Richard Jerry Low Jr., age 63, died on Wednesday, November 11, 2020, in Alexandria, Virginia. He was born in Ft Leonard Wood, Missouri on November 3, 1957, to Richard and Sachiko Low, and was the eldest of three children. Rich lived in many places during his childhood, as his father was an officer in the Army Corps of Engineers, including Ft Wainwirght, Alaska; Ft Belvoir, Virginia; Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; Denver, Colorado; and Ft Knox, Kentucky.
Rich attended North Hardin High School in Radcliff, Kentucky, where he started on both the offensive and defensive lines with his brother. He also earned the rank of Eagle Scout. He was offered six full scholarships to various schools, including West Point and the Air Force Academy. He chose to attend Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in New York with an Army ROTC scholarship. Throughout college, he was a member of the fencing team where he competed with the Epee at a national level. He graduated with a degree in Chemical Engineering and became a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army. In 1979, Rich was honorably discharged from the Army. After serving his country, he worked in a uranium mine where he started down the path of his explosive career. He later worked on the production of soda ash at Stauffer Chemical Company in Rock Springs, Wyoming.
In 1984, he joined NAVSEA and began his 30 year career with the US Navy and US Marine Corps as a general engineer in charge of purchasing ammunition. In June 1988, he was chosen to be a safety engineer in the Safety Division. In January 1990, he was selected to be a supervisory logistics management specialist at the United States Marine Corps headquarters. In November 1998, Rich accepted a position in the Test and Evaluation Department at NSWC Indian Head Division. In November 1999, he was reassigned to the Program Management Office and was promoted to ND-5 (GS-15) in August 2000 where he remained until his retirement in 2014.
During his 30 years of service, Rich received many awards for outstanding support and service to our country. These include the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award, third highest Navy civilian award; Patent awards; the NSWC Team Award; and numerous Letters of Commendations. These awards speak highly of his dedication and contributions to our Nation’s defense mission.
After his retirement, Rich had more time to devote to his passions: collecting antique guns, going to the movies, and playing board games, especially strategic war games. He would try out new and old guns at a shooting range, catch the latest movie, and play games, always with friends.
In his personal life, Rich was a foodie. He was always willing to try any new restaurant in town. Every time he did, he brought people together. He was well known at his favorite restaurants, The Peking Duck, Duck Chang’s, Kyoto, and Hong Kong Pearl. He hosted many group dinners, large and small. He often befriended the owners and staff of his favorite places. He also loved the arts. From The Kennedy Center and The Shakespeare Theater to Cirque du Soleil, Wolf Trap Concert Hall, and the Birchmere, he attended performances hundreds of times. Every time he did, he invited people to these event--friends, families, and coworkers. One of his friends called him “The Glue” as he was someone who brought people together with kindness and generosity. Truly he will be missed.
Rich is survived by his father, Richard J Low; his brother, Douglas H Low; his sister, Jennifer L Amerson and her husband, S Michael Amerson; and nephews Jack, Matthew, and Michael.
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Meeting ID: 956 0093 7426
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American Heart Association
John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
2700 F Street NW, Washington DC 20037