Cover photo for Richard Alan Sparks's Obituary
1963 Richard 2024

Richard Alan Sparks

April 20, 1963 — May 29, 2024

Hotchkiss, Colorado

Richard (Rick) Alan Sparks was born on April 20, 1963 to Daisy Neal Sparks in Delta, CO. Rick spent most of his childhood with his brother Jerry in Paonia and had his fondest childhood memories helping his Grandpa Walter Neal, run the projectors at the Paonia walk-in and drive-in theaters, mowing lawns, hunting, fishing, and spending Sundays visiting his grandpas friends. Being orphaned at a young age, Rick also has very fond memories of living with the Sandidge family who remain an important part of his life.

At the same drive-in theater where Rick lived and worked with his Grandpa, Rick met his wife Leslie. Rick and Leslie were married March 21, 1984 in Moab, UT and were able to renew their vows in celebration of their 40th anniversary this year. Rick and Leslie had their first son Ricky, in Colorado before moving to Virgina where they had 2 more sons, Mikel and Ryan. While in Virginia Rick worked for various ship building and repair companies where he was a welder working on many Navy ships where he excelled at his trade.

In 1992 Rick and Leslie with their 3 sons moved back to Colorado where Rick wanted his boys to experience the mountains and small town living that he loved so much. With Ricks entrepreneurial spirit he was self-employed doing welding and fabrication for the remainder of his career.

Ricks 3 sons were his pride and joy. He taught them to fish, hunt, coached them in baseball, and was always their biggest cheerleader no matter what they were doing. As a family countless hours were spent in the mountains 4-wheelin and fishing, at motorcycle races, hunting, and on baseball fields across the nation.

All 3 three sons eventually married, and Rick and Leslie gained 3 daughters-in-law, Brandy, Mackenzie, and Michelle that they both love dearly and who have become an irreplaceable part of our family. From those unions they gained 7 grand children and becoming a Pop-pops gave Rick insurmountable joy. As a family of 15 the adventures only got better and Rick loved nothing more than spending time with all of them and they with him.

Rick’s biggest attribute was his ability to make people feel special and the fact that if he knew you he loved you. Rick had many close and valued relationships and the people that he loved knew how much he loved them.

The last words that Rick spoke on this earth were, “I love my wife and I love my family”. He didn’t need to say it because we all knew it.

Rick is survived by his loving wife Leslie Sparks (Hotchkiss), his children and grandchildren Ricky, Brandy, Elly, and Hunter (Rockport, TX), Mikel, Mackenzie, Cooper, Barrett, and Wyatt (Hotchkiss), Ryan, Michelle, Addison, and Avery (Grand Junction). His sister-in-law and nieces and nephews Stacie Smith, Dustin Bartlett, Mila Juarez, Tyeson Juarez, and Dallas Hostetler all of Hotchkiss and Cody (Ashley) and Casey Bartlett (Albuquerque). His mother-in-law Gail Robinson (Delta). His brother along with his nephews Jerry (Lori) Sparks, Chris (Shannon) and Henry Sparks, Cody (Mercedes), Jacob and Paisley Sparks all of Canon City. Sister-in-love Karen Sandidge (Nelda Dettwiler) of Colorado Springs and his cousin Val (Steve) O’ Connell (Hotchkiss,) and many other cousins, family members, and special friends.

Rick was preceded in death by his mother Daisy Sparks, grandparents Walter and Alma Neal, and his nephew Tony Sparks.

Services will be held June 10th at 10 am at Ranch Haven 42736 D Rd Crawford, Colorado with a gathering afterwards at Heritage Hall in Hotchkiss.

Arrangements are under the care and direction of Taylor Funeral Service. View the internet obituary and sign the online guest registry at

In lieu of flowers a scholarship account is being set up at Bank of Colorado in Hotchkiss that will provide a yearly scholarship to a graduating student at the North Fork High School who was a baseball player.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Recorded Service

Monday, June 10, 2024

10:00 - 11:30 am (Mountain time)


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