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May 3, 2011 > In Rick's memory: high school honors one of its own

In Rick's memory: high school honors one of its own

By Mauricio Segura

Rick Devecchi was the type of person who led by example. Always willing to lend a hand, a word of advice, or just a simple smile to warm the hearts of those around him, he wouldn't think twice about helping a stranded motorist on the road or even giving his lunch to a homeless man who had nothing. As his brother Randy once stated, "He acted on an inner urge that drove him to help people." Married for 15 years with two children, his family was his life.

An alumnus of San Lorenzo's Arroyo High School, class of 1979, Rick worked in the family's Berkeley based trucking company, first started by his grandfather over 50 years ago. It was in front of the company warehouse one December morning in 1998 that the Devecchi family's life tragically turned upside down.

With Christmas just a week away, Rick was busy working when he was informed that a man was poking around the back of his pickup truck parked across the street. Rick headed out with a co-worker to see what was happening, but the mysterious man had gotten back into his own car and was driving slowly down the street. As he walked past the gates and into the middle of the driveway, the man hit the accelerator and plowed into the unsuspecting Rick before peeling away from the scene. Rick's father, who was standing near the gate, turned just in time to see his son tossed into the air and land motionless on the pavement.

Rick lingered in the hospital for three days, but the head trauma he suffered was too severe and the decision was made to take him off life support. At just 37 years of age, this husband, father, son, brother, beloved family member, and dear friend was laid to rest on Christmas Eve.

Thirteen years have passed, and Rick's murderer has never been caught. Despite a $35,000 reward, three features on "America's Most Wanted," and countless news stories throughout the years, the lack of solid witnesses has left this case unsolved.

But Rick's memory lives on and is honored every year by his Alma mater Arroyo High School with their Annual Car and Motorcycle Show. Saturday, May 7 marks the tenth year of the event, whose proceeds go to the school's athletic department. With all the recent California budget cuts, there is simply not enough money coming in to keep school sports programs running with 100 percent efficiency, so schools statewide have had to rely on alternate means to make ends meet.

The show will feature classic and custom cars, street rods, tricked out trucks, muscle cars, vintage cars, low riders, motorcycles, bicycles, and more. An assortment of food vendors will be on hand to please the taste buds, contests will be held with cool giveaways, and a stage with live music will be in place to provide the entertainment. KTVU Channel 2 is a co-sponsor of the event, and some of their on-air local celebrities will be serving as emcees and mingling with the crowd.

Past shows have been a hit with people of all ages, and just keep getting better and better. So, plan on spending your Saturday at Arroyo H.S. with the entire family for a day of hot cars, great food, and good wholesome fun.

Business owners interested in becoming sponsors of the event can call (510) 206-9068 for further information. Those who would like to enter their car or learn more about the show, contact Debbi Chambless at (510) 483-1776, or e-mail

Car and Motorcycle Show
Saturday, May 7
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Arroyo High School
15701 Lorenzo Ave., San Lorenzo
(510) 483-1776
Admission: $5

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