Rick Desmarais

08/10/1954 — 06/26/2007

From Richland, WA, US | Born in Yakima, Washington

Rick Desmarais

Rick passed away unexpectedly at his home in Richland on June 26, 2007, leaving behind a grieving family and many friends and coworkers stunned by his loss. Rick was born in Yakima, Washington on August 10, 1954, the third of six sons born to Jeanne and Andrew Desmarais, and grew up in Moxee, Harrah, and Toppenish.

Rick graduated from Toppenish HS in 1972 and attended college at the University of Rochester in New York before returning to the Yakima Valley to work in the hop and agricultural industries, and becoming a founding shareholder and brewmaster of Grant’s Brewery, the first microbrewery in the state of Washington.

He married his best friend and the love of his life, Ruth Massmann, in December of 1987. Ruth and Rick moved to the Seattle area to pursue his interest in software engineering, and at the time of his death, Rick was the Principal Software Engineer for LexisNexis Applied Discovery of Redmond, WA working remotely from his home in Richland. Daughter Andrea Marie was born in 1992, to whom he was a proud and doting father. True to his expertise with computers, Rick provided Andrea with her own personal computer before she was able to walk. The family enjoyed annual summer trips to Long Beach, WA with friends and family, fishing trips to Westport with friends, and family get-togethers during the holidays and special occasions, and most of all “the healing place” at Desert Aire.

Rick was kind and patient with an easy sense of humor, and took pride in the craftsmanship he put into every project and task he endeavoured. Anything worth doing was worth doing well, “for all intents and purposes.”

Rick was preceded in death by his parents, Jeanne and Andrew Desmarais, and numerous aunts and uncles in the Yakima Valley. He is survived by his wife Ruth Desmarais, daughter Andrea Desmarais, and Ruth’s parents Eleanor and Patrick Massmann all of Richland; brothers Bernie Desmarais and wife Faith of Olalla, WA, Dan Desmarais and Linda Romph of Soldotna, AK, Gerry Desmarais and wife Lynn of Renton, WA, John Desmarais and wife Karen Garber of Portland, OR, and Tom Desmarais and wife Laura of Mountain View, CA; brother-in-law Steve Massmann of Anchorage, AK; sister-in-law Mary Wilson of Kennewick; nieces Corinne and husband TJ, Robin and Michelle; nephews David, John, Kenny, Nick, Patrick, Joey, Andrew and Justinian; and beloved pets Joey, Cookie, and Leroy.

Funeral services will be held at 1:00 PM Monday, July 2, 2007 at Einan’s Funeral Home, Richland, Washington with burial to follow at Sunset Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Monday the 2nd from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM, also at the funeral home. The family invites you to a reception after the graveside at their home, 182 Oakland Street, Richland.

Rick’s sudden loss leaves a void in our family that cannot be replaced. His energy, drive, and friendship will be missed by all.

Memorial contributions may be made in Rick’s name to Columbia Basin Animal Rescue & Protection Agency, PO Box 6313, Kennewick, WA 99336.

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Rick Desmarais

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  • Ruth and Andrea,

    I am so sorry. Words can’t express the sadness I feel for you. Rick was a very special person, such a loss. I will never forget how you and Rick were there to help me through rough times. I will truly miss celebrating his birthdays in Longbeach eating crab. Then there was the time he found Hannah when she was lost, he was her hero. If only we could have had more time with Rick. I’m going to miss him.

    Doreen
    November 4, 2014
    Pasco, WA, US
  • My husband Dan and I are very sorry to hear about Rick’s passing. Dan grew up with Rick. Rick got Dan a job at the BreweryI guess since Dan was always visiting he might as will work! I had just started seeing Dan at that time,so I was also at the brewery alot. Rick was a great guy. It was amazing what he could do on the computer. Our thoughts and prayers our with you.

    Love, The Haldeman’s

    Ruth Haldeman
    November 4, 2014
    Bend, OR, US
  • I’m really sorry that we’ve lost Rick, and sorry that we’d lost touch with each other over these many years. I’ve always remembered sinking a number of pints with Rick at Grants, and doing quality control research at pubs around Seattle, and when he told me he was getting out of the beer biz to get into computers?. I really wish we’d kept in touch.

    Marty Corey
    November 4, 2014
    Anacortes, WA, US
  • I am still getting over the shock of all this. Rick was one of the most well rounded people I have known in life. So intelligent, so funny, so kind. I’ll always remember the early days at Grant’s, all the hard work and good times we had. Ruth, you were so good for Rick and he so proud of you and Andrea. Bless you both, and all your families, at this time, with strength and understanding. Dan & Lorrie

    Dan & Lorrie Boutillier
    November 4, 2014
    Yakima, WA, US
  • Dear Ruth,we are thinking of you and Andrea at this difficult time. You are in our hearts and our prayers. Your neighbors from the past in Issaquah, who remember you all fondly.

    Guillaume & Paula Noyers
    November 4, 2014
    Monroe, WA, US
  • Ruth & Andrea…Troop 1945 is thinking of you. You have good friends on both sides of the mountains! Our love to you both.

    Sue Wattier
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, WA, US
  • Rick was a pleasure to have known. We only had good times together and his leaving us is difficult for all that knew him.

    Dennis and Tracy Newland
    November 4, 2014
    Monroe, WA, US
  • I’m sorry to hear about your brother Bernie. My heartfelt sympathy to you and your family.

    Dan Purpur
    November 4, 2014
    Kenmore, WA, US
  • Ruthie –

    Words cannot begin to express our shock and sadness at the loss of Rick. He always had a smile when he walked through the door of Uncle Sams. We were blessed to have met and grown to know such a wonderful man.

    Our hearts go out to you…talking is great therapy. Let us know when you are ready to get out, and we would love to meet you.

    Dave & Jo Moore

    Dave & Joanne Jo Moore
    November 4, 2014
    Richland, WA, US
  • I worked with Rick at Prism, Pac and Interact. I was so, so sorry to hear that he’s gone from us. I enjoyed working with him – he had a great sense of humor. As one of the developers of the Spectra database his name is often brought up and remembered fondly when talking about the system – a system that is still in use today! I will miss ya RickyD!

    Karen McCombs
    November 4, 2014
    Everett, WA, US
  • Ruthie,

    We are so shocked and upset. We are so suddenly overwhelmed by our own mortality. We will sincerely miss Rick’s presence each evening at Uncle Sam’s Saloon. He was always a delight to visit with. He was always positive, never saying an unkind word about anyone. If conversations turned to criticizing someone, he would not participate. His smile, his laugh, his soft spoken stories and his wit will not be replaced. He was truly a nice guy. Don’t forget that Uncle Sam’s Saloon makes the best grilled cheese sandwiches in the Tri-Cities. We look forward to seeing you again.

    Ken & Rae Ann DeLong
    November 4, 2014
    Richland, WA, US
  • Hi Ruth, I was shocked and totally saddened to see Rick’s obituaries in the paper on Saturday. I worked under and with Rick for about a year in ADI a few years back and we kept contact loosely afterward. He was truly a great boss, a good friend and 1st class human being. What impressed me the most about Rick was his kindness, heart, hard work and sense of humor. I am proud to call him a friend. Good bye, RickD.

    Al Shum
    November 4, 2014
    Seattle, WA, US
  • Ruthie and Andrea,

    May the very fondest memories of Rick give you the strength to get through each day.

    I think about you every day, and say a little prayer for the two of you.

    I hope to see you at the “Healing Place”

    Terri Ann Wewhmeyer and Family

    Terri Ann Wehmeyer
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, CA
  • All the Robitaille’s family was schocked by this sad new and offer their sympathy.I remember Rick and you waiting I think so, the birth of Andreawhen I visited Seattle with René and Berhe, brother and sister of Jeanne in november 1991. Rick,Bernie and me taked a fast boat “clipper” to visit Victoria.Very good souvenir. Take care of you; Rick is ok and will be awake for his family.

    Love xox Jean

    Robitaille Jean
    November 4, 2014
    Laval, QC, CA
  • I keep a photo of Rick in my wallet of a fishing trip we all went on, I missed him when you all moved from the area, I had such great times whenever I saw him, He will be greatly missed. The Daltons

    Frank Dalton
    November 4, 2014
    seattle, WA, US
  • Dear Ruth and Andrea:

    We just learned today, 8/22, about the sudden loss of your husband, Ruth, and Andrea, your father. We are so sorry for yourloss.

    I’m sure your faith and family will support you during this tragic time.

    I cannot attend the mass tomrrow, but please know you are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Denise & Nate Nielsen

    Carnation, WA

    Denise & Nathan Nielsen
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, WA, US
  • Our thoughts and prays are with you. We remember all the good times we had with Rick.

    Kim and Linda Swanson
    November 4, 2014
    Banks, OR, US
  • Dear Ruth and Andrea,

    My prayers and thoughts are with you at this sorrowful time of losing Rick so suddenly. May our Provident God and family and friends be for you a source of strength, support and peace.

    Lovingly,

    Sr. Judy

    Sr. Judy Desmarais, SP
    November 4, 2014
    Montreal, QC, CA
  • Ruth and Andrea,

    I am so sorry. Words can’t express the sadness I feel for you. Rick was a very special person, such a loss. I will never forget how you and Rick were there to help me through rough times. I will truly miss celebrating his birthdays in Longbeach eating crab. Then there was the time he found Hannah when she was lost, he was her hero. If only we could have had more time with Rick. I’m going to miss him.

    Doreen
    November 4, 2014
    Pasco, WA, US
  • My husband Dan and I are very sorry to hear about Rick’s passing. Dan grew up with Rick. Rick got Dan a job at the BreweryI guess since Dan was always visiting he might as will work! I had just started seeing Dan at that time,so I was also at the brewery alot. Rick was a great guy. It was amazing what he could do on the computer. Our thoughts and prayers our with you.

    Love, The Haldeman’s

    Ruth Haldeman
    November 4, 2014
    Bend, OR, US
  • I’m really sorry that we’ve lost Rick, and sorry that we’d lost touch with each other over these many years. I’ve always remembered sinking a number of pints with Rick at Grants, and doing quality control research at pubs around Seattle, and when he told me he was getting out of the beer biz to get into computers?. I really wish we’d kept in touch.

    Marty Corey
    November 4, 2014
    Anacortes, WA, US
  • I am still getting over the shock of all this. Rick was one of the most well rounded people I have known in life. So intelligent, so funny, so kind. I’ll always remember the early days at Grant’s, all the hard work and good times we had. Ruth, you were so good for Rick and he so proud of you and Andrea. Bless you both, and all your families, at this time, with strength and understanding. Dan & Lorrie

    Dan & Lorrie Boutillier
    November 4, 2014
    Yakima, WA, US
  • Dear Ruth,we are thinking of you and Andrea at this difficult time. You are in our hearts and our prayers. Your neighbors from the past in Issaquah, who remember you all fondly.

    Guillaume & Paula Noyers
    November 4, 2014
    Monroe, WA, US
  • Ruth & Andrea…Troop 1945 is thinking of you. You have good friends on both sides of the mountains! Our love to you both.

    Sue Wattier
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, WA, US
  • Rick was a pleasure to have known. We only had good times together and his leaving us is difficult for all that knew him.

    Dennis and Tracy Newland
    November 4, 2014
    Monroe, WA, US
  • I’m sorry to hear about your brother Bernie. My heartfelt sympathy to you and your family.

    Dan Purpur
    November 4, 2014
    Kenmore, WA, US
  • Ruthie –

    Words cannot begin to express our shock and sadness at the loss of Rick. He always had a smile when he walked through the door of Uncle Sams. We were blessed to have met and grown to know such a wonderful man.

    Our hearts go out to you…talking is great therapy. Let us know when you are ready to get out, and we would love to meet you.

    Dave & Jo Moore

    Dave & Joanne Jo Moore
    November 4, 2014
    Richland, WA, US
  • I worked with Rick at Prism, Pac and Interact. I was so, so sorry to hear that he’s gone from us. I enjoyed working with him – he had a great sense of humor. As one of the developers of the Spectra database his name is often brought up and remembered fondly when talking about the system – a system that is still in use today! I will miss ya RickyD!

    Karen McCombs
    November 4, 2014
    Everett, WA, US
  • Ruthie,

    We are so shocked and upset. We are so suddenly overwhelmed by our own mortality. We will sincerely miss Rick’s presence each evening at Uncle Sam’s Saloon. He was always a delight to visit with. He was always positive, never saying an unkind word about anyone. If conversations turned to criticizing someone, he would not participate. His smile, his laugh, his soft spoken stories and his wit will not be replaced. He was truly a nice guy. Don’t forget that Uncle Sam’s Saloon makes the best grilled cheese sandwiches in the Tri-Cities. We look forward to seeing you again.

    Ken & Rae Ann DeLong
    November 4, 2014
    Richland, WA, US
  • Hi Ruth, I was shocked and totally saddened to see Rick’s obituaries in the paper on Saturday. I worked under and with Rick for about a year in ADI a few years back and we kept contact loosely afterward. He was truly a great boss, a good friend and 1st class human being. What impressed me the most about Rick was his kindness, heart, hard work and sense of humor. I am proud to call him a friend. Good bye, RickD.

    Al Shum
    November 4, 2014
    Seattle, WA, US
  • Ruthie and Andrea,

    May the very fondest memories of Rick give you the strength to get through each day.

    I think about you every day, and say a little prayer for the two of you.

    I hope to see you at the “Healing Place”

    Terri Ann Wewhmeyer and Family

    Terri Ann Wehmeyer
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, CA
  • All the Robitaille’s family was schocked by this sad new and offer their sympathy.I remember Rick and you waiting I think so, the birth of Andreawhen I visited Seattle with René and Berhe, brother and sister of Jeanne in november 1991. Rick,Bernie and me taked a fast boat “clipper” to visit Victoria.Very good souvenir. Take care of you; Rick is ok and will be awake for his family.

    Love xox Jean

    Robitaille Jean
    November 4, 2014
    Laval, QC, CA
  • I keep a photo of Rick in my wallet of a fishing trip we all went on, I missed him when you all moved from the area, I had such great times whenever I saw him, He will be greatly missed. The Daltons

    Frank Dalton
    November 4, 2014
    seattle, WA, US
  • Dear Ruth and Andrea:

    We just learned today, 8/22, about the sudden loss of your husband, Ruth, and Andrea, your father. We are so sorry for yourloss.

    I’m sure your faith and family will support you during this tragic time.

    I cannot attend the mass tomrrow, but please know you are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Denise & Nate Nielsen

    Carnation, WA

    Denise & Nathan Nielsen
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, WA, US
  • Our thoughts and prays are with you. We remember all the good times we had with Rick.

    Kim and Linda Swanson
    November 4, 2014
    Banks, OR, US
  • Dear Ruth and Andrea,

    My prayers and thoughts are with you at this sorrowful time of losing Rick so suddenly. May our Provident God and family and friends be for you a source of strength, support and peace.

    Lovingly,

    Sr. Judy

    Sr. Judy Desmarais, SP
    November 4, 2014
    Montreal, QC, CA
  • Ruth,

    Tom Glass just let me know about Rick and I am so sorry. He was a great person like yourself. Please feel free to email me or come down and visit when the time is right for you.

    Sincerely,

    Jeanie Glass

    Tom’s Ex-wife

    Jeanie Glass
    November 4, 2014
    Portland, OR, US
  • Ruthie,

    Glenn and I are truly sorry for you loss.

    Lisa

    Lisa Sliger
    November 4, 2014
    Woodinville, WA, US
  • My deepest sympathy to the entire family, and to my good buddy, Gerry. The nicest families lived on South Chestnut Street in Toppenish the Castillejas did too! … And you couldn’t find a brighter set of boys than the Desmarais. God Bless,

    Lucy

    Lucy Castilleja Hoffmann
    November 4, 2014
    Union, Gap, WA, US
  • Ruth and Andrea, We are so sorry for your loss. Rick was a wonderful man and father and will be missed by us all. Carrie, John and Delaney

    Carrie Bullinger
    November 4, 2014
    Redmond, WA, US
  • I am sorry for your loss. I baby sat Rick for few years as a cute little boy in Moxee. He come from a very loving family.

    God bless you.

    Celine Lemaire Bates

    Celine Lemaire Bates
    November 4, 2014
    Yakima,, WA, US
  • We’ve known Rick since the early days of the Grant’s Brewery and we’re saddened to hear of his passing.

    He will be missed, and our best wishes pour out to his family.

    Love and Peace to all who knew Ricky.

    He was one of the good guys.

    Chuck & Billie Glass

    Chuck Glass
    November 4, 2014
    Everett, WA, US
  • Ruth and Andrea: Loss is something I think we never truely get over. Just know that I will always be at your side to hold your hand if you ever need me. Love, Miriam

    Miriam Emry
    November 4, 2014
    Desert, Aire, WA, US
  • We are so very sorry for your loss. Rick’s entrance made the room. His smile and kindness shared it with us. Rich and Nicki

    Rich Buchanan
    November 4, 2014
    Redmond, WA, US
  • While in high school Rick and I worked together as box boys in Toppenish. After he came back from New York and started building the brewery me and a friend of mineDan Haldemanuse to hang out with him at his work and sit around and sample beer with him. What fun we had. I dont know how he ever got much done with us hanging out there. I have many fond memories of Rick. Mike Pecheos.

    Mike Pecheos
    November 4, 2014
    Sunnyside, WA, US
  • A dear and wonderful friend that always put a smile on my face.

    He will always stay close to my heart… never to be forgotten.

    Linda Stanley
    November 4, 2014
    Carnation, WA, US
  • I remember being at Desert Aire and looking at fruit trees in your backyard, Andrea. Your father was really nice and let me try an unripe apple and then we all went inside and watched Office Space. Your father was very nice and kind to everybody,and I am so sorry that you have lost him.

    -Delaney

    Delaney Bullinger
    November 4, 2014
    Redmond, WA, US