Richard Leonard Merker died in Nampa, ID on September 30, 2022, at age 79. He was the son of Leonard G. Merker and Marian E. Merker. Richard was born in Carthage, Missouri on November 15, 1942, and grew up in Richland, WA. He graduated from Richland’s Columbia High School in 1962. He worked at Dietrich’s Food Market while attending high school and while attending Columbia Basin College. He served two years in the Army and was stationed in Cam Ranh Bay, Viet Nam. After army service, he attended Eastern Washington State College in Cheney, WA. There he met his first wife, Claudia Epley, and they married December 20, 1969. They made their home in Spokane where Richard worked for Safeway. In 1983 they moved back to Richland where Richard worked for Safeway and Battelle at Hanford. Richard had a strong work ethic and took pride in his work. Claudia passed away from illness in 1999. Richard married Jamelyn Beeson on November 8, 2003, and they resided in Pasco,WA until he retired. They moved to Nampa, ID to be closer to family. Richard was a loyal family member who took care of his elderly parents and both of his wives during their illnesses. He was generous to friends, and he faithfully served the Lord at church and in the Gideons.
Richard was preceded in death by his parents, first wife, and uncle, John Eckman. He is survived by his wife, Jamelyn Merker; Stepson and wife, Lance and Donna Beeson and their 4 children RJ, Jackson, Trey and Lily Beeson, Step daughter Michelle Murray and her husband Kermit and sons Matthew and Nathan Murray; sister, Phyllis (William) Hill; niece, Melissa (Austin) Youmans and their two children; aunt, Robin Eckman; and cousin, Sarah (Shaun) Sargent and their son.
On Friday, October 28, a memorial open house will be held for Richard from 3 – 6 pm at Alsip and Persons Funeral Chapel, 404 10th Avenue South, Nampa, ID 83651. All friends are invited.
On Tuesday, November 15 at 1 pm, a graveside ceremony will be held for Richard with military honors at Einan’s Sunset Gardens, 915 Bypass Highway, Richland, WA 99352. Friends are welcome.
In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Richard may be made to The Gideons International at www.sendtheword.org.