Richard Kaplen – Great friend, Devoted Father, Husband, Vietnam Veteran, Board Member of Tampa’s Philly of the South – Die Hard Eagles Fan & one of my closest friends, passed on today

It is with deep regret and a very heavy heart, that I must inform you all of the passing of Rick Kaplen, my dear friend and above all else a true fellow die-hard Philadelphia Eagle fan. On behalf of the whole Tampa’s Philly of the South fan club members, we offer our prayers, comforting thoughts, and deepest sympathies to his loving wife Linda and his whole family. You guys are not alone at this time of grief, the entire Philly of the South fan club is here for all of you! Grief is a multifaceted response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone or something that has passed over to that other side of life, that someday we all must face in our way and in on our way.

Rick, please know that each of us that knew you personally, found a way to bond to you with you in the affection of love, respect and a belief in true “Philly” brotherhood that you always showed to all of us. You were always there for me and the club, always showing your willingness to work diligently behind the scenes for anything that would promote or better our club. Never in an effort to benefit yourself but only in an effort to someway benefit all of the club members. Never asking for anything in return but maybe perhaps just a simple “nod” of appreciation from a club member that you didn’t even know personally but somehow truly enjoyed the fruits of your heartfelt labors.

Many of our fan club members will never understand your willingness, heartfelt love of the team and that never give in or give up attitude when it came to how you felt about Philly of the South. Win, lose or draw – you were always that one Eagle fan I could always count on no matter what the score said. I will always be thankful to the Lord above that you were there with the club and me in 2018 to watch your beloved BIRDS with the Superbowl. World Champions buddy – and nobody can ever take that away from you or your fellow club members.

You, my dear friend, will be sorely missed – I will always think of you after every Eagles touchdown when the club erupts in another chorus of FLY EAGLES FLY. Your love of the team and our club will NEVER be forgotten by me and hopefully, all club members that knew you. My only regret is that death never allows one last moment to tell someone like you Rick “face to face” that I truly love you brother and thank you for all you did for me and our fan club!

Rest in peace bro and know that I will never forget what you gave and taught to me and our fan club about life, love of the team, being a true fan and brotherhood. You will always be one of my heroes, God’s speed buddy.

Mike – Club Founder of Tampa’s Philly of the South