John P. Richards

John P. Richards was a creative young man who loved nature and basketball, his mother Joanne said.

“He wrote extremely well,” his mother said, “Anything he wrote had a flair to it.”

By the time he was 9, Mr. Richards was writing well-developed characters, creating what he called the World Almanac of People, she said.

Lisa Floading, his communications teacher at Port Washington High School, “saw the beauty in his writing and encouraged him,” his mother said. “He had talent.”

Mr. Richards loved to read, his mother added, and that fueled his love of writing.

But his passion, his mother said, was basketball.

“He loved basketball,” she said, adding he worked hard to develop his skills.

“He put so many hours in,” she said. “If John wanted to learn something, he put his heart and soul into it.”

Mr. Richards died Wednesday, March 28, in Illinois. He was 18.

Mr. Richards was born in Las Vegas on May 17, 1999, to Jeff and Joanne Weitzer Richards.

When he was 4, the family moved to Port Washington, where Mr. Richards attended Ozaukee Day Care and Saukville Elementary School.

The family then returned to Las Vegas, where Mr. Richards played in the youth basketball league and attended Durango High School before the family moved back to Port.

Mr. Richards played basketball and ran track during his junior year at Port High and graduated with honors in 2017.

He enjoyed gaming, especially the NBA2K series, and was a fan of the Star Wars movie franchise.

He loved nature, and volunteered at Riveredge Nature Center in the Town of Saukville.

“He loved going there,” his mother said. He also enjoyed taking walks with his family and spending time on Port Washington’s north bluff.

“He loved the bluff most of all — he just felt peaceful there,” his mother said. “He loved the water.

Mr. Richards also enjoyed lifting weights with his father.

“He was a gentle, happy soul,” his mother said. “He was kind and affectionate. He had a great sense of humor, joyful and beautiful.

“His goal in life was to bring joy to others.”

Mr. Richards is survived by his parents, Jeff and Joanne of Port Washington, and his grandparents Ralph and Yvonne Weitzer of Franklin and Thomas Richards of Port Washington.

He was preceded in death by his grandmother Gloryanne Richards.

A memorial service for Mr. Richards will be held at 5 p.m. Friday, April 6, at Eernisse Funeral home in Port Washington. Father Patrick Wendt will officiate.

Visitation will be at the funeral home Friday from 3 p.m. until the service.

Memorials to the Port Washington High School counseling department, where Mr. Richards found mentors in Jennifer Herlache, Kris Hess and the rest of the staff, are suggested.

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494
 

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