Sunday, July 14, 2024

Richard Olson, 78

| June 19, 2024 1:00 AM

Richard Arthur Olson, 78, passed away Friday, May 31, 2024, peacefully at his home in Mesa, Ariz. 

Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, June 27, 2024, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Sandpoint, Idaho, with Bishop Nathan Wittman conducting. Military Honors will follow at Pinecrest Cemetery.

He was born Aug. 19, 1945, in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, to Arthur and Helen Olson. As a teenager, he joined the Army. 

Richard married Charlotte Williams on Feb. 1, 1969, in Hawaii while he was serving in Vietnam. They gained a daughter, Josephine a few short years later. 

Richard being prone to temper tantrums, left the Army after 14 years, and transferred to the Navy, where he served for 10 more years. He was the second-oldest person to complete boot camp in Navy history. 

While in the Army, he served three years in Vietnam and was awarded three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star, and five presidential citations. Richard retired from the military in 1989 and moved back to Sandpoint where he drove long haul trucks and owned a pig farm. 

Richard was a member of the LDS Church, and lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion, and Eagles Lodge. He enjoyed fixing and selling old cars, camping, and traveling. He also loved to spend time with his grandchildren and taught them how to drive.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Charlotte Olson; his daughter, Josephine Ranes; granddaughters, Haleigh and Ami; grandsons, Patrick, Keith, and Jamin; a great-grandson Bailey; a sister Margie (Bob) Matlock; and sister Margaret (Brian) Meckle. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews, and friends.

Richard was preceded in death by his parents; brother Robert; two sisters Sylvia and Norma; his niece Andrea; and Lex. 

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the VFW 2453 in Sandpoint, Idaho, or to the Mormon Missionaries in your area. 

Lakeview Funeral Home in Sandpoint is handling the arrangements. Please visit Richard’s online memorial at and sign his guest book.