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Rebecca Richman ’14

November 29, 2019, in Seattle, Washington, after being struck by a car.

Rebecca roared into this world in the late hours of February 11, 1991, in Santa Monica, California. She arrived 31 minutes after the doctor left the hospital, predicting that it would be eight more hours before she would be born, and was delivered by her father and two nurses.

Rebecca’s bold entry into the world symbolized her attitude toward life. The daughter of two lawyers, she uttered her first word at 13 months, started speaking quickly thereafter and was a voracious reader. She attended the Mirman School and Archer School for Girls in Los Angeles before graduating from Reed.

She wrote her thesis, “That’s Crazy Talk: Trajectories of Schizophrenia and Political Psychiatry in China,” advised by Professors Charlene Makley [anthropology] and Courtney Handman ’98 [anthropology].

“Rebecca was an extraordinarily kind and gentle person who wanted to make a difference in the world,” Prof. Makley said. “She had remarkable persistence and self-confidence.”

Prof. Handman remembered Rebecca as “a very earnest student with a biting sense of humor. She was often quiet in classes but would occasionally speak up with a really challenging comment that would get the whole class talking, her way of making some in-class mischief. She worked hard to finish her thesis, and I was glad to work with her on it.”

After college, Rebecca attended Lewis and Clark Law School, where she graduated with a Juris Doctor in May 2019. Just before Rebecca’s life ended, she passed the bar exam and became a lawyer. At the time of her passing, Rebecca was practicing law in Fairbanks, Alaska, where she was a deputy attorney for the City of Fairbanks and also worked for the Alaska Legal Services Corporation (Partnering for Native Health Medical-Legal Partnership Project), where she assisted Native Americans.

Rebecca was not the most athletic person in the world. She did achieve two brown belts in the martial arts, however. Rather, her passions were cooking and baking. After graduating from Reed and before admitting that she was destined to become a lawyer, Rebecca became a professional chef and loved to bake for family and friends.

She was preceded in death by her mother, Linda. Rebecca left this world at the same time as her brother Michael, in a tragic incident in Seattle, Washington. She is survived by her father, Steve, who was also injured in the incident in Seattle.

Rebecca enjoyed her years at Reed. It is hoped that her friends will remember her as they travel the road of life.

Appeared in Reed magazine: June 2020

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