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Richard Hillyard Ford

Date of Birth

November 21, 1951

Date of Death

March 14, 2019

Richard Hillyard Ford —husband, father, brother, entrepreneur, outdoorsman, athlete, community volunteer — died March 14, 2019 at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. He was 67. The cause of death was complications due to surgery.
A much beloved resident of Santa Barbara, Richard was born November 21, 1951 and raised in St. Joseph, Mo. by his father F. L. “Boots” Ford, Jr., and mother Helen Hillyard Ford. Richard attended Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa, Summa Cum Laude in 1974 with a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Urban Geography. While there, he was captain of the swim team and named to the All-American Collegiate Swimming Team. He also entered the U.S. Olympic Swim team trials but was bested by soon-to-be multiple gold medalist Mark Spitz.
In 2003, Richard was inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame. He later attended University of Washington in Seattle, where he earned a master’s degree in Architecture & Urban Planning in 1977. In the early 1980s, Richard moved to Santa Barbara and started a 35-year career in the financial services industry and worked at Carpinteria-based PlanMember Services for 28 of those years.
Richard was also an active community volunteer. He served as a fundraising chairman for Santa Barbara County Channel City YMCA and Santa Barbara Dream Foundation. By 1988, Richard’s accomplishments garnered him a spot in the 60th edition of Who’s Who in California.
Richard is survived by his wife of 32 years, Kimberly; daughter, Natalie, of Santa Barbara, Calif.; son, Austin, of Truckee, Calif; and brothers, David, of Denver, Colo., and Frazer, of Sun Valley, Idaho. A private memorial service is being planned. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you donate blood or make a monetary donation to
Vitalant, 4213 State Street, SB, CA 93110.

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