Richard Clayton "Boogie" Powell Jr.

March 24, 1955 - June 02, 2024

Richard Clayton "Boogie" Powell Jr.

March 24, 1955 - June 02, 2024


Richard “Boogie” Clayton Powell passed away surrounded by family on June 2nd, 2024, at the age of 69. Richard was a lifelong native of Bellingham, Washington, raised by parents Dick and Anna Mae Powell. He was a loving father and respected educator. He held a passion for freshwater fishing and could be frequently found crawling around the engine compartment of one of his vehicles.

Born March 24th, 1955, Richard was a Bellingham native, living there for his entire life. After recovering from a back injury in his youth, he graduated from Bellingham High School in 1973. He worked as a Disc Jockey in local dance clubs in his early adult life. At the age of 23, a transformative career would begin when he was initiated on April 18, 1978, into the United Association of Plumbers and Steamfitters, Local 40. During this time, his DJ experience earned him the beloved nickname, “Boogie.” Ascribed to him by his Union Brothers, this would come to be his name on every Union jobsite for the rest of his life.

On June 6th, 1981, “Boogie” married Karen Louise Ruschmann (passed away September 26, 2019). In the 1990’s, “Boogie” would become a welding and layout instructor at the UA Local 40 Union Hall in Bellingham. He would also come to organize and run the Local 40 weld shop, with “Mrs. Boogie” volunteering as his administrative assistant. Together they cultivated the education of hundreds of UA apprentices, over the course of 22 years.

“Boogie’s” involvement with his Local Union became his defining professional and personal characteristic. He was perpetually invested in the Local’s success, volunteering thousands of hours over two decades to facilitate the success of his students and Union Brothers and Sisters.

In 2004, “Boogie” was contracted as a UA hand to help build the Burlington training facility for the newly merged UA Local 26. For the following two decades, he oversaw the operation of the Burlington facility’s weld shop. “Boogie” also served for 20 years on the Welders Examination Board for Local 26, until resigning from said position in March 2024.

He is survived by his sister, Sherrie Manning, as well as his two sons, Jesse and Bryon. He also leaves behind five grandchildren: Anna Mae, Jazmin, Joseph, Ricky, And Eliana.

A modest graveside funeral service will be held at Greenacres Memorial Park for family and close friends at 11:00 am on Friday, June 28th.

Graveside Service

  • Date & Time: June 28, 2024 (11:00 AM)
  • Venue: Greenacres Memorial Park And Event Center—Ferndale
  • Location: 5700 Northwest Drive Ferndale, WA 98248 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (360) 384-3401

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