Rick Merle of Boise, a former Blackfoot resident, passed away peacefully at home July 24, 2012 in the arms of his daughter after a long battle with cancer.
He was born Oct. 14, 1950 in The Bronx, New York, the oldest child of Frank and Audrey Merle. He grew up on the East Coast, graduating from Rumson Fairhaven High School in Rumson, New Jersey.
He moved to Manhattan, Kansas, attending Kansas State University where he met and married Vickie Rader. They then moved to Blackfoot, where he began a long and storied career as a master of all things mechanical.
Several years after the birth of their daughter, Melissa, Rick and Vickie divorced, and years later Rick, seeking new adventures relocated to Boise where he remained until his passing.
Rick had many passions in life. He was always fascinated by both real and model trains, and was involved in various model railroading clubs throughout his life, as well as working on real locomotives at Motive Power during the last years of his career. Rick also loved and shared his life with many Russian Wolfhounds (Borzoi), with whom he spent many a day exploring and watching the trains go by. He was a lifelong devotee of the Ford brand and loved his Mustangs, his classic Galaxie, and his ancient Econoline van, all of which he maintained meticulously. Rick was also a huge fan of NASCAR, as well as good old Rock and Roll, and he played Lynyrd Skynyrd loud and proud.
Rick is survived by his daughter, Melissa (Rob) Pruss, Epping of North Dakota; grandchildren Clayton and Kaci; parents Frank and Audrey Merle, Blackfoot; brothers Les (Vickie) Merle, Boise, and Bob (Roxanne) Merle, Pocatello, and sisters Lindsay Serna, Roy, Utah, and Tracy (Brad) Hasty, Richland, Wash.
Per his wishes, Rick was cremated and requested that no services be held.
The family wishes to thank the various health and hospice care providers for their kind and caring assistance, as well as the many friends that brought so much joy to Rick in his life. Please keep him in your heart for a while.