In Memory of




Obituary for Frederic "Ric" Bernhardt

The day the music died; but just for a moment to reflect.

We lost a musically talented, “one of a kind” sweet, kind and generous soul: a quintessentially talented Detroit Music Man. He was a dutiful son, who tirelessly cared for his mother, Jackie, the last 4 years of her life.
Fredric (Ric) Lyle Bernhardt, residing in West Bloomfield, Michigan left this world on April 26th at Henry Ford Hospital in West Bloomfield, Michigan.

There will be a private graveside service on Friday May 1st at the Beth Kehillah Cemetery in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey.

Ric will join his beloved parents. He will be buried alongside his beloved Mother, Jackie, and Father, Mortimer. He is near Aunt Clare Levy and Uncles, Dodie and Mitzie Goorland.

Forever remembered by close friends, Chuck Berk, Keith Pomeroy, Norton Chaiken, Leslie Pinkus, and Carol Rocheleau, his soulmate, companion and guardian angel.

He is survived by his loving brother, Gregory Bernhardt, and sister-in-law, Jodi Bernhardt, of New York City;
The best little big friend, he so adored, his nephew, Hunter Michael Bernhardt, and his beloved niece, Justine Sarah Bernhardt, of New York City.

Additionally, he is fondly remembered by his cousins, whom he so loved and admired; Michael Sukin and Leeds Levy and Beverly Gordon, Mother-in-Law of Greg, for whom he had a special fondness.

He is additionally survived by his former wife, Gail Bernhardt and her daughter that he helped raise, Laura Labovich of Bethesda, Maryland.

Ric attended and loved his days and many friends at Oak Park High School in Oak Park, Michigan and Cheshire Academy in Cheshire, Connecticut.

He later attended Oakland University and Wayne State University.

Contributions in his memory may be made to the Holocaust Center, or to Chabad at the Shore, or to the Detroit Institute of the Arts,


So much sorrow. It is all around and then it hits home.

I lost my dear brother, confidant and friend Fredric (Ric) Lyle Bernhardt at @6pm Sunday evening at Henry Ford Hospital in West Bloomfield, Michigan.

No playbook has prepared any of us for what we are currently experiencing.

This is even more so for losing a sibling. You live contemporaneously with them. Their life mirrors your own lifelong experiences and your physical appearance connects you.

Ric was transported to the hospital by his dear friend Carol and her son Joshua a week earlier. He was suddenly confronted with myriad life-threatening ailments. While testing negative for the COVID plague, he was nonetheless treated as being positive.

Ric lived, loved and breathed music. He was that rare individual who had no interest in monetizing his considerable musical talents.

As a gifted guitar teacher, musician, promoter, manager and mentor; he did it for the ‘LOVE OF THE GAME”. How many people can say that?

So many have been lost or are currently ill. There is a general malaise associated with the loss of our daily routines.

I hope that we can transform the loss of Ric into a new reality of just how important kind, genuine and empathetic people are. Not just the “movers and shakers” that generate most of our attention and respect. Instead let us make sure that those like Ric, people who are simply good and kind, are also people we value and respect.
No spiritual or thinking individual can let out current circumstances go unexamined. Let us look inward. Hopefully, we can repair the world and whatever deficiencies exist in our lives.