Cover photo for Richard Joseph Harper's Obituary
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1959 Richard 2022

Richard Joseph Harper

April 26, 1959 — November 30, 2022

St. George

Richard Joseph Harper was tragically shot and killed on November 30, 2022 at his residence in St. George Utah.  He was born April 26, 1959 (the second of eleven children born to Grace and Richard Harper) in Seattle, King County, Washington.  

He lived in several other states while growing up in an Air Force family.  Richard was always adventuresome.  Everything from sports, competitive games, raising pets, building forts, camping, exploring and martial arts caught his attention early.  Athletic abilities/skills seemed to come naturally and he never seemed to struggle in school.

Later in life, he became interested in handyman trades like auto mechanics, carpentry, electronics and general construction.  A few years after graduating from Minot High School (ND), he attended Wadena Area Vocational Technical Institute (MN), where he eventually became a certified electrician.  

Throughout his life, he was never afraid of trying something new or starting another career.  He had an uncanny ability to present and sell ideas...something that blessed and cursed him.  He was an entrepenuer at heart and dreamed big.

Many were amazed that he seemed to be able to survive off of little (he was never afraid or embarrassed to "rough it").  His personality was magnetic and he would often be the center of attention (even his enemies would end up liking him).  

Not unlike his father (his namesake), his close calls, injuries and dangerous feats, were far too many to mention.  Telling of such stories (whether true or embellished) might have better been told with a warning attached (especially to impressionable minds)...he could make anything sound fun and acceptable.

But along with these crazy antics, there were also times of bravery and accomplishment.  One sibling remembers a time when the family car caught fire on the way home from church.  When the car was stopped (and while this particular sibling said, "run for your life"), Richard calmly investigated the car and found a clump of burning straw that had blown underneath the vehicle from a nearby farm field.  He retrieved a long object and pushed it out.  When repairing things, his father (partially out of frustration) would exclaim that Richard would figure out how to fix difficult things by "accident".

Richard is survived by his wife Victoria Harper and their two children, Spencer and Amilya; his former wife Lori Harper and their two children, Justine (Luke) Kloos and Richard "Rich" Harper; his mother, Grace Harper; and his siblings: Vickie Vaan Harper (Terry) Cridlebaugh (from a previous marriage to his father); Janina (Albert) Castillo; Robert (Karen) Harper; Michelle Harper; Domonique (Neal) Williams; Christine Harper; Rodney (Kristine) Harper; Damon (Jennifer) Harper; Christopher (Amity) Harper; and Wendy (Nick) Cypert along with several nieces and nephews and numerous grand nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his father, Richard Harper, and his brother, Roger (Kim) Harper.

Memorial Service will be held at 3:00 pm on Saturday, December 10, 2022 at Hughes Mortuary, 1037 East 700 South, St. George, Utah

To send flowers to the family in memory of Richard Joseph Harper, please visit our flower store.

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Saturday, December 10, 2022

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Mountain time)


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