John “Ricky” Ulp of Southold died peacefully May 8 at Eastern Long Island Hospital, Greenport. He was 71.
He was the son of John (a music teacher at Southold school) and Edith Ulp; brother to David and a member of a very loving family, all of whom predeceased him. However, Ricky was surrounded by many friends, some of whom became like family.
Disabled by cerebral palsy from birth, Ricky did not have an easy life, but he made the most of it and was an inspiration to many. He was a local figure, often seen on his three-wheeler or in his electric wheelchair, tooling around town with two American flags flying. When he was younger, Ricky and his dog, Babe, who followed him everywhere, could be seen enjoying the sights and sounds of Southold. He often participated in the Fourth of July parade, waving and smiling at both friends and strangers.
During summers in his youth, Ricky’s parents ran the concession stand at the Wharf House at Founders Landing. Ricky could be found there playing chess and just hanging out. Playing chess was a longtime hobby, and he belonged to the local chess club.
A member of First Presbyterian Church of Southold, Ricky, with his father, did the church bulletins in the early 1960s, and Ricky had a ditto machine set up at home to run them off. He also loved to write and contributed articles about nature to the local newspaper.
Ricky loved many sports and was an avid fan of the New York Yankees and the New York Giants. He enjoyed horse racing and had gone to the Belmont Stakes. He watched tennis practices and matches at Southold schools and had gone to the U.S. Open several times.
About four weeks ago, Ricky and his wonderful caregivers took a trip to Florida. Sitting in a dune buggy, he got to get splashed by the ocean and enjoy the beautiful girls on the beach. When asked how his trip was, he said “GREAT!”
Interment was Monday, May 13, followed by a memorial service at First Presbyterian Church of Southold. The Rev. Peter Kelley, assisted by other local clergy, officiated. Donations in Ricky’s memory may be made to the North Fork Animal Welfare League, P.O. Box 297, Southold, NY 11971 or First Presbyterian Church, of Southold, fpcsouthold.org.
Funeral arrangements were entrusted to DeFriest-Grattan Funeral Homes.
This is a paid notice.