R.A.D. Morton III, age 62, of San Diego and El Paso, died unexpectedly on Jan. 19, 2020, at Scripps Memorial Hospital of complications due to diabetes.
There is no one more surprised than R.A.D. that he is gone.
R.A.D. thrived at living, he gave his all and he gave to all. He commanded a room and filled it with laughter and love. R.A.D. was fortunate to have found an exquisite woman as his lifelong mate, Jill Kremm Morton, his beloved wife of 23 years. Their 23rd anniversary was Jan. 18, 2020, he is no doubt very disappointed in not being able to prepare one of his legendary gourmet feasts for Jill to celebrate his good fortune of a wise and gentle woman by his side.
He looked out for his brothers and sisters and honored his mother and father. R.A.D. always stood up for the underdog.
Ever the quiet leader, we knew he was always there for us. He loved animals and children. He took tender care of his ranch animals growing up in El Paso. He spent hours with his Quarter Horse, Thunder Bill. (He even slept in his stall on some cold nights). He trained and showed horses throughout West Texas and New Mexico with his mother, Alyn, and sister, Margaret.
R.A.D. was a brilliant dancer. We all wanted a spot on the dance floor with him. He made us all better.
When R.A.D. wasn’t building businesses around the world, he was sharing his famous “Mexican word of the day,” revealing his Chihuahuan roots. On the 18th birthday of his niece, Sara Maria, he had 18 pizzas delivered to her boarding school. She knew exactly who sent them. His godson Austin loved R.A.D.’s tales from afar, and his nephews Max and Adin giggled the entire time they were with him, much to R.A.D.’s glee.
R.A.D. was one of six children. He was born to Dunny (R.A.D. Morton, M.D. Jr.) and Alyn Brown Morton, three years after his beautiful sister, Priscilla Anne Morton. Following R.A.D. were his boisterous twin sisters, Margaret Morton Krasovec and Maria Morton Woody. As if he wasn’t in enough trouble with four confident girls in the house, along came Andrew and Arthur, another set of twins to further torment R.A.D. He became the jolly leader and the gentle protector of all.
R.A.D. graduated from New Mexico Military Institute and Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado, where he became a legendary jokester and led his fellow merry men on escapades involving the city water reservoir for summer swims, downhill through the trees in deep powder, cliff jumping at Navajo Lake and other activities too ‘rich’ to be published.
Professionally, R.A.D. had the ambition and drive to attract attention. He began his career with the Midway Group and then went onto Trammell Crow. In 1988, he founded The Morton Group in West Texas and Northern Mexico involved in industrial and retail development. Security Capital Group engaged R.A.D. in a variety of leadership roles throughout the United States. With R.A.D.’s international experience in Mexico, he was tapped to lead acquisitions in Australia and New Zealand.
He and Jill relocated to Sydney in 1999 where R.A.D. was managing director and CEO of Millers Storage Group. R.A.D. and Jill fit right into the Aussie lifestyle. R.A.D. quickly became popular in their neighborhood of Mosman. He had a favorite bench on Balmoral Beach where he engaged with the locals in financial and political banter while sipping on a cuppa. They made lifelong friends entertaining their mates around his barbie at their beautiful beachside abode. They will forever call Australia their “home away from home.”
When operations were sold to G.E., they made their way back to the U.S. and settled in Jill’s hometown of San Diego. There he founded InterTrust Holdings and Asian Development Group Real Estate with operations in Singapore and China.
R.A.D. and Jill continued to travel the world, including visits to Sydney. They spent special time with Jean and Andy Kremm, Jill’s parents and her three brothers, Steve, Tim and Peter, and their families.
The world has lost an elegant man. He was both sophisticated and down to earth. R.A.D. could and would talk to anybody. Friends and strangers are sharing sweet tales of R.A.D.’s kindnesses.
We were so blessed to have him in our midst, however brief it was. He taught us about humility and grace – and the importance of a pocket square.
We will honor you, R.A.D. by carrying forth your goodness. God speed dear one.
He is survived by his wife Jill Kremm Morton, father R.A.D. Morton M.D., Jr. his wife, Elizabeth Anthony, siblings: Priscilla Morton, wife Paula McMormick, Maria & Darren Woody, children Austin Woody & his wife Meghan Woody & their children James and Ava Grace, Sara Maria Woody and Margaret & Frank Krasovec, brothers Andrew & Elaine Morton, their children Adin and Max, Arthur Morton & Mimi Hinton and many more cherished family, too vast to mention.
The family will hold a private service.
In lieu of flowers R.A.D. would be most amused if you played a prank on a friend and send photos to Jill. R.A.D. would also be keen on a donation to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.