Richard Ralph Kauffman, 76, passed away at home Friday, May 15, 2020. He leaves behind his loving wife, Linda Ann Kauffman, née King, with whom he would have celebrated 43 years marriage this September, and his son, Richard Russell Kauffman, 33.
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Born October 27, 1943, Richard was the son of the late Ralph D. Kaufman and Betty M. Kaufman, née Geible. He is survived by his sister, Carol Jean (Kaufman) Custer and brothers, Donald Kaufman and Scott Kaufman.
Richard was known for his laugh and sense of humor. A kind and amiable person, he’d tell jokes and engage in conversation with almost anyone. He also had a passion for politics and remained constantly engaged in current events via Twitter, which in recent years he amassed a large following.
A prolific athlete in his youth, Richard graduated from Oley Valley High School in 1961 as a two-time member of the Reading Eagle All-Berks Conference Basketball Team, and an All-Berks Goalie for the Oley Valley High School Soccer team, in which he allowed only one goal in their 1960 championship season.
At age 19, he was asked to try out with the Philadelphia Phillies and was offered a minor league contract, however he chose to first complete his college education.
Awarded an athletic scholarship to Albright College, he played basketball and baseball while pursuing a degree in Mathematics. Hall of Fame Albright basketball coach Will Ranken once called him, “the smartest man he’s ever coached.” As a captain of the basketball team, Richard led the Lions to their first 20-win season in team history, a 1965 MAC Northern Division championship and a berth in the 1965 NCAA Tournament.
In 2010, Albright College inducted Richard into the Albright Athletics Hall of Fame.
After college, his dream of being a Phillies pitcher was thwarted by the Vietnam conflict upon receiving his draft notice, rather choosing to enlist in the U.S. Army where he served in Pakistan as a barograph operator collecting enemy intelligence.
He is best known in Berks County as a generational talent in golf. In 1971, he bested a field of 238 players in the Sinking Spring Fire Company Golf Championship with a six-under-par round of 63. He played, and won, in many southeast Pennsylvania tournaments as a member of the Reading County Club. With partner, Don Sowers, they won the first two Hawley Quier Memorial Tournaments at Moselem Springs and teamed up to win the Berks County Golf Association Better Ball of Partners in 1974. While in the service, Richard won the Pakistani Open, which had its inaugural tournament in 1967.
Richard worked at CNA Insurance as an Internal Auditor and at Sovereign Bank before retiring in 2012.
Donations in Richard’s memory can be made to the Pennside Presbyterian Church, 253 N. 25th Street, Reading, Pa. 19606. A Celebration of Life will be held at a future date. For online condolences please visit www.LutzFuneralHome.com