NORMAN — Richard Lee Alexander, 61, of Norman, ran into the arms of Jesus on Wednesday, April 23, 2014, after a long illness. Rick was born Feb. 8, 1953, in Moline, Ill. He attended Western High School in Las Vegas and graduated in 1971, where he played football, wrestled and participated in track.
He moved to Oklahoma for college, where he went on to play football for Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College in Miami, Okla. He earned a Bachelor of Science in education from Central State University in 1977. In 1976, he met his beloved wife, Peggy Wright, on a blind date. They married later that year.
Rick loved sports and was an avid Oklahoma football and basketball fan. He was recently inducted into the OU Quarter Century Club for his steadfast support to the University of Oklahoma. He loved to be called “Coach” by his grandchildren. Rick spent many years of his life coaching, including years spent in the Putnam City School District, where he taught history and coached football, wrestling and track.
He also enjoyed many years coaching a men’s softball team for First Baptist Church of Norman, where he was a member. Some of his favorite coaching adventures were those spent in Little League with his daughters.
In 1980, Rick and his family moved to Norman, where he began working for his father-in-law’s family business, Wright’s IGA. He managed the grocery store on North Porter Avenue until he retired after a stroke in 2012. His employees loved him. His compassionate heart was always willing to help the next person in need, and he offered great support to those he employed. Even after his retirement, his loyal employees continued to show their support.
The family would like to recognize and express sincere gratitude to the many individuals at Norman Regional Hospital and Grace Living Center who provided care with their hands, as well as their hearts.