Berks County lost a very special person on Monday, Rick Bugera. Although we here at Reading Magazine did not know him personally, thanks to his Severe Weather Group on Facebook we feel like we did. Rick was a member of the Oley Fire Company Division of Fire and Rescue Services for the past 4 years and an avid photographer. If that wasn’t enough he also managed a Facebook group alerting residents of severe weather.
As a Certified Severe Weather Spotter for the National Weather Service he would post updates on incoming Severe Thunderstorms, Tornadoes, Hurricanes and Nor’Easters and Blizzards. His attentiveness to the group went above and beyond by posting detailed radar images, flood threats and snow totals. Dealing with severe weather is extremely challenging but that didn’t stop Rick from sharing his knowledge with those in need even if that meant staying up all night.
More impressively, Rick grew the Facebook group to 17,000 members all on a shoe string budget, only occasionally asking members contribute to his weather subscriptions services. Being modest, Rick would accept and carry on. The group would always come through, even recently when he was interested in purchasing a tablet to live stream his severe weather updates.
The news of his passing shocked thousands. Heading into fall it wasn’t unusual not to hear from Rick in the weather group. Most members would be waiting for his insights on the upcoming winter season. As the word spread so did his memory, many voicing their prayers and condolences.
Thank you Rick for all that you have done for the community, you will be missed.
UPDATE: At the request of Rick’s family there will not be a memorial service. The Oley Fire Co Division of Fire and Rescue will be having a gathering in Rick’s honor were friends and firehouse family members can share memories and celebrate his life together.
The gathering will be held at the Oley Fire Co engine room located on Main st. in Oley on Friday November 18th. It will begin at 1900hrs and go to 2100hrs. The Oley Fire company truck crew will also accept donations in his honor. These will also go towards offsetting costs that will be incurred during this time.
a GoFundMe has been setup on behalf of his sister to help with funeral and memorial services.