Bart Rickenbaugh

Our classmate, Bart Rickenbaugh, passed away on March 24, 2002.  The following is excerpted from The Denver Post:

Bart Rickenbaugh managed to achieve something in 35 years that most people never manage in a full life span: He lived his dreams.

A four-year rugby player at Dartmouth, Rickenbaugh also was a former saddle bronc rider with the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. He loved to play hockey, hunt, ski, run and play racquetball. He moved from Denver to Bozeman in 2000.   ‘You go through life and you only meet a few good folks,’ said Russ McElyea, who worked with Rickenbaugh in the law firm of Moore, O’Connell & Refling. ‘Bart was one of them. … We’re all poorer for his absence.’

Rickenbaugh spent part of his youth on his family’s ranch in Gunnison, CO where he picked up the skills that let him compete in rodeos as a saddle-bronc rider.

In his younger years, Rickenbaugh attended Graland Country Day School in Denver and Phillips Andover Academy in Massachusetts. He earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Dartmouth College in 1988 and a law degree from the University of Denver in 1994.

Bart Rickenbaugh is survived by his wife, Lisa; and children Sam, and Lila; sisters Anne Rickenbaugh, and Katherine Rich.

Classmate John Harris (a.k.a. “Fatty”) writes:

I have too many favorite Bart memories to single out just one.  When I start thinking about him a flood of memories hit me.

Sitting at the dinner table in our little house in Cherry Creek (we were Pat Brophy’s tenants) eating our pork chops, green beans and stove top stuffing – convinced that we were living better than any two other guys anywhere in America.

Making fun of Bart for being a Bronco Riding cowboy that drove a Subaru wagon.

While telling a joke in a bar in San Francisco I inadvertently hit him in the mouth with a beer bottle and chipped his front tooth.  After he got that fixed he promptly broke both his front teeth again in NYC just before Ross Ampel’s wedding while trying to run down the sidewalk.

Our continual quest for the best chicken fried steak in every corner of Colorado.

His overwhelming and blind loyalty to his friends.  He always made everything better and could always be counted on to make it when you needed him.

I miss him.


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