To the editor:
The Dalles School District and the community of The Dalles lost greatness with the recent passing of Richard J. Eddy. Having served as an educator, coach and mentor at various levels for the better part of three decades, Mr. Eddy had a profound impact on all of those who knew him. He had a direct and early hand in the development of many of the athletes that would make up the backbone of the 1992-94 Tri-Valley Conference Football Champions long before any of us saw the varsity level. He was the type of person that didn’t go around patting himself on the back for having helped a student or athlete, but rather he enjoyed the success of those he touched from afar.
Richard Eddy always had a kind word, a tip for improvement, or a sympathetic ear long after a student had left his classroom. He genuinely cared not only about his students, but all whom he would meet through his involvement in the community and school district alike. If you were his friend, you were his friend for life. As an educator and mentor to young people, he never used threats or a raised voice, but rather he treated his students and players like young adults, and would explain why good behavior, academic success and doing things the honorable way was paramount to success in life.
As a father, he doted upon his children Chelsea and Jaron. When his kids were small, you could bump into Mr. Eddy at an athletic event, or at any local establishment, and ask him how things were going and he would go on and on about how his kids were growing up so fast and how proud of them he was. He was a man’s man, but had the gentleness and kindness that is missing from so many influential figures in today’s education system. Richard J. Eddy was a true role model for young people. As both a former student and athlete of Mr. Eddy’s, I can safely say that I am not alone in the small army of administrators, fellow educators, students and athletes who are saddened by the news of his passing. I’m positive he had a very large influence on many of us who pursued education as a career. My sincere thoughts and prayers are with his entire family during this time of mourning, for we have lost a truly great gentleman.
William T. Brost