Richard Paul Pugh, 79, passed away peacefully late on April 8 after a brief illness. He was surrounded by his family at Intermountain Medical Center’s Cardiac ICU unit in Murray, Utah.

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Rich was a gifted songwriter and performer beginning his music career at Olympus High School then performing professionally with his band Rich Pugh and the Rocky Mountain Express. He recorded two albums during his career and played to thousands through the west and overseas on a USO tour through the western Pacific. His favorite band he performed with was his young children in the Pugh family band in the 1970’s.

Rich’s life motto was borrowed from the Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley song, My Way. He always related to the song and used it as the closing song of every show he performed.

Rich was proud of the accomplishments of his children and grandchildren. During his retirement he regularly golfed with his grandsons and went to their baseball games. This is where he enjoyed his ability to teach them the art of colorful language.

Rich was a marathon runner and had many running buddies over the years in Salt Lake City. He completed over 30 marathons including the New York and Boston marathons. He was an avid golfer playing at Glendale and Rose Park regularly. He was able to watch the first two rounds of the 2023 Masters, his favorite event of the year.

Rich served in the Army National Guard in the early 1960’s then served a 2 ½ year LDS Mission in Germany.

Rich worked in HR for many companies during his career including FMC Mining, First Security Bank, Federal Express, Fidelity Investments, then retiring from Wells Fargo Bank.

Rich graduated with a bachelor and graduate degree from the University of Utah and was a proud Ute fan, having football and basketball season tickets for years. He was especially excited when Utah beat BYU, in ANYTHING!

Rich loved travel and recently completed a “bucket list” trip on a safari excursion with his wife Jeri and Hogle Zoo friends to Kruger National Park in South Africa and Gorongosa Park in Mozambique.

Rich is survived by his wife Jeri Neese Pugh, ex-wife Nancy Johnson, children Lori, Brian (Caroline), Tricia (Jeff), Chad (Miranda), Kaiti (Marc), Shelly (Hollis), and 15 grandchildren. Siblings Dave (Sue), Tom, Rodney (Nikki), and Merrilee (Dee).

The family would like to thank the staff at IMC Cardiac ICU for their compassionate care of Rich and sympathetic discussions with his family.

In lieu of gifts and flowers consider a donation to The Inn Between (https://tibhospice.org/ ), hospice care for those experiencing homelessness. The family has been making Christmas donations to this organization for years.

There will be no formal funeral service, at Rich’s request. Family will gather this summer for a life celebration.

Services

Services Handled By

Larkin Mortuary
260 E South Temple
Salt Lake City, UT

Life Story Info

Post Date

Apr 13, 2023

Personal Info

Age

79
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Guestbook

I am so very sorry for your loss of Rich. He was a great asset to this world. I knew him back in the 70’s at Sandy’s Station. He knew my father and we had many enjoyable visits. I still have one of his records he gave me and signed for me. My prayers are with your family during these difficult times. God bless.

RuthAnn Robins , Worland, WY, US Apr 18, 2023

I am so very sorry for your loss of Rich. He was a great asset to this world. I knew him back in the 70’s at Sandy’s Station. He knew my father and we had many enjoyable visits. I still have one of his records he gave me and signed for me. My prayers are with your family during these difficult times. God bless.

RuthAnn Robins , Worland, WY, US Apr 18, 2023

I am so very sorry for your loss of Rich. He was a great asset to this world. I knew him back in the 70’s at Sandy’s Station. He knew my father and we had many enjoyable visits. I still have one of his records he gave me and signed for me. My prayers are with your family during these difficult times. God bless.

RuthAnn Robins , Worland, WY, US Apr 18, 2023

Jeri,

So sorry to hear of Rich’s passing. He leaves so many great memories and a few not so great memories. Of course the New York Marathon trip and Rich being hit upon at the Halloween Parade. All the Sunday runs, the Big Daddy Races and the formation runs sans Rich. Who can forget the Wrestling Match at the Delta Center with Hulk Hogan (Rich thought it was fake, ha ha). The running parties were always fun especially the aforementioned Utah-North Carolina basket game watch party. We so appreciated Rich singing at our wedding and you and Rich coming to our house for Tastan and Elmira’s first Christmas in the US, ten days after they arrived. Probably none of these memories can compare to the Elk Story. So many other fun times. “Thanks For the Memories” Rich and a wonderful friendship. Bob Sperling

Bob Sperling , Salt Lake City, UT, US Apr 14, 2023

Sorry about the duplicate messages. The submit button didn’t seem to be working.

Kathy Bardsley , Washingtom, UT, US Apr 13, 2023

Hi Jeri. Bob and I just found out about Rich’s passing. We are so sorry for your loss. Rich was truly a good man and we enjoyed the times we spent with the two of you. Bob especially enjoyed running through the neighborhood scantily clad after the Utah and North Carolina basketball game. We are thinking of you at this time and wish you well.

Kathy and Bob Bardsley.

Kathy Bardsley , Washingtom, UT, US Apr 13, 2023

Hi Jeri. Bob a I just found out about Rich’s passing. We are so sorry for your loss. Rich was truly a good man and we enjoyed the times we spent with the two of you. Bob especially enjoyed running through the neighborhood scantily clad after the Utah and North Carolina basketball game. We are thinking of you at this time and wish you well.

Kathy and Bob Bardsley.

Kathy Bardsley , Washingtom, UT, US Apr 13, 2023

Hi Jeri. Bob a I just found out about Rich’s passing. We are so sorry for your loss. Rich was truly a good man and we enjoyed the times we spent with the two of you. Bob especially enjoyed running through the neighborhood scantily clad after the Utah and North Carolina basketball game. We are thinking of you at this time and wish you well.

Kathy and Bob Bardsley.

Kathy Bardsley , Washingtom, UT, US Apr 13, 2023

Hi Jeri. Bob a I just found out about Rich’s passing. We are so sorry for your loss. Rich was truly a good man and we enjoyed the times we spent with the two of you. Bob especially enjoyed running through the neighborhood scantily clad after the Utah and North Carolina basketball game. We are thinking of you at this time and wish you well.

Kathy and Bob Bardsley.

Kathy Bardsley , Washingtom, UT, US Apr 13, 2023

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