Remembering: Richard Young

Family, friends and colleagues pay tribute to the untimely passing of Richard Young, setting up a Cancer Research UK fundraiser, dedicated in his memory.

Son, Alex Young

At 5pm on Friday 23 April, my dad passed away. Not many people knew he had been diagnosed with cancer a few days earlier, but the messages of support we’ve received have been amazing. Over his whole life he worked with thousands of people around the world, and his impact on them and his industry will live on. He accomplished too much in his life to be summed up, so we’ve created a tribute page where anyone can add their thoughts, and any pictures they have, and there is a link to donate to Cancer Research UK if anyone would like to:

Load Cell Rental, Colin Luke

Richard’s death has come as a huge shock to everyone who knew him. The fact he was taken so quickly seems at odds with his endless optimism and energy and so unfair; yet again cancer has taken one of the good guys. It is an understatement to say he will be missed. From his contagious enthusiasm and drive to his relentless attention to detail, he leaves a void that will be hard to fill.

Stage Manager, Brian Wares

Richard was a great boss and friend. As a production manager, he was vibrant and knew the whole production elements back to front. He always created a great vibe on a tour and really looked after his whole crew. He will leave a massive hole in the industry and be missed by many.

Creative Technology Head Of Music/Entertainment, Graham Miller

Richard was an incredible production manager. I have never met anyone with such a curious mind. He wanted to be across every part of the production to really understand it. I remember on Adele, he helped us build the LED screen at one point – just so he could understand better how it all worked. He was the master of the ‘awkward question’ – which kept us all on our toes and I frequently spoke with him to get his pragmatic perspective on things. Finally, we grew to be friends over the years, and we often used to meet for meals and just have a good old catch up about the industry. He has been such an influence on so many people coming into the industry and was incredibly loyal to his crew and his vendors – as long as they all did a good job! R.I.P Richard, you will be really missed.

Load Cell Rental, Jil Aram

To me he was a colleague, a mentor, and above all, a friend. Known by many as ‘The Grand Fromage!’

Silent House Productions, Baz Halpin

Richard was one of the best. He embodied the best qualities of a production manager and a person. He was creative, organised, supportive and kind. He had a passion for the work that we all do. He constantly innovated and found smart ways to solve logistical problems to ensure that the shows he worked on could be executed at the highest levels. He made sure that everyone under his watch were taken care of. I am still in shock at his passing. I think we all are. There will never be another like him, and I will miss him greatly. Take care Rich.

Tour Accountant, Ade Bullock

Richard and I worked very closely together for nearly a decade while he was Radiohead’s Production Manager. We had an amazing time, hot wars, cold wars, and every kind of war between, we bickered, we laughed, we cried, but we always ended up in a big bear hug as we laughed at the unlikely places and situations, we found ourselves in. Richard was our leader, and when disaster struck our tour in Toronto in 2012, it was he who took the helm, who made the tough decisions, made the impossible phone calls, and put his band and crew first.  No training could prepare anyone for an experience like this, but Richard rose to the task as if it was his superpower. He took care of everyone else with no thoughts for himself, completely selfless. Him and his bloody bell, and his big boots that seemed to get everywhere. But they are giant boots, and no-one will fill them quite like him.

Load Cell Rental, Andy Lovell

You always knew where you were with Richard. For me, more often than not, it was the naughty step after the many ‘debates’ we had, which I know we both thoroughly enjoyed. We had a wonderful, brotherly relationship, which I have always cherished – he’s among the cream of production managers that I’ve worked with and that’s how he will be remembered.

This article originally appeared in issue #261 of TPi, which you can read here.