Richard Thomas Young

Richard Thomas Young, 77, passed away on December 15, 2022 at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany due to complications from Parkinson’s Disease.

Richard was born on August 23, 1945 in the small English town of Royal Wootton Bassett to the late Amy and William Young. In 1946, at seven months, Richard and his mother boarded the Queen Elizabeth to join his father William for a life in America. The family settled in the Bronx, New York and soon Richard had a little brother, William “Bill” Young who preceded him in death.

Richard grew up on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, in the shadow of the Bronx Zoo, where his mother worked and not far from the Metropolitan Museum of Art where his father worked as a security guard after he was discharged from the U.S. Army.

Richard attended Mount St. Michael High School and went on to earn a Bachelor’s of Science degree in pharmacy from Fordham University, both in the Bronx, New York. He made life-long friends through his formative years, particularly a group called “Tremain,” who he met through a house plan at City College of New York.

In 1966, he married Jane Czarnecki and together, they had two children, Christian and Jennifer, whom they raised in Woodstock, New York. Their home was also a welcoming space for their extended families and countless friends through the 27 years that they were together.

His children were his pride and joy. He used Shakespeare’s words “though she be but little she is fierce,” to describe his daughter Jennifer and she was his fiercest protector. She shared his love of books, chocolate, pizza, and NYC. He loved her gentle heart and brave spirit, which he told her reminded him of his own mother.

Richard marveled at how his son Christian, even as a toddler, could talk to anyone, anywhere about anything. Richard taught his son through example to be a friend to anyone who needs one. When Christian married his wife Kris Sanchez and they had two little girls, no one was a greater champion and cheerleader. He closed the 3,000-mile gap between New York and California through frequent visits, phone calls and his signature postcards with silly doodles for his granddaughters. His granddaughter Isabel shared his love of birds and nature. He and his younger granddaughter Carmen shared a birthday and a quirky sense of humor.

Richard was a pharmacist by training but worked as a Senior Narcotics Investigator with the Bureau of Controlled Substances under the New York State Department of Health. It was work that took him undercover to bring down a ring of dozens of doctors who used vulnerable people suffering from addiction to bilk the Medicaid system for millions of dollars. He was also tasked with investigating the overprescribing and diversion of controlled substances by healthcare professionals, many of whom were suffering from addiction. It was a burden he knew first-hand. After Richard himself was in recovery, he used his personal experience to guide many of these pharmacists to sobriety and even helped some regain their state licenses. He was a valued member of the Pharmacist Recovery Network and the Professional Assistance Program, which assists professionals who have substance abuse problems, but who have not harmed patients or clients. Several people shared with Richard’s family that he saved not just their careers, but their lives.

After retirement, Richard enjoyed splitting his time between New York and Royal Wootton Bassett where his mother lived out her life and where he had many beloved cousins, aunts, and uncles. He also cherished his annual trip into the Canadian wilderness with some of his dearest friends where he would fish, read, and enjoy the camaraderie.

In 2010 he married Sandy Fracalossi and they joined their two families for some happy and lively years. Richard seemed most at peace when reading, kayaking, working on projects or, as he would say, “puttering” in their beautiful gardens where roses were his favorite.

Richard never claimed to be perfect, but he never stopped seeking redemption for himself and helping others to achieve the same. He loved his family and friends with his whole heart and being. He will be loved and missed forever.

Richard is survived by his wife Sandy Young, his daughter Jennifer Young, his son Christian Young, daughter-in-law Kris, granddaughters Isabel and Carmen Young, Emma and Sophia Eagan, and grandson Cameron Filkins, stepdaughter Kalyn Eagan and her husband Paul and stepdaughter Erin Filkins and her husband Brian.
His children are planning a memorial service for Saturday, January 7th in Woodstock, NY.

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