Richard E. Wallace, 57, left us too soon on June 29 after battling cancer for the last year.
Rich was born Oct. 23, 1961, in Billings to Montee and Donna Wallace. He was the baby brother of Mark, Cheryl, and Jean and then became a ‘big brother’ when Julie arrived 13 months later!
Rich was raised in Laurel, graduating in 1980. He participated in sports throughout his school years along with baseball and golf in the summer. His beautiful voice was a great addition to the Laurel Choir and his passion for reading made him the best trivia partner. His exquisite use of the English language made his short stories come alive.
Rich was a quiet man who enjoyed his solitude. He never married but treated his nephews and niece as his own, being a father figure for some. This love of children was extended to many of his friends' kids as well. Though quiet, once Rich decided that you were ‘ok,’ he would tease unmercifully with his dry, quick-witted sense of humor. He always enjoyed waiting for the moment when people ‘got it.’ Sadly, he’s still waiting on a few!
Rich joined Costco in 1992, earning his 25 year award in 2017. Costco was not just a job for Rich but also family… people to love, care for, and drive him crazy (employees and customers alike!). Walking into Costco with Rich this past year, I felt like I was with a ‘Rockstar.’ The love and support he received from his Costco family was unbelievable and so appreciated.
Looking to make a change in his life, Rich was welcomed into the Christ’s Church. He found a home there and was immersed in 2014. As his understanding of the Bible grew, so did his Faith. It was this Faith that got not only him through the last year but many of those around him as well.
This funny, generous man leaves behind his mother, Donna, sisters Jean Kerr of Laurel and Julie (Tom) Steen of Billings. Nephews Matt (Tina) Wallace and Kinley; Michael (Deborah) Wallace; Mitch (Lynea) Wallace and Alexandra; Montee (Jesi) Kerr and Yana; Eric Steen and niece Karlee Steen. His beloved rescue dogs: Shadow, Heiser, and Bogey. Special friends: Chris Wildman, Gary Meyers, and Brian Millar.
A celebration of Rich’s life will be held at 2:00 p.m. Friday, July 5, at Smith West Chapel in Billings. Please honor Rich by wearing your favorite Hawaiian shirt, tie-dyed t-shirt or the purple and gold of his beloved Laurel Locomotives and Minnesota Vikings.
To honor Rich’s memory, we request that you be kinder and a little more generous. Donate blood (he’s given gallons), pick up a piece of trash, rescue a dog, and fly your flag. Donations in Rich’s name can be made to Christ’s Church (14 N. 48th St. Billings 59106) or charity of your choice.
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