H.W. Wallace Cremation & Burial Centre

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James Murray "Sugarplum" Richardson (JR)

October 8, 1942 - June 3, 2022


Back in ‘42, JR rolled off the assembly line in North Vancouver. The youngest of four children, survived by his sister Norma Cunningham and predeceased by his brothers Bill, Hugh and Bud, JR was the baby of the family. His parents Art and Lilian Richardson were faced with the tallest of their children, and JR would have us all believe he had the best engine. Moving to Victoria for his high school years, always wanting himself and his cars to look sharp, he tinkered with chassis, souped up engines, and added fancy flourishes to the paint job. He began his working life with Universal Sheet Metal and eventually his friends encouraged him to pursue training as an industrial arts teacher thru a program at BCIT. In 1973, with his wife Kathy and his daughter Laura (Dan Norman), he moved to Chilliwack and began a long teaching career in the shops at Rosedale Junior Secondary School. A flamboyant teacher, he wrestled with the students, designed projects for them to build which raised eyebrows amongst administrators, cementing his reputation as “big burly Jim, with a soft heart”. He was a patient teacher, and he always went the extra mile to provide his students with opportunities to build beautiful projects that they could take pride in. He also taught in the shops at Chilliwack Middle School and retired from teaching in 1999. Outside of work, he also built and repaired things in his own time and in his own way. Home renovations, car improvements, paint jobs; JR always had a major project on the go and took sweet pride when he always completed the project his friends were sure would never work. On his own since 2003, he worked on his house and cars, even learning to sew so he could custom design window treatments. Innovative is a generous way to describe his approach to building, but although sometimes unconventional, everything he made was made to last. Since 1998, he was a proud “Papa” to his grandchildren Jacob and Quin, and made many trips to the island to visit them, as well as often welcoming them into his Cultus Lake home. He loved driving around, stopping at the “bullshit café” to drink coffee and argue with his friends. To the very end, he continued to tinker, completing body work on his HHR, polishing his mustang or tending to his kitchen. Even though a fine automobile eventually wears out, the memories of the ride will live on. Those family and friends who rode along with Jim will never forget the ride. Jim will be warmly remembered by all of his nieces, nephews and their children. His family want to thank his many Cultus Lake friends who watched out for him in recent years. Thanks go out to the Chartwell Malaspina staff for taking the time to compassionately care for him while at the same time appreciating his quirks, sense of humour, and his many life stories.

To share a story, drop by a gathering of friends and family at 332 Balsam Street, Cultus Lake on July 3 from 1-3 pm.


Send a condolence, light a candle and/or share a memory, click "Send Condolence". Once your message has been approved by the moderator it will be posted to the website.

From: H.W. Wallace Cremation & Burial Centre

H.W. Wallace Cremation & Burial Centre staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Brenda Young
Relation: Family

Laura, Dan, Jacob and Quin, I am so sorry for your loss. I always enjoyed the banter JR was so skilled at, never at a loss for a comeback. His gruff exterior was never a match for his love for his family. Al and I were lucky to spend a few of his birthdays together and share stories and cake. I can’t wait to hear how he got the nickname Sugarplum!!
We love you all and are sending lots of love your way.

From: Shauna LaGrange
Relation: Uncle

RIP Uncle Jim. You will be greatly missed. 💔❤

From: Barbara MacGregor
Relation: Brother-in-law

Even though we did not see you much recently, you were a big part of our live and we loved you💔

From: Helen Milliken
Relation: Fellow teacher and long time friend

The world has lost a gentle soul who had a heart as big as he was tall. On a bright night, look up and see that the heavens have gained another star. Rest in peace, my friend. My deepest sympathies to Jim’s family.

From: Jeff Glen
Relation: Student

I had JR as a teacher throughout middle school and he was awesome. A colourful educator who didn’t mind getting his hands dirty in the shop working us through different projects and tinkerings. After 25 years I still remember his classes fondly.

From: Teka Birch-Douglas
Relation: Student

I had JR as a metal shop teacher in Chilliwack Jr. Jr was a Special teacher to me he always made me feel like I was very special and I could do anything I put my mind to. This year I passed down the Ring I made in metal shop to my daughter Semiya the exact thing j told Jr I was going to do. I want to send my deepest condolences and love to the family. Thank you for sharing such a Amazing person with a heart of gold with so many Students that I’m sure have many memories. Rest in Peace JR love and prayers are with you 🙏 ❤ 🙏

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