Merrick "Rick" Maltby passed away peacefully, surrounded by loved ones, on December 26, 2012 at Overlake Hospital. Complications from pneumonia were the cause, but in the past few years Rick also battled Diabetes and Congestive Heart Failure.
Born in Seattle to Harold Maltby and Beatrice Montpetit, Rick was a born and raised "Seattleite", attending Lowell Elementary and graduating from Garfield High School ('63). Rick married his high school sweetheart, Erica Tatsumi, in August of 1964. Rick joined the Air Force and the two moved to Yuba City, California where he was stationed at Beale Air Force Base. Renting a place for $75 a month, while making only $70 a month, the two began their lives as husband and wife, with a baby boy on the way.
After his short stint in the Air Force, Rick and Erica moved back to Seattle to raise their family. Rick graduated from the University of Washington, earning his B.A. in Education and eventually teaching in the Seattle School District. A teaching "lifer" he taught for several years at South Shore Middle School, starting in the wood shop, eventually moving to social studies and then mathematics. He later moved up north and taught mathematics at Eckstein Middle School remaining there until his retirement three years ago.
Rick loved living in the Northwest and enjoyed getting outside to see the natural beauty of the region. His biggest passion was getting out on his motorcycle, and most recently his Can-Am, just riding local roads and highways in search of the next great local destination. Rick also loved classic cars and could often be seen at local car shows checking out the some of the finest cars around the Sound. Even surrounded by fancy cars, Rick and his Can-Am were often the center of attention as car and motorcycle enthusiast inquired about the different looking three-wheeler, and he enjoyed the attention.
Rick's toughest struggles came from losing his own family loved ones. His second son, David Lyle (3 months), passed away from SIDS in 1967 while Rick was still stationed in the Air Force. Later, when his wife Erica was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1989, Rick faithfully stood by and supported her throughout her eight year battle until she passed away in August of 1997.
Afterwards, Rick focused on his family, remaining close to his two adult children and becoming a grandfather of four. The biggest smiles on his face came from being with his grandchildren and he loved spoiling them with love and gifts. He was often seen at school band concerts and park department basketball games to support his two local grandchildren Jackson and David. Rick would also make a couple of trips a year down to Phoenix to visit with his daughter Dayna, her husband Mike, and their children Hannah and Matteo. His passion became spoiling his grandchildren, and then returning them to their parents. It was a role he cherished until his final days.
A few years ago, Rick starting communicating with a retired teacher in Japan, Ritsuko Takizawa. With their shared educational backgrounds, they hit it off quickly and Ritsuko made several visits to the U.S. to see Rick. Although they had a language and cultural barrier to overcome, the two found love and companionship and were married July 20, 2012 in a small ceremony in Lynnwood.
Rick was survived by his second wife, Ritsuko Takizawa Maltby, his sister Diana Witherow, his son Richard, his daughter Dayna, and his four grandchildren, Jackson (15), David (13), Hannah (6), and Matteo (6).
The family asks in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the American Diabetes Association in Rick's name.
A small outside burial service will take place Thursday, January 10, 2:30pm at Sunset Hills Memorial Park. Seating will be limited, all are welcome. Dress for the weather.