Ricardo Enrique Urdaneta, age 29, passed away on August 27th after a courageous battle with lymphoma at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Born in Maracaibo, Venezuela, Ricky moved as a young child with his family to South Florida in 1994. He grew up in Fairfax, VA, a suburb of Washington D.C., from 1997 to 2007, until he left to pursue his college education. He graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY with a double major in Electrical Engineering and Electric Power Engineering in 2011.
After graduating he worked as an engineer for Greene, Tweed and Co. in Kulpsville PA, a specialty materials company. Ricky had resided in Manayunk, PA and more recently in Conshohocken, PA.
Ricky was defined by his selflessness, his integrity, and his strong moral compass. Gregarious, and with a great sense of humor, he was a very loyal friend. He was a fan of the Redskins, his local football team, and followed European soccer closely, an interest he shared with his dad. He played soccer, and was a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. During high school he worked for years as a children’s instructor at his local martial arts academy. Ricky was a car enthusiast; he enjoyed the beach and music. He played electric guitar and bass, and loved classic rock. He served for several years as an altar server at Mary’s House --the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C., with many of the masses televised through EWTN.
He is survived by his loving parents Ricardo A. and Alina Urdaneta, his sister Daniela Urdaneta and her husband Brett Lipschultz, his beloved girlfriend Laura Krotowski, his grandmothers, Elida Urdaneta and Luisa De Castro, his uncle, Luis E Castro (Blanca), his aunt, Lisa Castro (Maurizio Porcellini), his cousins Francesco, Amanda and Andrea, and his cherished friends, who stayed so close to him during his intense and inspiring fight for the last two years.
The viewing will take place on Tuesday, September 4th, 2018 at Higgins Home for Funerals, 752 Mountain Blvd. Watchung, NJ 07069 from 5pm to 9pm. Funeral services will begin on Wednesday, September 5th at the funeral home at 9 am, followed by a funeral mass at St. Mary’s of Stony Hill RC Church at 225 Mountain Blvd. in Watchung, NJ at 10 am. The interment will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery, at 145 Mt. Airy Road in Bernardsville, NJ.
Memorial donations in his loving memory may be made to the HEADstrong Foundation (Headstrong.org) and The Lymphoma and Leukemia Society (LLS.org), who helped him so much during this difficult journey.