Last month, the Santa Clarita Valley lost one of its own in a motorcycle accident in Orange County. Richard “Ricky” Nordland lived in Canyon Country and Agua Dulce, attending Valley View Elementary School from Kindergarten through sixth grade, and both La Mesa Jr. High and Sierra Vista Junior High School. Ricky attended Vasquez High School for three years before returning to Canyon Country where he attended Canyon High, then graduated from Bowman High School in 2008. An all American athlete, Ricky participated in athletics through the City of Santa Clarita youth sports programs and competitive leagues, including soccer, basketball, karate and T-ball. He also played baseball at Canyon Country Little League and at William S. Hart League. Ricky also participated in Pop Warner Football through the Canyon Country Athletic Association (CCAA) for four years, and continued to play in high school. When he wasn’t on a field with a ball in his hand, Ricky could be found in karate classes or riding his dirt bike. He enjoyed BMX racing from a young age, which led to his passion for dirt bikes. Ricky joined the United States Marines in 2013, where he served in the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines. In June, he returned from deployment in Okinawa. He was stationed at Camp Pendleton, Calif., where he recently was promoted to corporal and accepted an offer to reenlist. Ricky had a positive attitude that affected all who encountered him. He had a passion for adventure and his motto in life was “never give up.” Loved ones say he always had a smile and was there to offer help for a friend in need. Coaches, teachers, friends and fellow Marines all echo that Ricky was a natural leader and always there to lift your spirits and help to motivate you to succeed. Ricky is survived by his son, Joseph, parents, siblings, grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles. He has been laid to rest at Eternal Valley Memorial Park in Newhall. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Santa Clarita Opportunity for a Recreational Experience (S.C.O.R.E.) program, which provides financial scholarships for local children to participate in athletic programs. To donate to S.C.O.R.E., make checks payable to the City of Santa Clarita, and write “SCORE” in the memo line. Donations can be mailed to: Cynthia Victor, Recreation & Community Services Supervisor, City of Santa Clarita, 20880 Centre Pointe Parkway, Santa Clarita, CA 91350.