owned The Kaleenka, a Russian restaurant in Seattle for more than 20 years, as well as operating a food truck at many of Seattle’s fairs and festivals. Richard worked the fair circuit for several years, making and selling piroshky and other Russian foods. Richard was a fabulous cook and in retirement also took up baking, often making fresh Challah bread, cheesy garlic monkey bread and orange rolls. Richard had a knack for fixing things, taking after his dad, who grew up on a farm. Richard worked as a Sears repair man, fixing everything from home appliances and lawn equipment to vacuums. He also worked for many years in the construction field, starting off as a framer with his brother, Steven, working in the Issaquah Highlands area. He then worked installing windows and doors for several Seattle-area companies, including Sears, where he was honored as their top installer in the country.

A work injury ended his ability to perform heavy work, and in his retirement he kept busy with a variety of hobbies, including beekeeping, birdwatching and “tinkering.” He was mechanically-inclined and could make or fix almost anything. Another of his amazing talents was growing indoor and outdoor plants. He experimented with growing tomatoes hydroponically and got more than 200 tomatoes on two plants. Richard also had a very creative, artistic side and for a short time created beautiful art glass pieces in his kiln. He loved music and played a mean blues harp. He enjoyed jamming with friends or playing some boogie woogie on the piano. As a kid, Richard played the balalaika in the Balalaika Orchestra of the Seattle Russian Community Center. Richard loved riding his motorcycle and amazed his friends with the ways he customized his bike. He shared some of his work on the Honda Fury Forum. Richard had a great sense of humor, enjoyed telling jokes and striking up conversations with strangers. He once crafted a pair of “Bigfoot Boots” he would occasionally wear in the dunes, hoping to amuse or perplex anyone seeing the huge prints. He was good-spirited, caring, generous and often helped others anonymously.

Richard is survived by his wife of 30 years, Debra, their cat, TomTom, and dog, Rusty. He is also survived by his brother George Barrett, of Kirkland, WA, sister Krista (Steve) Gordon of North Bend, WA, and Steven Barrett of Duvall, WA. His nephews include Akira Barrett, Ian Barrett, Kyle Barrett, Brayton Barrett and AJ Peluso; his nieces include Laura (Barrett) Wynn, Brittley Barrett and Brielle Barrett. Richard is also survived by numerous grand nephews and grand nieces. His parents preceded him in death, as did his favorite dog, Scruffy, and cat, Frango.

A private service is planned for August 27 in Maple Valley, WA.

Richard had a favorite saying whenever something unexpected happened- he'd say "It's never nothin' - It's always something!"




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