Joseph R. Rizk

DSC01588-copyJoseph R. Rizk passed away peacefully at home with his wife, Betty Ann, and daughter, Tia Anne, by his side on January 3, 2015 at the age of 92. He was born in Heliopolis, Egypt on January 1st, 1923 to Joseph R. Rizk and Mathilda Heinen.


Joseph was Copt and Christianity was an important part of his life. He attended English Mission College for his elementary education. While in school, Joseph was always interested in athletics and he started running competitively and won 3 trophies for the half-mile. Sports continued to play an important role in his life, and he became involved in cricket and tennis. He then attended Victoria College in Alexandria, graduating in 1942.


After graduation, he worked at Shell Oil for 15 years in Alexandria. During this time, he spent many hours at Stanley Beach with his brother, Magdi. He joined the Smouha Country Club, and his passion became golf. He played in professional golf tournaments, winning several trophies. He worked early mornings and headed to the golf course by mid-day. After playing 18 holes of golf under the Egyptian sun, he cooled down by drinking tea and eating sandwiches with friends.


These friends were as cosmopolitan as Alexandria itself. This city was a haven for all religions, countries and cultures. Joseph was a Copt and his friends were Jewish, Muslims, Christian, British, French, Italian, Greek and Maltese.DSC01225

By the mid-50’s, the political situation in Egypt became tenuous and he felt he needed to make a change in his life, so he decided to immigrate to America and he entered the University of Wisconsin as a freshman at the age of 39. He discovered the sport of football during the Lombardi era and has been an avid Packer fan ever since.


Joseph eventually pursued a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering and it was during this time he met his wife, Betty Ann. They married in 1964 and celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary Sept. 5th, 2014.


In 1965, he started working at Boeing in the Commercial Aviation Division which included: test flights, work with VIP planes and their delivery to various countries, working at Boeing de Havilland in Toronto for three years and also in Indonesia for 1 ½ years.


Before and after retirement, he and his wife enjoyed traveling and did so at every opportunity. His main interests were politics, world events and sports.


Joseph lived an adventurous and accomplished life. He will be greatly missed.


Donations can be made in his name to Evergreen Hospice in Kirkland, Washington at (designate hospice) or your local hospice.

5 Responses to “Joseph R. Rizk”

  • Roger and Pam Timm says:

    Our thoughts are with you. We are so glad we were able to come for a fantastic visit a few years ago. We have great memories with you and Uncle Joe.

    We love you,

    Roger and Pam

  • Chuck and Pat Ballard says:

    Our thoughts are with Betty and Tia: We really enjoyed knowing Joe and especially remember traveling to Egypy with Betty and Joe in 2009. It was a memorable trip and was Joe’s last time in Egypt.
    Chuck and Pat

  • Jeff Brening says:

    I am very saddened by the news of Joe’s passing. Thinking of the Rizk family at this most difficult time. You have my deepest condolences.


  • Mimi Rizk Heggelund says:

    My uncle Joseph, or Zouzou as I liked to call him, was with me from the moment I was born and has remained by my side ever since. From Alexandria, Egypt to Bellevue, Washington, USA. He was there for me in times of laughter and in times of sorrow. He has been a strong force in my life and I shall miss him terribly. But I will have wonderful memories of all our times together as a family with Betty, and soon after with Tia and all the extended family! My prayers and thoughts are with you Aunty Betty and Tia.
    In loving memories, always and forever.

  • Laurice Rizk says:

    Joe was my brother in law and my best friend. Joe was an avid sports person, he ran, swam, a great golfer. Magdi joe’s brother and me played golf three to four times a week. The best part of our golf game was the “19th hole” were all our golfer friends got together, joe was always the heart of the party. Bridge came next we had good bridge players who always asked him to join them. Joe promised Magdi,when he decided to move to the US that his two nieces Mimi & Mona will always have a home with him. We were lucky to be able to leave Egypt, Magdi was hired by a Swiss company and they helped us leave Egypt. Joe was then married to Betty Ann, a great lady who graciously accepted two teen agers live with them. Betty & Joe were a newly married couple just starting their life. Thanks to her love & patience Joe’s two nieces were very lucky to have him iin Seattle. With Betty’ help guidance my daughters graduated from UW, are happily married. Tia my niece is Betty& Joe’s daughter a lovely accomplished lady we are proud of all her accomplishments. Betty & Tia this a hard time but Joe will always be in our hearts. Love. Laurice

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