Richard Otis Higingbotham

October 19, 1951June 1, 2018

Richard Otis Higingbotham, 66, passed away on June 1, 2018. He was born in Atlanta, GA and resided in Orange Park, FL. Richard served five years in the USMC during the Vietnam War. After serving in a variety of assignments as an Aircrewman in the US Navy throughout his 30 year career, he retired with his final assignment as Command Master Chief (CMC) of NAS Cecil Field. Post-retirement, he continued to contribute to the military by creating and executing training programs for active service members. As a father, he strived to pass on his extensive skills to prepare his children for all aspects of the real world. Richard was predeceased by his son, Michael Dennis Higingbotham. Survivors include his loving wife of 40 years, Patricia Higingbotham; son, Jeremiah (Michelle) Higingbotham; daughter, Kathryn (Brian) Jackson; daughter-in-law, Bree Higingbotham; mother, Joan; brother, Kevin; sister, Hope; 6 grandchildren: Kyla Higingbotham, Collin Higingbotham, Natalie Higingbotham, Benjamin Higingbotham, Lea Jackson and Grace Higingbotham; and a great-grand-daughter, Lydia. Military services will be held at 2:30 PM, Friday, June 15, 2018 at Jacksonville National Cemetery, 4083 Lannie Road, Jacksonville, FL. Please make memorial donations to Haven Hospice Custead Care Center, 745 Blanding Blvd, Orange Park, FL 32065 in Richard's name. Arrangements by HARDAGE-GIDDENS RIVERMEAD FUNERAL HOME, 127 Blanding Blvd, Orange Park, FL. Please post words of comfort at

Please Note: Richard's wishes were for a military service and therefore the service is set on a schedule. All guests must be at the Jacksonville National cemetery at 2 PM, lined up in lane 2. You will then wait for the designated time and be escorted to the pavilion. Military honors will be performed and then a brief service. After the service it is requested that you return to your vehicles.


  • Military Service Friday, June 15, 2018

Richard Otis Higingbotham

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Calvin Leavell

September 7, 2018

It was my honor to work with Rick at FSCJ.
Peace be with him and his family.
This is Rick and VADM Harms.

Bonnie Connell

June 14, 2018

I had the privilege to work with Rick at NAS Cecil Field. I just moved from San Diego to the east coast. He took me under his wing and welcomed me with open arms. I learned a lot from him. He was one of the best CMC's I have ever worked for. He told everyone I was the meanest Senior Chief in the Navy and then would smile at me. We had many great times at Cecil. I will never forget you brother. My prayers go out to all the family, he was an awesome man, one taken to soon. AKCS (ret)

Clint Smiley

June 13, 2018

Spent many a weekend and evenings with Rick and Pat eating, drinking and hanging out at the pool. Fishing with Rick and getting Ruben boat ready for the light parade. Tailgating at Jaguar games. Taking him to get back surgery. CPO meetings at Cecil Field. Him sitting the Master Chief board and getting me my second star.I will remember Rick as as the best Command Master Chief that I ever had the pleasure to serve with during my 26 years in the Navy. Mostly I will remember Rick as my friend. Rick, here’s looking at you.


June 12, 2018

RIP Master Chief. It was a pleasure and an honor to serve with you. You inspired so many, your sense of humor, patriotism and dedication to your troops was unsurpassed. You will be missed. Heartfelt thoughts and prayers to Rick's family whom he cherished. May God Bless Rick's family and friends, we all are surely better for having had him in our lives. Fair winds and following seas Shipmate, rest in peace, we got the con. CTTCS CV Brown

Joan Ward

June 10, 2018

May the Lord bless you and keep you until we are together again. I love you. Mother

Christopher Sears

June 9, 2018

Rick was the CMC at NAS Cecil Field in 1998 whem I made Chief. I remember well the mornings we spent running the perimeter roads at Cecil Field in formation led by Rick. The lessons he instilled upon us during the days of our CPO initiation. I cherish those days. The final years of NAS Cecil Field. Rick was that rare mix of the old Chief blending with the new generation of Chief Petty Officers. Thank you Shipmate. We will meet again. We love you freind. We pray for your family. Carry on.

Randy Pilgram

June 9, 2018

Randy Pilgram

June 9, 2018

Randy Pilgram

June 9, 2018

Randy Pilgram

June 7, 2018

My Dear Rick, He was my best friend, brother and mentor. Our bond was a once in a lifetime bond. As he said he waited a lifetime to have our friendship as I had felt the same. We shared everything without any reservations, his impact on my life professionally and personally has changed me in many ways. I am so heart broken, Rick will always be in my heart and thoughts, I am so sad!! Rick lives on shinning his light from heaven and will always be my Angel, I miss you so much!! I pray for your family and hope they can find pease. Your impact on so many Peaple will last on, you have done your work here on earth and God has chose to take you home because he needs more Angels in heaven.