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House Passes Legislation to Designate Cocoa Beach Post Office the “Richard K. Salick Post Office”

Washington, July 14, 2014 - Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation (H.R. 451) introduced by Congressman Bill Posey (R-Rockledge) to designate the U.S. Post Office located at 500 North Brevard Avenue in Cocoa Beach the “Richard K. Salick Post Office”. Salick, who passed away on July 2, 2012, was a champion surfer through much of the late 1960s and 1970s, but he was also a life-long sufferer of kidney disease and a long-time advocate supporting kidney transplantation and kidney disease patients.

“There are many people that I have come across that I am thankful for and Richard Salick is one of them,” said Congressman Posey. “He was a tireless advocate for those who suffered from kidney disease – when I was serving in the State Legislature it was not uncommon to see Richard walking the halls with kidney patients advocating for common sense fixes in flawed laws to help make life a little easier. Passing this legislation is an appropriate way to honor Rich’s service to others in our community and remember the example he set.”

At the age of 23 and at a highpoint in his professional surfing career, Richard fell ill and was told by doctors that he would die if he did not get a kidney transplant. Aided by his twin brother Phil Salick, who was his first kidney donor, Richard recovered but was told all physical sports were out of the question.

After a year of recovery, Richard developed a unique padding system to protect his transplanted kidney and went on to win surfing contests and even proudly displayed one of his trophies at the dialysis unit at Shands Hospital in Gainesville, Florida to give other patients hope.

Richard and his twin brother Phil organized surfing events to benefit those on dialysis. Every year these events grew larger and larger and culminated into a surf festival. These events have raised millions of dollars for the National Kidney Foundation and are some of the largest charitable surfing events in the world.

Richard Salick was the first professional athlete to receive a transplant and return to his sport at a professional level. In 2000 Richard was inducted into the Surfing Hall of Fame and in April of 2008 he was also inducted into the Martial Arts Hall of Fame.

“What made Richard a champion was not the number of trophies he won – which was considerable – but the battles he willingly and personally waged on behalf of others in need,” said Posey.

View Congressman Posey's Floor Speech HERE 

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