Richard Gomez

Profile Updated: March 14, 2020
Occupation semi retired but now School bus driver for the Gilbert School District in Arizona. And also Teach teenagers and some adults how to drive a car.
Children I do not have any children but at one time when I was 30 I was a Foster Parent for a 16 year old boy. More…(Bobby Williams )
Military Service Navy  

It is basically known that when one goes to a school reunion, there are few reasons to go. One, to reunite with high school buddies, show how well off and successful they really aren’t, and three, see if the years been kind to them all? The first reunion I went to I gained something like forty pound. So, two months before the event, I joined Nutra Systems and lost all excessive weight so I would look really gooooood. Not this time, what you see and read is what you get.
It seems like the students that were in my life at the time who knew what they wanted to be ended up being exactly what they had hoped for. Yet the ones that didn’t know took so much longer to find their slot in life if they ever did find it. I am one of those that never really found what I wanted to do. I am one that had many jobs. In fact, between graduation and 1975, I held twelve jobs of all kinds. However, as a sophomore, I did decide I really wanted to become a Catholic priest. But my GPA was in the toilet which made that dream impossible. So, then I decided I wanted to become a Brother. But about that time, I found my very first job. I became a bus-boy at Irma Maldonado’s parent’s restaurant. This is the place where I met a fellow employee that changed my life unfortunately. She was Mormon and convinced me to join. For the next thirty years, its where I tried to develop my spirituality until I finally got tired of it all and told the Bishop what to do, how to do it, and where to do it, and finally walked out never to come back. For the next twelve years, I floundered from the Jewish faith, Baptist, and spiritualism.
I’ve never been married (THANK GOD) but been engaged three times. It was as though God was telling me, “don’t do it, you will be sorry.” I was lucky as I broke it off just in time. However, one thing that I always felt very strong about and wanted dearly was to be married and have a family. I think that is probably my biggest regret in life. But one thing really counter acted those disappointments and that was the joy of being a foster parent. In the year that I had my son, it probably was the happiest year of my life, and I wish I had continued in the foster program after my boy left.
In those years, I was a splicer for Raychem, assembler for an electrical company, transporter for Stanford Hospital, ambulance driver, baker apprentice, and an assortment of other career opportunities. In 1975, I moved to Los Angeles and ended up working for an extermination company until 1995. The last five years working for Western Exterminator Company, I got the opportunity to have a route in Beverly Hills where I got the chance to meet actors, actresses, producers and entertainers. We had seven routes in Beverly Hills as well as a few in Bel-Air. We called each other the, “Exterminators of the Stars.” Having a route in Beverly Hills during the Christmas season was really cool because we could all find out how well each of us did during the year. Each of us had between 350 to 400 customers to service per month, Between all of them if we didn’t end up with at least two grand in your pocket along with countless gifts, you were a bad serviceman. But trust me, for the exception of a few, many of the individuals I serviced in Beverly Hills weren’t a big deal. At least not until Christmas.
During that time, I also got involved with hypnosis and became a hypno-therapist and had a small practice for a number of years. You know something? as many religious people seem to believe, while working with my clients, never did an evil spirit enter their bodies. No, no one vomited pea soup, nor did their heads turn around 120 degrees.
After the 1994 Northridge earthquake, I finally decided it was time to leave California. Making a long story short, I ended up in Arizona and became a truck driver and did that until half the company got laid off including myself. Due to the lack of job opportunities, and the fact I was turning 62 years old, I finally ended up applying for my social security and now for the past four years I have been semi-retired and working as a school bus driver for the Gilbert School District. During the summers, I teach teens how to drive a car and happen to love both jobs. However, I would describe teaching kids to drive only second to defusing bombs as far as the scale of danger is placed on it.
My hobbies: Even though my worst subject in school was English, I now happen to love writing. I remember when I was in the Navy, I was told by friends and family that if I wanted mail, I would have to write. Well at the start, the letters were very short, but by the time I got out of the service, they were three four pages long. And now I do a great deal of journalizing, and been trying to work on a book as well. I have also developed a taste for needlepoint. It was in Los Angeles where I developed that interest when I was an exterminator. One day at one of the complexes I serviced, I was invited in the manager’s apartment where she had needlepoint all over her walls. I found her work so interesting that I told her, “gee it’s too bad that needlepoint is a women’s hobby.” When she heard that, she shocked me by hauling off and smacking me in the arm telling me that it not women’s or man’s hobby, its art.” And I've been doing it ever since.
Ten years ago, I finally came back home to the Catholic Church and reaffirmed my faith in it. Has there been regrets? Yes, but don’t we all? I now live a simple life with my little dog and the friends I have at church, and work and at home. I go out to dinner, go to the movies, I take long drives to the mountains, watch TV, visit hospice patients, and try to stay close to God. What more can one ask for?

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Richard Gomez has left an In Memory comment for Joe Iencarelli.
Jan 26, 2019 at 9:33 AM

I didn't know Joe at all but in talking one day, telling him that I was planning to enter the priesthood, he was one of the very few that had any respect for me and am really sorry that he passed away so soon in life. 

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Feb 25, 2018 at 2:27 PM
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