ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
Richard Wall was truly a Renaissance man-so knowledgeable about so many things and master of so many trades. A college biology professor by profession, he was much more than that: historian, carpenter, environmentalist, gentleman farmer, theologian, restorer of antique tractors, fix-it man… the list could go on.
For the community of Hillsboro, his genius came together in the Friesen Mill, a working replica of a historical treasure that Richard built almost solely from one or two faded photographs. Amazing.
Beyond his intelligence, ingenuity and vigorous work ethic, Richard had a huge heart. He was quick to share his skills with others and so reticent to ask for anything in return.
On Sunday, Richard lost his battle for physical restoration on this earth following a stem-cell transplant done in early September to combat a pre-leukemia blood condition. That he died on Easter speaks to the greater restoration he has achieved.
The void created by his absence will never be entirely filled for wife JoAnn and daughters Jenny and Julie-or for any of us who had the true privilege of enjoying him in our midst. -DR