Stephen E. Rickson, 78, of Tucson, AZ left this earthly life on August 25, 2020 to begin his eternal life in Heaven. We have no doubt he was received with open arms! He is survived by his loving wife, Karen (Meiwes) Rickson; his stepchildren, Phillip Friskel, Tucson, AZ, Jessica (Jacob) Poole of Marana, AZ and Mark (Jen) Friskel, Jr. of Fairchild AFB, Spokane, WA; and his grandchildren who loved their Papa Steve and were the delight of his life, Aiden, Kaitlyn, Branden, Madelyn, Lauren and Bronson Poole and Grayson and Harper Friskel. He was looking forward to meeting his new Friskel grandchild in 2021. He also leaves behind his siblings Fred (Robin) Rickson of Scottsdale, AZ and Missy Rickson of Longmont, CO who lovingly called him Tim, a special childhood nickname.\n\nSteve was born February 21, 1942 in Manhattan, KS to Ed & Lucia Rickson. The family moved to Tucson in 1960 and Steve considered the desert his true home. He earned a B.A. in Political Science from the U of A in 1965 and was a lifelong Wildcat fan. In 1966 he entered active duty service in the Navy and served as a radioman on the U.S.S. Bennington in the Tonkin Gulf. He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal and the Vietnam Service Medal with 2 bronze stars. He was honorably discharged in 1968.\n\nSteve's faith and his family were the most important things in his life. He was a kind, gentle and loving person, and cared deeply about helping those less fortunate. He was an activist and advocate for peace and justice and was involved in many social justice groups. Steve was spiritual and contemplative and spent many quiet hours reading the works of people he considered to be his spiritual mentors. He was always journeying toward deeper union with God. \n\nSteve lived a full life. He loved sports, especially baseball, and loved watching the D-backs and the Little League World Series. He loved learning and encouraged it in others. He was a poet who never stopped honing his craft. His faith journey led him to the Catholic seminary and he was ordained in 1990. He was a Catholic priest from 1990 to 1995, serving at Immaculate Conception Parish in Douglas, AZ and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Tucson, AZ. His call to leave the priesthood led him to become a hospice chaplain. He felt honored to help people transition from this life to the next. He brought peace and comfort to countless families. \n\nSteve felt strongly about being responsible and respectful of others in the current times. We are honoring him by having his memorial service at a later date when all who wish to remember him may do so safely. Private family services were held on August 29, 2020. In lieu of flowers please pray for those who won't have their needs met today. If you would like to make a donation in memory of Steve, choosing a charity that fights poverty and injustice in the world would be a great way to honor him.\n\nSteve's final journal entry was: "Faith sustains us - and love. We will get beyond this to a better life. In the meantime we have this (hard) chance to grow together with God."\n\nWe miss you, Steve, but also know we will be together in the end!