Rick Harrison, Rest In Peace Dear Friend

Add this to another long list of regrets in my life: not meeting my good friend, fellow musician and all around rock-solid human being, Rick Harrison.

I was notified just a few moments ago that Rick died a few days ago of a heart attack, 11/14/2008.

I cannot begin to share my sadness. Although I never met Rick, he was an indelible part of this site. We shared a lot of ups and downs in the last several years, personal, political and otherwise.

He was a good friend to all the editors here and one of the earliest, original members of The Agonist and had the best, most wicked sense of humor I’ve come across in a long time. He rarely wrote diaries, but when he did, they sang out with life and an affirmation that goodness was real and possible, that family and friends and song made life worth living.

I literally just found out a few moments ago and wanted to pass on the information.

I’ll be posting some highlights from his diaries and thoughts from his family very soon. But for now, my heart and prayers are with the Harrison Family and his wife today. Rick was one of our own. One of the best, one of the good guys. And I will miss him, very, very much.

Other editors of the site and readers are welcome to add to this post their thoughts as well.

Update: I hate having to type this, but here is his obituary, please sign the guest book, and as Rick was in life, so he is in death, suggesting donations to charity in lieu of flowers. We really have lost one of our own. As the day wears on I realize just how much I will miss Rick.

Also see: Rick Harrison, 1952-2008: Best of Diaries

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Sean Paul Kelley

Traveler of the (real) Silk Road, scholar and historian, photographer and writer - founder of The Agonist.

25 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I will really miss Rick’s humor and friendship, he was a great person and will be missed dearly. And to Rick I promise not to post cute animal pictures in your honor…although I had a adorable cat on horse one I had been saving just for the right moment.

    Friday Cat Slagging

  • …here and I am sure many more in realspace. The only way I can sum up my feelings towards Rick is to say he’s a really great guy, someone I respected and will continue to respect a very great deal – his essential nature came through very strongly in his every interaction with others and that nature is damned fine. To have lived such that everyone who knows him through this medium, one so commonly prone to casual misunderstanding and pointless vitriol, thinks him such a fine person is a testament to him.

    E Tenebris Lux

  • Rick and I are of similar age. Shared a love for music.

    There were times when he offered a simple word of encouragement. When that word came from Rick, it meant something.

    I miss him already.

    I did inhale.

  • This feels very strange. This is the first time I’ve “lost” someone I’ve known only through cyberspace, and yet, because of both the nature of this site and the quality of human being Rick was, in many ways, I felt like I knew him well and as a consequence of his passing, there will be an empty hole here each day.

    He had the ability to restore my perspective and could cut through crap faster and more neatly than most; he was funny and irreverent, wise and a wise guy….my kind of people.

    Rock In Peace, amigo.

    “Lord! What Fools these Mortals be!”

  • whose irreverent, ironic good humor and fundamental human decency came through loud and clear.

    Rick lived his life doing what he loved to do – making music. A life with such a consistent, unwavering, passionate love, pursued with diligence from the first day of adulthood to the last, is a life damned well lived, and far more than many would be able to say they made of themselves.

    A shockingly unexpected loss; a very sad day. Here’s wishing you a speedy and painless passage, Rick.

    “The best-informed man is not necessarily the wisest. Indeed there is a danger that precisely in the multiplicity of his knowledge he will lose sight of what is essential.”

    – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

  • flamefester without peer, man in the middle, drinker, thinker, pseud-stopper, bebopper, wit, geek, proud family guy, old web friend.

    Yes, I can come up with a post-election signature, just… not… yet…

  • You will be sorely missed man in the middle for your humor, encyclopedic knowledge of music, compassion, common sense and generosity of spirit.

    “I despise ideologues masquerading as objective journalists.” – Bill O’Reilly, March 30, 2007

  • We may try to protect ourselves from our sadness by not talking about our loss. Yet, as difficult as it is, we must feel it to heal it. Through the medium of music, that was so much part of Rick, we can celebrate the beautiful and thoughtful person he was. A collection of some of the music videos he has posted over the years will allow us to touch once more, the essence of the “man in the middle”, our Rick. Rest in peace, Rick. I will miss you.

    We are healed of a suffering only by experiencing it in the full” Marcel Proust

    I just can’t believe that Rick has passed away. The shock is profound! It gives all the more meaning to the saying: “Live each day as if it were your last”.

    Tolerating prostitution is tolerating abuse and torture of women and children.

  • I didn’t know him very well like many others on here, but his comments and blogs always had my attention, they had weight. I did see what so many others have noted about him, his character, wit and humour. He will be missed for sure.

    Bon Voyage Rick


  • This comes as a big shock, and although I, like many of us here, have not come to know Rick personally, I feel like having lost one of a kin – a kindred spirit. Through his humor, contributions, and by tirelessly promoting our articles to Buzzflash and DiggIt, Rick showed great appreciation for our work and added irreplaceable value to our all site.
    My thoughts and best wishes are with his family in this hour of grief and loss.

  • “Is not our first thought to go on the road? The road is our source, our vault of treasures, our wealth. Only on the road does the ‘traveller’ feel like himself, at home.”
    Ryszard Kapuscinski

  • From Christmas Trees, to Microsoft Monthlies, political fun, musical madness, family stuff, horse happenings and cat slagging, Rick gave much to the agonist family.

    Vale friend.

    My sympathy to Ricks’ family and agonist friends.

    The years have gone quickly since the Iraq war began, Rick is missed already 🙁

  • Brightened my day and broadened my mind Rick. Blessings on you and yours, keep an eye on us, and get things ready for me up there, will ya?

    “I beseech you in the bowels of christ think it possible you may be mistaken.”

  • I can’t believe Rick is not with us. Really he was an essential part of this site. He had very good sense of humor and god gifted talent- and most importantly a nice personality. We are missing you Rick- hope you can see our post from haven.

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