In Memory of: Richard Carl “Dick” Erickson, Ph.D

October 28, 1937 – February 5, 2021


Richard Carl Erickson died in his sleep early in the morning of February 5, 2021 from complications of Parkinson’s Disease. Eighty-three years old, Dick was born at Swedish Hospital in Seattle to Richard Carl Erickson and Elizabeth Dinges Erickson. He graduated from Lincoln High School and the University of Washington. He married Joyce Quiring in 1958 and thus also became a beloved member of the Quiring family for more than 62 years.


He earned a Master of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, in 1962 and served as pastor of two churches in Illinois before returning to the University of Washington where he earned a Ph.D. in psychology in 1969. He spent his career as a clinical psychologist at VA Hospitals in Seattle, Portland, Oregon, and Brockton, Massachusetts, until his retirement in 2003. He was appointed as clinical professor at the University of Washington, Oregon Health Sciences University and Harvard Medical School. During his tenure at the VA, he also served as training director and specialized and published in inpatient group therapy, outcome studies and neuropsychological testing. After his retirement, he taught undergraduates at Daystar University in Nairobi, Kenya, for a semester, traveled to Vietnam as part of a group training health care professionals and served on the Institutional Review Board of the Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. He also served as pastoral parish associate at Woodland Park Presbyterian Church in Seattle for 20 years, on Seattle Presbytery committees, and on the board of Presbyterian Counseling Services.


What he loved: the love of his life Joyce; his daughter, sons, and granddaughters; his son- and daughters-in law (AKA the Erickson Support Group) and— in alphabetical order—chopping vegetables in the WPPC soup kitchen; collecting books on philosophy, theology, biblical studies, science; collecting stamps; Easter Vigil services; Evensong in English cathedrals; fishing; garage sales; Garrison Keillor; Harper-Collins Study Bible; gin martinis without a whisper of Vermouth; hiking; jazz; lifetime friend Jerry Pollock; long conversations with friends over dinner; making wine; Middle Eastern and South Asian food; MJQ; Mt. Rainier; Mozart; mystery novels; national parks; North Cascades highway; Pacific Northwest Ballet; Pacific Northwest Indian art; Petite Sirah; presiding at Communion; Raven; road trips; Seattle Art Museum; Swedish Christmas Eve meals; teaching adult Christian education; teaching his children to fish; Teilhard de Chardin; tent camping; travel to the British Isles, Europe, Africa, Bolivia; used bookstores; writing sermons.


What we remember him for: his kindness, his intelligence, his trenchant wit; his oft-repeated sayings and stories; his inimical laugh; his library; his gourmet cooking; his wine; his challah.


He was preceded in death by his parents and his younger brother George and is survived by his wife, daughter Diana Erickson (Lee Strucker), sons David Erickson (Merrill Sovner) and Jonathan Erickson (Bethany Wathne), and granddaughters Madelynne and Ellen. Memorial gifts may be made to Operation Nightwatch or Rainier Valley Food Bank. The family is grateful for care in his last months from JoyTera Care Home. He was buried in a natural grave at Herland Forest in Klickitat County in a quilt made by his grandmother. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.


A memorial service will be held via Zoom on Saturday, February 27, at 11am. The Zoom login info can be found on the homepage. Please email wppcoffice@gmail.com for the password.

               

 

 

 

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