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Obituary for Richard Allen Tipton

Richard Allen Tipton passed away unexpectedly last Friday, August 4, 2017 at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, Michigan.

He was born on December 22, 1945 at Memorial Hospital to parents Russell Tipton and Dorothy Mae (Onstott) Tipton. He was raised in Elsie and graduated from Elsie High School in 1964. Shortly after Rich joined the United States Army where he proudly served his country during the Vietnam war. He returned home in the spring of 1967. Rich resided in Owosso for the majority of his adult life. 

Rich's body and "original engine" may have been 71 years old, but if you knew him at all you never really thought about his age because the energy and commitment he gave to his family, work and friends was truly timeless. He was a constant and comfortable aspect of life for so many people. He loved getting up early every morning to go get coffee. What many of us didn't realize over all those years was that Rich was much like our morning coffee... something that we needed, looked forward to and often took for granted because it is always readily available. It offered comfort and encouragement in order to better take on the day and navigate life. Just like our "morning coffee,"  Rich had the unique ability to provide people what they needed when they needed it... many times it was as simple as just being there ready to lend an ear, a hand, a smile or his unmistakable laugh. 

Rich is survived by his wife of 39 years Anne (Thomas), three children: Molly Tipton, Abbie (Tipton) Majzel and her husband Dan, all of Owosso, and Andrew Tipton along with granddaughter Sophia Anne Tipton of Grand Rapids. Additional family members include his brother and sister-in-law Ron and Kayla Tipton, brother-in-law Mark Thomas and his wife Pam; nephews Brian Tipton, Kyle Thomas and Ethan Thomas; along with nieces Jamie (Tipton) Young, husband Jayson, their son Quincy and Elizabeth Thomas. Rich was predeceased by his father, Russell Duane Tipton; his mother, Dorothy Mae Lidle; stepfather, Don Lidle and in-laws Charles and Marilyn Thomas. 

Rich's professional career was mainly based in two industries, construction and transportation. One of his greatest attributes was his strong work ethic. He believed in the dignity of work in addition to the sense of pride and accomplishment it could offer. He combined that work ethic with his outstanding emotional intelligence and ability to build positive relationships. Rich was able to get along with everyone. For many years he worked in the construction industry as a partner in Tipton Caverson Poured Walls. Later in life he moved on into the transportation field and eventually became the owner/operator of Tipton Trucking until his retirement in 2016.

There is no doubt that the pride and joy of his life was his family. From youth to adulthood his mother would always describe him as a "tender heart" and that is exactly what he offered to his wife, children, relatives and friends. He would also offer that courtesy to strangers as well. Grace, compassion, kindness, unconditional care and love were his primary tools which he often utilized in a soft-spoken, friendly and, many times, humorous manner.  

Rich took great pleasure and satisfaction from being able to help and assist others. He was truly a "first responder" in that respect.  He never hesitated to drop everything and offer his time, talents and treasure in a time of need. He loved heading up north and boating with family and friends. Chocolate ice cream and big handfuls of popcorn were a favorite addiction along with the family dog and anything that possessed a motor. He loved vehicles of all types and he relished providing for the transportation needs of his family. 

A favorite story for Rich and a proud moment for his family was just over a year ago when his children surprised him for his 70th birthday by giving him the original Corvette he had purchased decades earlier.  With the arrival of twins, Rich decided it was time to sell the car. Over 25 years later he discovered it in a dealer showroom in Flint. The kids wanted to do something for their dad because he spent a lifetime doing things for them. The story and video went viral playing on news networks across the nation. Rich laughed often that he made it on Fox and Friends!  

Rich's lasting legacy and what he was always most proud of is the wonderful family he helped build with his wife Anne. He will also cherish the many wonderful relationships he has shared with friends and relatives.  He will certainly be remembered as a "kind-hearted and caring individual who would give you the shirt off his back if needed. He did his best to practice the Golden Rule, presume positive intentions and see the best in all people. Our world today could certainly use more of that. He is greatly loved and will be greatly missed. 

The family will be holding a Celebration of Life this Friday, August 11, 2017 at Nelson-House Funeral Home in Owosso. Visitation will be from 3PM to 7PM. 

In lieu of flowers, Memorial contributions can be made to the Sophia Anne Tipton Educational Fund.


To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of Richard Allen Tipton, please visit our Tribute Store.

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Visitation

Friday

11

Aug

3:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Owosso Chapel

120 E. Mason Street
Owosso, MI 48867

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