RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Students and staff of George Wythe High School gathered to celebrate the life of former Principal Riddick Parker Jr., who died while riding his bicycle 10 days before the start of the school year.

Parker was riding his bike on the morning of Aug. 19, when he suddenly died. The memorial service celebrating his life was held inside the George Wythe High School auditorium on Thursday.

Richmond Public Schools Superintendent Jason Kamras, acting George Wythe High School Principal James A. Brown, staff and students were in attendance, with speakers sharing how Parker had a positive vision for the school.

Riddick Parker, the principal of George Wythe High School passed away suddenly while riding his bike in August.

“I want to say to Riddick, if he’s listening, we will never forget you and we will always march forward with your vision,” Kamras said during his speech.

“May your soul rest in peace, we will never forget you,” student Shyla Scott said during the service.

Thursday’s service also featured a video tribute to Parker from the George Wythe staff.

Before pursuing a career in education, Parker played in the National Football League as a defensive tackle, attending and playing at the University of North Carolina. He won a Super Bowl when playing for the New England Patriots.