May 1, 1952 ~ May 9, 2004

Born in: Columbus, MS,
Resided in: Asheville, NC

Richard Glenn “Rick” Harper, 52, of 20 Shope Creek Estate Drive, Asheville, died Sunday, May 9, 2004, at the Hospice Solace Center. A native of Columbus, MS, he was the son Louis W. Harper, Sr. and stepson of Martha Harper of Houston, TX, and the late Lois Greene Harper. He attended Mississippi State University and had lived in Asheville for ten years. He was a professional musician who played a number of instruments but specialized in percussion. In addition to his father, he is survived by his wife, Karen Longhurst Harper; a brother, Louis W. “Butch” Harper, Jr. of Memphis, TN, a niece, Kimberly Harper; three nephews, Preston, Jason and Mac Harper and four aunts, Bobbie Greene, Linda Fultz, Jean Conn and Doris Morgan. A memorial service will be at 1:00 p.m. Saturday at Groce United Methodist Church with the Reverend Christy Brookshire officiating. Memorials may be made to Mountain Area Hospice, PO Box 25338, Asheville, NC 28813, or to Animal Compassion Network, PO Box 1704, Skyland, NC 28776, or to Groce United Methodist Church, 954 Tunnel Road, Asheville, NC 28805.

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  1. Karen,

    Please accept my sympathy during your time of loss. When I think of Rick, I think of his big, bright smile and sharing music trivia with him. I think of you often and hope you find comfort in your family and friends at this time.

    God bless,

    Andy

    Reply
  2. Karen;
    We haven’t met. I only met Rick once–we jammed together at your house, but we hit it off right away. He was a good man and a fine musician. I just wanted to say that I’m so sorry for your loss. I was looking forward to playing with Rick in the near future. His sudden departure has shocked and saddened me. You’re in my thoughts. Sincerely; Angelo Santa Maria

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  3. Karen, please know that you have been in my thoughts and prayers and will continue to be. I’ll talk with you soon. Susan H. Ayers

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  4. Karen: I have never met you. I have heard so many kind and wonderful things about you during the past weeks that Ricky was hospitalized.

    Ricky and I played together from June 1971 to Spring of 1972 in a band called ‘Tubby Fick’ he was always a good solid drummer and fun to be around as well as to call a friend.

    Our prayers and thoughts will continue for the days, weeks and months ahead for you. Please know that you have friends you have never met and they all share your grief at this time.

    Sincerely,

    Scotty Allen

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  5. DEAR KAREN, HE WAS SUCH A SPECIAL PERSON! I HAVE NOTHING BUT GREAT MEMORIES OF HIM. HE WAS ALSO A GREAT MUSICIAN. HE TAUGHT ME HOW TO PLAY THE GUITAR AND I STILL HAVE HIS GUITAR THAT HE GAVE ME IN 1976. I LOVED HIM AND WILL MISS HIM DEARLY. MY THOUGHTS ARE WITH YOU. LOVE ALWAYS, SUZAN

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  6. Dear Karen,

    You have my heartfelt sympathy on your loss. Although it has been many years since I have seen you and Ricky, I will always have fond memories of all the fun things we used to do ‘way back when’? in Columbus. My thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

    Sincerely,

    Reply
  7. DEAREST KAREN, YOU DO NOT KNOW ME, BUT I FEEL I KNOW YOU THROUGH SUZAN BARDWELL & EDDIE GREENE. MY LITTLE SISTER (PAM) KNEW RICKY WAY BACK AND WE ARE SO SORRY OF YOUR LOSS. RICKY WILL BE DEEPLY MISSED AND YOU ARE IN OUR PRAYERS. PLEASE KEEP IN TOUCH ON HOW YOUR DOING. I’D LOVE TO MEET YOU ONE DAY, BUT TAKE CARE FOR NOW.

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  8. I’ll always remember Ricky as a fine musician and a good friend who liked to have a good time.
    The first time I ever went to Nashville was to visit Ricky. We went to the Bluebird and some other places with live music; but ended up at somebody’s house where we spent all night recording and re-recording silly messages on the answering machine. It was just a fun game that we made up.
    I was really saddened to hear of his tragic situation and death. It’s just a helpless feeling.
    I miss Ricky a lot.

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  9. Karen,
    I barely knew Ricky on a personal level but I’ve spent the last 15+ years playing with guys who knew him well.
    We’d be packing up after a gig and someone, usually Jim Beatty, would say, ‘Did I ever tell you about the time Ricky…?’ I also had a tape of some of Ricky’s musical musings and will never forget his song about Oprah.
    Karen I hope you find some comfort in knowing that the warmth of Ricky’s spirit lives on in many of the lives he touched.

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  10. Karen, Rick and I worked at Sounds Familiar together I have many funny and crazy stories and memories of Rick He was one of a kind. I’m sorry for your loss. He was always a very special person to everyone he came in contact with. I am glad I ran into you guys downtown several months back.

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  11. Karen,
    We haven’t met but I’ve heard nothing but kind words about you. I am profoundly saddened by the news of Ricky’s passing. I played with Ricky in Mariah, Ricky and the Saladmasters, and the Dips during the late 70’s early 80’s. We also shared countless hours recording song ideas and such. He was one of the most original and creative guys I ever met and I will never forget him. If there is anything I can do, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

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  12. I met Ricky at the Straight 8 Jr. in 1972 or about, when he played with Tubby Fick. I think we even had a ‘date’ once. All my thoughts of our past days bring warm memories and smiles. He was so kind,funny,and thoughtful,never did I think we would not meet here again. I am so sorry for this loss,please know you are being thought of now and for the days ahead.

    Reply
  13. Aunt Kars,
    I just want you to know that Rick meant a lot to me…I am sorry that I could not be there for you…You are always in my heart and in my prays…I will always be here for you…Rick was a great uncle…he always made me smile and laugh…love you always

    Reply

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