Craig Richlen


Craig Richlen, 62, father, accountant, and all around superhero was ferried to Valhalla on Monday, Aug. 18, 2014, from his home in Lockhart, Texas. While the coroner ruled his death as complications related to cardiovascular disease, Craig would prefer that his death be memorialized as the loss of an epic battle against the costumed criminals of this world complete with 1960″s

Batman sound effects and giant, Harryhausen-esque monsters. To say he was larger than life is the understatement of the year.

Craig was involved in martial arts his entire life and found himself the happiest with a class full of tiny white belts to play with although he would argue that kicking and throwing black belts was his favorite.

He loved traveling with his family (his favorite place on earth was Disneyland) and puttering about the comic book store with his two sons. Craig was a truly devoted husband who married his wife, Pamela Stewart-Richlen, after a whirlwind romance that would last them 33 blissful years. She was the love of his life and his very best friend.

He was a perfect father, not only to his three children Bonnie Stewart-Richlen, Tyler Stewart-Richlen (Jolene Stewart-Richlen), and Trevor Stewart-Richlen, but also to any child in need of a father figure in their lives. He considered Cash Monroe and Samuel Bussa to be his two adopted sons and would repeatedly refer to them as such until the end of his life.

Craig is survived by his three biological children, his precious wife, and the panoply of furry babies that he spent his evenings scratching and spoiling.

There will be a private memorial at the family ranch, and in lieu of flower or gifts we ask that you look at your own father, hug him, and really appreciate just how wonderful it is to be loved by someone so amazing.

To view and sign the guestbook, visit



  1. Shirley DuBoise 27 August, 2014 at 03:42 Reply

    Pam, I am so sorry for the loss that your family has suffered. If I can do anything for you, please let me know.

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 17:54 Reply

      Hi, Shirley – I’m so sort it’s taken me so long to respond, I didn’t know this was here. Thank you for your offer of support. I really appreciate it! Luckily, my kiddos are all close by in Austin and we get to gather often. They’re a life saver and are so much like their dad. This hit us all so unexpectedly and has been brutal. But, with wonderful friends and family, we’re plugging along. I’m a grandma and that’s just what we all needed. My grandson is adorable and so happy! I’m blessed! Thank you so much for your offer of support! I hope you and your family are doing well. Sincerely, Pam

  2. Lindsey 27 August, 2014 at 16:04 Reply

    I am so sorry for the loss of a wonderful, smiley (as I always saw a smile on his face) and all around happy man. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:00 Reply

      Thank you, Lindsey. He kept us all going with his jokes and wonderful sense of humor. His kiddos have that and are a joy to be around. Thank you for your support.

  3. Dana Koch 27 August, 2014 at 17:17 Reply

    Hello Pam and Family,

    Getting to know you and Craig through the Pearl family connection has been a bright spot in my life. When working at TPWD, and passing him in the halls was a continued bright spot. A memory: his division at TPWD bought a ‘green’ cart to transport staff between Building D and HQ. Self powered by one or two peddling, he took me for a ride. Just a small thing – knowing we were all so busy – he took time out to give me the experience.

    If I can help in any way, please call or email. *hugs all around* Dana

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:04 Reply

      Hi, Dana- This was a nice surprise to find you here. Thank you for your memories, your offer of support and the hugs! Always appreciated! I hope you and your family are well! Hugs right back at ya!

  4. Gail and Jerry Sales 27 August, 2014 at 18:24 Reply

    Pam, we are so sorry to hear this news. We send our love and condolences to you and the children.

  5. Heather Braun 27 August, 2014 at 20:13 Reply

    Sending hugs from Minnesota, I am so sorry. Uncle Craig was always fun to be around, full of jokes and smiles.

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:08 Reply

      Hi, Heather! Thank you so much for the sweet note and fun memories. He left a big hole of jokes and laughter, but the kiddos are doing their best to fill it up. I love you, Sweetie!

  6. Kim Dudish 28 August, 2014 at 01:32 Reply

    I worked with Craig for ten years, yet it will be his kindness and his devotion to his family that I will remember the most about him. My sincere condolences.

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:12 Reply

      Thank you, Kim. He was an amazing husband and father! I was blessed to have him for 33 yrs. Definitely, not long enough, but still blessed. I’m glad he got to work with you. It sounds like he was better for it. Thank you so much.

  7. Kevin Todd 28 August, 2014 at 14:58 Reply

    My condolences to the family. Craig will be missed at TPWD. Best wishes to all of you as you move forward.

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:15 Reply

      Thank you, Kevin. I loved the bench and tree you all put up for him. That was so sweet and showed such love and concern for him and us- his family. Thank you so much for, from the bottom of our hearts, your friendship and support!

  8. Dario Alvarez 28 August, 2014 at 16:25 Reply

    Richlen Family,

    My sincerest condolences, and best wishes during this struggling time of grief and loss. I met Craig about 5 years ago in judo class. Craig was one of our first students, and from the onset of his path with Kokoro Judo, he was a force to be reckoned with. Not only because he was a big guy, but because his personality was engulfing. He had the personality that attracted people and made you feel good about yourself when you were around him. We in his Kokoro family have each shared fond memories of Craig and his contribution to the group, but I think his biggest contribution to us all was his example of never quitting and being positive regardless of the circumstance. He would always congratulate you or encourage you as you trained with him, and his don’t quit attitude was contagious. I will personally miss him and am grateful for having had the chance to get to know him even a little. Thank you for sharing him with us, and may you find peace in the memories you made with him.


    Dario Alvarez

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:20 Reply

      Thank you, Dario, for the kind memories and words of support! We are working on the memorial tapes-long story short- the one of us that’s in charge, just had my first grand baby and is a wee bit busy. We’ll send you a copy as soon as they’re completed. I Thank You From the Bottom of Our Hearts for your sweet memories and words of support. He had so much fun with y’all, that he griped terribly if I made him miss a class! I hope you and your family are well and happy!

  9. Janice Elledge 28 August, 2014 at 16:27 Reply

    Before my retirement from TPWD last year, I enjoyed working with Craig for many years. I shall miss running into him at HEB. May you find comfort in knowing so many care. Sending condolences to his family.

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:22 Reply

      Thank you, Janice, for your kind words and friendship with Craig! I sincerely, appreciate your sweet words of support! I hope you’re enjoying your retirement!

  10. Wanda 28 August, 2014 at 20:18 Reply

    Craig was a great man and story teller. When he laughed you couldn’t help but laugh with him. Our family has a large space left by his passing, but know we’ll all be together again. We love and miss you Craig♡

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:26 Reply

      HI, Wanda! All those Richlen boys could tell stories and jokes and have us in tears, laughing so hard! I was blessed he was mine. Our kids are good at telling stories and jokes, just like their dad! Thank you for your love and support! I miss you! I hope all’s week with you and Brent and all! I love you all!

  11. Lynne 10 September, 2014 at 20:21 Reply

    Dearest Pam, Bonnie, Trevor and Tyler,
    Craig was, indeed, a superhero! His love for each of you was a gift that, fortunately, you cherished, built on, grew on and now will carry on throughout your wonderful lives. I will pray that you find strength in the terrific memories that you have and hold dear to your hearts. Craig was one of a kind!
    My love always,
    Lynne and the Guys

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:29 Reply

      Hi, Lynnie! Thank you so much for the sweet words of support and for always being there, no matter what happens or when it happens. You are such a treasured friend! I love you and owe you grand-baby pictures!! I love you all so much!!

  12. Martin and Darla Martin 12 November, 2014 at 21:23 Reply

    Pam, We are so sorry to hear about Craig. Please know that we are praying for you and your family. Craig had a huge positive impact on our lives and on Martial Arts in Montana. I will call if I can track down a phone number for you, if not now you have my email address, please email your phone number and we will call. Please give Bonnie, Tyler, and Trevor our condolences.

    Again what a terrific man, instructor, mentor, friend and family he has been to us. If we can do anything at all please let us know.
    Love Martin and Darla

    • Pam 17 February, 2016 at 18:31 Reply

      I’m so sorry I never saw these messages until recently! I love you all and hope to get some of your written memories of Craig and y’all’s early years in Montana! I’ll be in touch, I promise!! i love you all and miss you!!

  13. Barbara Copland 12 October, 2016 at 23:32 Reply

    I hope you are still reading these notes for I just saw this notice that Craig passed. I am so sorry Pam. It has been a long time since we have spoken but I really do think of you all the time. An unexpected death is the worse. I don’t know if you remember my son David…he was 41 when he drowned in a river here in Portola, Ca. It has been so hard, I just know what you are enduring. I have missed you forever, those fun days in Santa Rosa are locked in my mind. Take care my friend. Love Barbara

    • Pam 21 February, 2017 at 21:38 Reply

      Hi, Barbara!! My daughter just told me you’d been on here! I miss you and have been trying to get in touch with you!! Where are you living now? Or get me an email address. I’m so sorry about David! Oh my goodness, we should never lose a child! And he was so sweet! Here’s my email- !!!

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