Richard S. Earley, 79, of Coventry, RI, formerly of Leominster, MA, died Sunday, June 5, at home surrounded by his loving family.
Richard was born January 23, 1943, in Bellingham, Washington, son of the late Victor R. and Audrey (Gwinnett) Earley. He was fortunate to have many wonderful childhood memories of competitive roller skating, swimming and working on & driving so many Model A’s. He was also an accomplished drummer. Richard received his undergraduate degree from Humboldt State University where he was a successful high diver, becoming the first ever four-year letterman in diving at Humboldt. He continued his education at Assumption College receiving a Master’s Degree in Special Education. Richard enlisted in the Army and served in the Army Security Agency from 1967 until his Honorable Discharge in 1971. He was stationed in Asmara, Eritrea. From his base in East Africa, he was sent on many special assignments to Jordan, Turkey & Vietnam. Following his Service, Richard served as Head of the Perkins School in Lancaster, MA. He later became the Veterans’ Service Officer in Leominster from 1997 until 2004 before continuing his career with the Massachusetts State Veterans Services Office in Boston & Providence.
Sailing was Richard’s passion. He and his wife Mary, loved time spent aboard their boat “Sojourner Truth”.
He leaves his wife of 33 years, Mary (Pratt) Earley; six children Sharron Albert, Linda Garneau, William Earley, Mary Ellen McGraw, Nancy Earley and Stephen Earley; seven grandchildren, Lisa (Albert) Bishop, Trisha (Garneau) Paquette, Danny McGraw, Matthew McGraw, Zachary McGraw, William Earley, Jr and Brandon Earley; three siblings Daniel Earley, David Earley of Bellingham, WA and Susan Griffith of Carson City, NV; many great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
Richard was predeceased by his sister. Mary Margaret Earley.
A Memorial service will be held Friday July 15, at 2:00 PM at the Leominster Veterans Center, 100 West St. Leominster, MA 01453. Committal services will be held Friday, September 16, at 2:00 P.M. at the MA National Cemetery, Connery Ave., Bourne.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 116 Scholarship Fund, PO Box 294, Leominster, MA 01453.
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