Woodlawn Funeral Home & Woodlawn Memorial Gardens

6329 E. Virginia Beach Blvd, Norfolk, VA


Ellison Morris Ricks

March 29, 1947June 24, 2020

Ellison Morris Ricks was born March 29, 1947 in Boykins, Virginia to the late Hercules Watson and Mary Frances Ricks. On June 24, 2020, God lovingly extended his hand and called his faithful servant, Ellison Morris Ricks to his eternal home. He attended South Hampton County Schools in Boykins, Virginia or as he called it “dumb school”. He graduated from Riverview High School in Franklin, Virginia. At a young age he was baptized by Rev. Davis at Church of God. Ellison’s career was dedicated to working a total of 41 years with the Airlines. He started with National in 1974, Pan-AM and Delta Airlines Miami, Florida, Norfolk, VA and Arlington, VA. Ellison enjoyed driving the tugs to guide those million dollar airplanes around on the tarmac to move the planes in their respective line up and order. Previous work included working for the 7 Up Bottling Company and Hertz Rental Car. Many family members and friends benefited from his wonderful perk of using a buddy pass for their travel in and out of the country. Ellison was affectionately known as “Red”, “Uncle Red”, “Uncle E”, “Pooh”, “Papa” and “Coach”. As most of you know Ellison did not give people a quick way out. He loved joking and telling it like it is he did not bite his tongue about anything to the guys at Delta, family, friends and associates. He would question them about their actions and choices. He had a compassionate and genuine love for children. Ellison would always say that he was adopted by Tacorie Brown and Mustafa Brown, that is how he acquired the name “Papa”. Ellison was full of excitement when his little buddy Keegan Yates would come to visit, they would eat, pray and play in their own special way. He would let the children just be children that came over to see him. He would buy them food, juice, gift cards and played with them as if he was their age. He ordered platters of food from his favorite Bar-B-Que restaurant Famous Dave’s and favorite seafood restaurant Cameron’s Seafood. It brought him joy to his heart to see his family and friends eat until their hearts were content. As a true blue “DALLAS COWBOYS” fan he talked more trash with the neighbors about the prospects for each season. He knew the team in Washington, DC would be sitting at home on the couch watching the playoffs. Name that song brought great joy to Ellison as he would say, “Cynt who sings that song?”. The 33’s, 45’s, cassettes and CD’s are still at the house where he last played them. He most recently turned the music up loud to listen to artists like Charlie Wilson, Paul Hardcastle, Portrait, Betty Wright and Snoop Dogg on Spotify. May he continue to groove, bounce, sing and dance forever. Ellison leaves to cherish his memory, his wife Cynthia Lucetta Slade Ricks of 34.5 years. Daughters Christye Medina Futrell of Hampton, Virginia and Carla Lucetta Frances Slade Ricks of Forestville, Maryland. Two precious grandchildren Chasitye Mone’ Futrell and Jaylin Lasan Bishop. Aunt Nothando Zulu (Vusi) of Minneapolis, Minnesota. One sister, Valerie Hurley of Virginia Beach, brothers, Milton Murrell (Martha) Orangeburg, South Carolina and George Murrell, Jr. (Edna) Franklin, VA and a host of other relatives and friends. Preceded in death by Stepmother Alice Watson, four sisters, Mary Alice Arrington, Virginia Stephens, Ruth Ferguson, Yvonne Alston; three brothers, Linwood Murrell, John Lee Murrell and Willie Murrell.


  • Visitation

    Friday, July 10, 2020

  • Burial

    Friday, July 10, 2020


Ellison Morris Ricks

have a memory or condolence to add?

Shiryl West

July 10, 2020

Reading Red's obituary was touching. Prayers and condolences to my DC/VA family.
I love you'll!

Carla Ricks

July 2, 2020


I know you have taken your wings. I appreciate all that you have done for our family and friends. You will be missed greatly by all of your neighbors, family and friends. I know you will continue to protect us as our angel in heaven.

I Love You,

Carla Ricks