Cover photo for Tyrone Eli Ricks, Sr.'s Obituary
Tyrone Eli Ricks, Sr. Profile Photo
1956 Tyrone 2021

Tyrone Eli Ricks, Sr.

April 23, 1956 — September 24, 2021

Tyrone Eli Ricks, Sr. transitioned from this life on Friday, September 24, 2021 at Bon Secours Medical Center. Tyrone Eli Ricks was born on April 23, 1956 to Roscoe McClinton Ricks and Lillian Porter Ricks, both deceased. He would be the last of 5 children born of this union. He is predeceased by his brothers Slester Ricks, Roscoe Ricks Jr., Herbert Lee Ricks Sr., and his only sister, Veronica Ricks Branch. He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Vernell Southerland Ricks, his son Tyrone Jr, daughter Danielle Southerland, 5 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren, Sister Rita Williams, And Brother Sekenia Williams. As a child, Tyrone was very mechanically inclined. He loved tinkering on cars and was a huge gun enthusiast. These loves would pay off as he got older. He would often be found working under the hood of a car or messing around with his motorcycles. Very rarely would you find him without grease under his trademark long fingernails. He rolled his love of weapons into a career as a deputy sheriff for the City of Portsmouth not long thereafter. That seems to have been the highlight of his career. He also worked as a security guard with Federal Protective Services at the Navy Base. Anything having to do with guns was his focus. Snowdrift, as he was called by a favored cousin, spent much time in Smithfield during the summer with his aunts. He would hang out with cousins Jimmy Lee, J.T. and friend George Franklin during the summer, just hanging out. On Saturdays, the gathering spot was Aunt Edith’s house with all the aunts. On Sundays, everyone came to the old family home in Driver, VA. One thing is for sure, he would have never been seen without a pistol on his side. Tyrone and Vernell’s relationship started over a slice of pizza. It was love at first sight. Their love and affection for each other was palpable and unmatched. They were inseparable. Tyrone brought much joy and happiness to all who crossed his path. He was an awesome father who was always there when needed. His health began to fail a few years ago. A hospital stay here and there evolved into numerous and frequent stays due to his growing debility. On the morning of September 24, 2021, his heart stopped for the last time. His medical team repeatedly tried to resuscitate him, as they had done before, but to no avail. He slipped away from us in the physical form, but he will never be gone from our hearts, minds and souls. He left an indelible mark on everyone he touched. He is missed immensely already. The Service will be held Saturday. October 2, 2021 at 12:00 PM. Viewing will be held from 10 am -12:00pm prior to the service. Please keep the Ricks Family in your prayers.
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