Richard was a tech kid. He loved studying anything science, technology, engineering and math related, but eventually found his calling in chemistry. He welcomed any discussion of a technical nature and was always excited to learn new things. He attended San Diego Mesa College and later transferred to the University of California, Irvine where he majored in chemistry, and had hopes of attending graduate school in chemistry or medicine.
From Richard’s earliest childhood, he had a love of fishing. He started fishing off of the Shelter Island Pier with his dad about the time he started walking, and throughout his life enjoyed fishing the local islands and Southern California coastlines with his family. He also enjoyed his countless summers at the Mission Bay Sports Center sailing and kayaking around the Mission and San Diego bays, Karate at USA Freestyle, and Padres games with batting practice chasing home runs and autographs.
Richard was an avid baseball player and started training at 4-years-old with coach Brisco’s training camp at Cabrillo Elementary where he learned to grab a ball and hurl it. Over the next 12 years, he played baseball with his dad as his coach at Peninsula Little League and Tecolote Youth Baseball, and played on Point Loma High School’s freshman team before being sidelined with ankle injuries. Even with the ankle injuries, he often helped his dad coach his brother Andrew’s baseball and sister Allison’s softball teams. Richard also had a season on the Point Loma High swim team.
Richard was a fierce protector of his sister and brothers and had a natural patience and gentleness for kids. Whether he was battling in Mario Cart game sessions on the Nintendo with Andrew and Allison, helping them with Spanish, math or physics homework, wrestling and reading Daniel Tiger stories to Owen, being the fearless Legoland rider with cousins Simon and Michaela, or playing airplane with cousin David, Richard was always ready to scoop them up in his loving arms with a huge smile and a big bear hug.
Richard had a lot of fun with his grandparents too, including his weekly “Nana days” spent gardening, visiting San Diego’s playgrounds and baking cookies with his Nana and Char; sleepovers and bottomless pancakes with his Bubbe and Zaydeh; and long weekends at grandma’s where he built fantastic model car tracks and skyscrapers and enjoyed the steady supply of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream.
In addition to his human family, Richard loved his dogs, and has been the loving caregiver for Junior and Juniorette – his two ball python’s for the past 12 years.
Richard never missed an opportunity to extend a helping hand to his family, friends and neighbors, and he will be forever missed but his spirit will live on in the people that love him.
Richard is survived by his dad and stepmom, Gary and Dawn Eastman, his mother Amy Snyder, sister Allison, brothers Andrew and Owen, grandparents Saul and Sonya Snyder, Barbara Rose, Char Katz, and countless extended family members who will all miss him dearly.
A Celebration of Life service is being held at the Point Loma Community Presbyterian Church 2:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 6. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Tecolote Youth Baseball.