It is with extreme sadness that we announce the passing of Dr. Gregory “Rick” Jaramillo. Dr. Jaramillo passed peacefully from this world to the next on April 26, 2022 at the age of 70 after a valiant fight with Parkinson’s Disease and dementia.
Dr. Jaramillo was born on August 7, 1951 in Denver, Colorado to JoAnn and Virgil Jaramillo. He is preceded in death by his parents and his beloved lifelong friend and mentor, Dr. Virgilio Licona as well as his deeply cherished friend, Rahim Nekoorad. He is survived by his beloved cats, his wife, Lupe Jaramillo, his SALUD family, his lifelong friends whom he considered family Barbara Bone-Licona, Ray and Carmen Ramirez, Jay Alire, Esther Acosta, Margarito and Cynthia Fuentes, Lenny Foster, Fereshteh Nekoorad, Homayoun Nekoorad, the Nekoorad family, Pao-Chin and Hui-Yu Huang, Dr. Richard and Lillian Rivera, Rhina (Rich) Rodriguez-Cernak, and Marta Moreno; his children Carolina Jaramillo, Lalania Carillo, Melissa Aragon, and Fred Aragon III; his grandchildren Israel Jaramillo, Abriana Henderson, Lilliana Langford, Kaliya Carillo, and Ruben Martin; his siblings Mark Jaramillo, Paula Jaramillo, Luke(Cindy) Jaramillo, Luanna (Mark) Baugh and Joseph (Donna) Jaramillo and numerous nieces, nephews, family members and friends.
Dr. Jaramillo left an indelible mark on this world. He was a family physician, an acupuncturist, and a community activist. He believed that with dedication and a persistent fight, anything was possible. He pushed us all to be our best selves and led by example. As a young man he spent time laboring in the agricultural fields of Colorado and cutting sugarcane in the fields of Cuba. These experiences, as well as many others, helped fuel the fire that burned within him to work to be a force for change for the disenfranchised. He involved himself with both the Chicano Movement and the Native American Indian Movement. From being arrested at Wounded Knee to caring for the poor, to spending countless hours volunteering with outreach programs and serving on boards, Dr. Jaramillo gave of himself and sacrificed personally as he worked tirelessly to help empower marginalized communities, including the Latino community, so that they would have access to quality healthcare, education, and housing.
Dr. Jaramillo saw healthcare as a human right and as such, dedicated his life’s work to providing health care to the poor and underserved communities. He was a passionate advocate of community health centers. He worked first as a physician assistant and then as a physician at various community health centers throughout Colorado including Rocky Ford, Pueblo, Lafayette, and Longmont. Together with Rhina Rodriguez-Cernak P.A. and the Salud team, Dr. Jaramillo also helped operate a mobile medical unit to provide medical care to migrant workers and the broader community. They also traveled to El Salvador to provide humanitarian medical care for those who were in extraordinary need.
Dr. Jaramillo served as Clinic Director of Longmont Salud Family Health Centers for a number of years and has been credited with being instrumental in building the clinic into what it is today. He lived for SALUD and took every opportunity to enrich the lives of all who walked through Salud’s doors by bringing works of art to the clinic and celebrating the children and their families with Día De Los Niños.
Dr. Jaramillo was honored with many awards throughout the years for his service to his community. His contributions and dedication will be greatly missed.
Although he was taken before his time, Dr. Jaramillo leaves behind a legacy of love, hard work, and commitment to community. He meant so much to so many. May he forever rest in the heart of God and may his memory always be a blessing to all who knew and loved him.
His wife, Lupe, wishes to express her gratitude to her daughter, Melissa, and her grandson, Ruben, for always being there as caretakers, especially when Dr. Jaramillo needed a great deal of care; thanks to Dr. Jaramillo’s doctors, TRU Community Care, TRU Hospice, and Carroll-Lewellen Funeral & Cremation Services, for their outstanding care and services. Special thanks to all of Dr. Jaramillo’s friends and Salud family, who upon hearing he only had days to live, dropped what they were doing and rushed to be by Dr. Jaramillo’s side, thanks also to those who were unable to visit but still called to express their love and gratitude to him in his final hours; to Ray Ramirez for his presence and support up until the very end; and to Carmen and Ray Ramirez, Jay Alire, Lenny Foster, Sonia Pankonin, Marta and Beto Moreno, Margarito Fuentes and Carmen Mireles for all they did to ensure that Dr. Jaramillo’s journey to the next world was sacred and beautiful.
A celebration of Dr. Jaramillo’s life will be held on his birthday, August 7, 2022. All who wish to attend are invited. Please contact Melissa Aragon at email@example.com or (720) 205-4771 for the location and time. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Virgilio Licona Scholarship Fund, University of Colorado, Building 500, Mail Stop AO65, 13001 E. 17th Place, Aurora, CO 80045.
Celebration of Life
August 7, 2022
11:56 AM to 11:56 AM