By Kathy Chouteau
A “Celebration of Life Block Party” will be held in honor of the late Richard Lompa Sat., July 16 from 12-4 p.m. at 2 West Richmond Ave. in Point Richmond. Mr. Lompa passed away peacefully in his sleep Jan. 24 at the age of 84, according to his son, Ernest Lompa.
The Celebration of Life, which Ernest said will include stories about his father, food, drink and music, will be a gathering “in the streets of downtown Point Richmond near People’s Park and close to the businesses that Richard helped start from scratch.” Nearby Railroad Avenue will be closed during the block party, he said.
Described as “extremely pro Richmond” by his son, Mr. Lompa played a pivotal role in helping Point Richmond’s Up & Under Pub and Grill, Raymond’s Pizzeria and Maya Taqueria get started as their landlord and unofficial advisor. The elder Lompa was also the owner of the neighborhood’s original firehouse and jail.
During his lifetime, Mr. Lompa also “put that little [parklet] together across from the pub,” which was “an eclectic, cool place to hang out,” said Ernest. His father, the ultimate people person, nicknamed the space “People’s Park” and took care of its plants well into his elder years. Ernest added that one of his father’s favorite sayings was “keep up the good work,” and if you asked him how he was doing, he’d humbly respond, “better than I deserve.”
Aside from being a local building owner and park founder, Mr. Lompa—who graduated from Richmond High School—worked in the printing business throughout his career, first for his uncle Murry Aquistapace at Richmond Blueprint, and later, at his own business, Lompa Printing.
Ernest isn’t the only one to remember his father fondly. In sharing the flyer re: the Celebration of Life for Mr. Lompa on the Everybody’s Richmond California Facebook page, Up & Under owner Nathan Trivers encouraged locals to come out and “celebrate a Richmond legend.” Read Mr. Lompa’s obituary here.
RSVPs are requested from those planning to attend Mr. Lompa’s Celebration of Life Block Party; contact [email protected] or call (510) 812-7956.