The only person in Missouri history to hold both positions of Missouri Speaker of the House and Senate President Pro Tem has died. Ron Richard, R-Joplin, was 75 years old.

Richard started his political career in the 1990’s, where he was elected to the Joplin City Council. The Joplin bowling alley owner then served as mayor from 1994-1998.

His time in the state legislature began in 2002 when he joined the House of Representatives. He served eight years in the House before being elected to the state Senate in 2010. He was elected to serve as President Pro Tempore from 2015 – 2018.

Due to term limits, he left office in 2019.

Richard leaves behind his wife Patty and two children.

Richard was a man of few words, but when he spoke, he did not mince words. Many Republican and Democratic friends he made in the legislature are thinking of him and his family today. The responses are flooding in on social media.

Gov. Mike Parson served alongside Richard in both the Missouri House and Senate.

Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe also served with Richard in the Missouri Senate.

One of the governors Richard served under was Jay Nixon, a Democrat.

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