|Dick Van Patten with his wife Patty& son Jimmy, in Palm Springs (photo: Palm Springs Life)|
|with Dick Van Patten in Palm Springs, 2009|
Dick had a great sense of humor...his jokes were always hugely funny and he had great comedic timing. Years ago, back when I worked for Petco, Dick was known for telling some truly hilarious, and now legendary jokes at the Petco Trade Show and Managers Meeting. Attendees of the annual event would literally wait with great anticipation for him to appear on stage to hear his big joke. Some years his jokes had an edgy double entendre, yet still respectable, leaving the audience rolling on the floor.
|Dick loved my dog Sheldon!|
|Dick's Star in Palm Springs|
Dickie and his family assembled for the star dedication, and other celebrities including Lily Tomlin, Tom Bosley, Ruta Lee, Debbie Gibson, Jerry Vale attended that day. Following the star dedication, we hosted a private luncheon afterward at Spencer's Restaurant. I shall never forget what a nice weekend that was, and how happy Dick was to receive this honor from the Palm Springs community.
And so, as is the case in this life, all good things must come to an end. He was one of the nicest guys in Hollywood, and a man I called friend. He encouraged me when I needed confidence, and he listened when I needed a sounding board to make personal and professional decisions. Above all, he always made me feel comfortable and relaxed.
I cannot sufficiently express the depth of my admiration, respect and love for Dickie Van Patten or what he meant to me. I cried when the word came that Dick had passed. I cried because he always made me feel like a son, and welcomed me into his life.
Thank you, Dick Van Patten for many fond memories and many great laughs.
Your pal, Rick.