On Monday, April 13, 2020, Richard Allen (Rick) Filson, age 61, of Katy, Texas was surrounded by his loving family members when he left this earth for his heavenly home after a courageous battle with cancer.
Rick was born on December 5, 1958 in Conneaut, OH to the late Homer E. and Caroline (Carole) M. Filson. He graduated from Titusville High School in 1976 and went on to attend The University of Pittsburgh, graduating in 1980 with a Bachelor of Science Degree. After completing his degree, Rick moved to Houston, Texas where he began a successful career in business that included working for Lone Star Wine Company, Frito Lay, Bob’s Texas Style Chips, Borden’s and Vic’s Gourmet Popping Corn.
In 1998, Rick left the business world to pursue his ultimate passion and to forever make a difference by obtaining his Texas Teacher Certification from the University of Houston-Downtown. In his own words “My career ambitions changed and evolved when I began to understand the importance and meaning of being a parent. As a parent you recognize that you are the first line of defense in securing for your child the tools necessary to become successful contributors to the world. My passion for the success of my children transformed into that passion that drives me every single day as a teacher. We must devote ourselves and that passion to making all students positive contributors to this world.” It was his motto to “Make a difference each and every day.”
Rick began his teaching career in 1998 as one of the opening teachers of the Alief Elsik Ninth Grade Center. Among his many accomplishments there was being selected Teacher of the Year, chosen by the Leadership Team to participate in “Capturing Kids’ Hearts” and “Leading the Way”. He was also a five-time recipient of the “Simply the Best” award. Rick subsequently continued his career in education at James E. Taylor High School in Katy, Texas where he was awarded Teacher of the Year in 2015. It was his honor to be a teacher representative for the “Best Buddies” program, UIL Social Studies Sponsor and teacher mentor for the “Community in Schools” program. He was deeply touched when he was often chosen by the students as “Pacesetter Teacher of the Week”, favorite teacher for “Teacher Appreciation Night” for all athletic sports, as well as “Spotlight Teacher” and Senior Fashion Extravaganza Co-MC.
He loved coaching sports and held various coaching positions over a 35-year span. This included coaching soccer coach for both girls’ high school and boys’ middle school as well as boys’ Division I and boys’ youth soccer. In addition, he coached Little League girls’ softball and Little League boys’ baseball. Rick was a devoted Dad to his daughter’s Alief Hastings High School Drill Team. His children fondly remember his involvement as both a coach and proud father of their accomplishments in life.
Rick is survived by his beloved wife of almost 41 years, Pamela Filson of Katy, Texas; his loving children Melissa Benitoa (Andy) of Allen, Texas, Richard Filson of Katy, Texas and Jeffrey Filson of Katy, Texas; his grandchildren whom he loved so dearly and was known as “Ampy” to them: Taylor Filson, Braden Jones, Jackson and Bella Benitoa. He is also survived by siblings Teresa Snyder, Judy (Bob) Kitchen, Homer Filson and David (Deb) Filson as well as those he considered his siblings: Jim Sye, Cathy Jordan, Tracey (Mike) McClung and one very special mother-in-law he called mom, Shirley Sye.
Rick was tremendously humbled and honored by the enormous amount of support he and his family have received from friends, colleagues, parents and students (past and current) during this journey. The family cannot begin to thank everyone enough for the strength their support has and continues to provide. He will be deeply missed by his family and everyone whose lives he touched.
A memorial service will be held at a later date to be announced. If desired, memorial contributions may be made online at Gofundme.com “Team Filson Memorial Fund” to establish a scholarship program in honor of him.
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