Sept. 12, 1926-July 6, 1999
Richard Barrutia, internationally known linguist, died July 6, 1999. He was 73 years old.Born September 12, 1925 in Salt Lake City, Utah, he was the third child of Basque immigrants, Maria Idoeta and Pasqul Barruia. At 18, he enlisted in the Navy Air Corp and became a link trainer of pilots in he U-Five Program. When World War II ended, he formed a musical trio, The Gay Rancheros. In the late 1950's, he decided to continue his education. He graduated with distinction with a B.S. in Liberal Arts from Arizona State in 1958. By June of 1959, he received a bachelor of foreigh trade from the American Institute of Foreign Trade (Thunder Bird where he also taught) at Phoenix. Another masters in Spanish was completed in 1968 from Arizona State. He was awarded his Ph.D. in linguistics, Spanish from the University of Texas Austin in 1964. He worked all the while, either teaching, playing music or doing magic.
Upon his final graduation, the odyssey of a truly compassionate man began. He loved teaching linguistics, Spanish, Portuguese and culture. He taught and trained students for the Peace Corps in Brazil. He did NDEA (Nation Defense Education Act) workshops in Ecuador.
In 1965, Richard was hired by the University of California at irvine. He was a founding faculty member. Over the next 30 years, he would serve the Hispanic and all communities well. He helped author bi-lingual education in California, founded and directed the Masters in Arts of Teaching and the Bilingualism Program at UCI. He helped found the program for Asian languages. He was the on site director of the education abroad program (EAP) in mexico City for 2 years and in Madrid, Spain for 2 years, he also founded and directed the program in Morelia, Mexico. he was chairman of the Dept. of spanish and Portuguese for two years. During all this he wrote numerous articles and published various text books.
In 1977, he was elected president of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese in Madrid. That summer he was knighted with the title of Caballero De La Orden Del Merito Civil by His Majesty King Juan Carlos of Spain for service to scholarship in hispanic letters. In 1984, he was named by EAP as the all campus coordinator for intensive language programs abroad. He recieved the U.C.I. Almni Association Distinguished teaching award in 1986.
He retired in 1993, but continued to direct the EAP office - Irvine Campus as professor emeritus until september 1996. Always active in the arts, he became an active member of the museum of Latin American art in Long Beach and an ardent supportor of the Bowers Museum of Cultural Art in Santa Ana. He helped raise the funds for the Multi-Cultural Art in Santa Ana. He helped raise the funds for the multi-cultural mural by mexican Maestro Raul Anguiano.
A second mural by Maestro Angiano to be started in August at the Bowers, will be dedicated to his dear friend, Richard.
Richard is survived by his brothers, Tony and Al Barrutia of Salt Lake city, UT; his sister, Elvira Beatram of Bountiful, UT; his daughter, Elizabeth Barrutia rich of Los Angeles and his wife, Kathleen of Corona Del Mar.
A memorial service is scheduled for Sunday, September 12 at 4 p.m. at the Bowers Museum of Cultural Art, 2002 North Main Street, Santa Ana, CA.
In lieu of flowers, it is requested that donations be made to Bowers Museum with the annotation Barrutia Fund. This new fund will support the cultural and artistic development of children of Santa Ana. Please mail to: Kathleen Barrutia, 709 Cameo Highlands Dr., Corona Del Mar, CA 92706.
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