Lieutenant Colonel Richard Jerome Scherberger, United States Army, Retired, died 21 December 2021 after a heroic battle with Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma. He was a Soldier, Husband, and Father.
Surviving Richard is his wife, Vicky Lynn Hickerson Scherberger, son, Scott Douglas, wife Gina, grandchildren Mia Grace and Caden, all Madison, Alabama residents, and his recuse dogs Baxter and Bailey.
His son, Kelly Barrett Scherberger, and his parents, Colonel Richard J Scherberger (United States Army, Retired) and Virginia Barrett Scherberger of Norfolk, Virginia, preceded him in death.
Surviving are his siblings Joyce Dee (Reeves) Adair, John
Francis (Barbara) Scherberger, Thomas (Janet) Scherberger and Suzanne
(Roger) Sherman, and grandchildren Leah and Flynn Scherberger.
After graduating from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, Richard received an Army commission as a Second Lieutenant. He honorably served his Country as a Field Artillery Officer for over twenty-one years retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. As an Army "brat" from his father's service, he moved frequently and attended thirteen schools before his high school graduation. His own Army travels took him from one end of the United States to another, included Kentucky, Oklahoma, California, Kansas, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. He also served his Country with tours in Korea and Germany.
He loved Soldiers and being a Soldier. Whenever someone thanked him for his service, Richard always commented, "It was my honor, and I would do it again."
In 1981 Richard completed the US Army's Organization Effectiveness School and continued his lifetime journey of service to others in leadership and organization development (OD). He was a practicing OD Consultant for over thirty-six years, emphasizing the value of building long-lasting relationships and meaningful experiences.
In 1993, he created his own company, Executive Leadership Skills International, serving private and public clients. His international work included Trinidad, Tanzania, Uganda, Botswana, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Mozambique, South Africa, Viet Nam, Thailand, and Guatemala, and locations throughout the United States. He shared with his clients that Fridays were less joyful days for him because it would be two days before he'd be reunited with his work colleagues. Unless, of course, he vacationed and spent time with his colleagues, which he often did. His colleagues were family.
He lived by three simple rules in life and work:
His years of listening to Armed Forces Radio and an excellent memory allowed him to identify the artist, year, and complete name of millions of songs. He played music continually and enjoyed everything from the St Louis Jesuits to the drum solo of the Rascals Danny Danelli, to the heart-wrenching lyrics of Jim Weatherly. He had a beautiful voice and was a wonderful dancer.
Richard awoke each morning working on a self-created math problem and sharing his dreams with Vicky. Next, he would study his Bible, reflect, pray, and meditate. Richard was a devote Christian and practicing Roman Catholic.
He was a vigilant advocate for 3D mammograms and thought nothing of opening his wallet to offer a friend the money for a mammogram.
He sought his energy from the water. He loved a warm beach with sand between his toes and the mesmerizing sounds of waves. He swam daily as weather allowed.
Richard was an excellent cook whose culinary delicacies included wings, ribs, pork belly, and he perfected steaks slightly waved over his grill. He liked his steaks rare, with emphasis on rare. Richard was also a Jack Daniels man.
As a lifelong learner with a Master's in Counseling Psychology, he studied his Bible, contemporary culture, and incongruency in human behaviors. He was also completing another coaching certification.
His granddaughter, Leah, took him by the hand one day and said, “Come with me, Bear,” Bear became his grandfather name and epitomized the presence he had in life.
His cousin Karen Scherberger shared that Richard was much bigger than life itself and always filled the room with his broad and contagious smile. He was fiercely proud of his family, Country, community, and beliefs. Called affectionally "Buddy" by his family, his strength and confidence were and remain an inspiration.
A Funeral Mass will be held at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Huntsville Alabama on Friday, 7 January, at 1400 hours. A private wake will follow the Mass.
A graveside ceremony with military honors will occur in Leavenworth National Cemetery in Leavenworth, Kansas later. As Richard desired, he will be buried with his and Vicky's son, Kelly.
Legacy Chapel Funeral Home and Crematory, 16 Hughes Road, Madison, Alabama oversees arrangements.