Richard (Ricky) Paul Martin passed away unexpectedly from natural causes on New Year’s Day, January 1, 2021. Ricky was born during a summer storm on July 19, 1962 in Breckenridge, MN to Leonard Martin and Dorothy (Boock Nunn) Martin. Ricky lived in Wahpeton, Detroit Lakes, LaMoure and rural Frazee. He attended school in Frazee, MN and received an Auto Mechanics degree from the Detroit lakes Vocational school. Ricky was a talented and gifted mechanic, living up to his initials of RPM. He worked as a mechanic at many area auto repair shops as well as working on vehicles for friends and family. From the time he was three years old he began to take apart any machine, engine or auto part. As he got older he learned how to put things back together but often felt that many of the parts were unnecessary or “extra.”
Ricky is perhaps best known for his ability to keep demolition derby cars running until the bitter end. He drove in area competitions but he mostly preferred being in the pit crew. Often a one-man pit crew, Ricky, along with the rest of the team, took all the trophies there were to be won. The derby teams were a force on the regional fair and community celebration circuit.
Along with his love for mechanics Ricky loved traveling with the family carnival, The Len Martin Shows. He was barely walking his first summer on the carnival, but he grew into participating with every aspect of carnival life at a vey young age. Over the years the carnival became the Border State Shows and finally Pat-Rick’s Playway. Following the sale of the family carnival, Ricky traveled with the Midway of Fun Shows with his last season being in 1981.
Ricky enjoyed music and loved to sing. He had a beautiful voice and sang along with any type of music. He also enjoyed cooking, hunting, fishing and being with friends. Ricky had many friends going back to high school and carnival days. While he was dearly loved by his family and friends for his humor, caring and loyalty, his lifelong struggles with substance abuse created challenges for him and all who knew and loved him.
Ricky is survived by his sister Patty Nunn (Mike LaCoursiere) of Frazee, his nephews Jason (Ilse) Rolf of Minneapolis,, Nate (Nora Sandstad) LaCoursiereof Duluth, niece Janelle (Lukas) Brandon of Moorhead, 4 great nephews and 2 great nieces, two paternal aunts, LaVonne and Lola and several cousins. He is also survived by his companion Emma Morgan.
Preceding Ricky in death were his parents, Len and Dottie Martin, two sisters Kathleen in 1967 and Janet in 1980 as well as his grandparents Emil and Nanna Boock and Oscar and Delphia Martin. A graveside memorial will be held at a later time.
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