Richard K. Staples
January 25, 1938 - March 4, 2022
Service Date: May 20, 2022
At Richard's request, a graveside service with military honors will be held on Friday, May 20, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. at the Highland Annex Cemetery in Limerick.
Richard K. Staples, 84, passed away on March 4, 2022, peacefully at his home with family by his side.
He was born at his childhood home on January 25, 1938, in Limerick, the son of Harley and Alice (Morin) Staples. Richard attended school in Limerick and graduated from Limerick High School class of 1955. He attended Nasson College in Springvale for 2 years before joining the U.S. Air Force in 1957. He completed Aircraft Mechanics School and was stationed in Dover, Delaware. Throughout his 4 years, he traveled to Africa and Greenland. In 1961, he was discharged, and moved back to Limerick where he fell in love with a former schoolmate, Charlene (Hubbard) Bowman.
Richard and Charlene were married on September 28, 1963 and built their home in the lower field of his parents. Richard raised Connie Bowman as his own daughter, and together, Richard and Charlene had 4 more children.
After returning to Limerick, Richard worked at FR Carroll on the concrete forming crew for several years before taking over the chicken business from his father. For 18 years Richard was a successful poultry farmer, raising chickens for Hillcrest Foods, Inc. He worked in the concrete industry for George Morrison, and had many self-employed opportunities in carpentry, concrete, and greenhouse wholesale.
Richard loved history and baseball. He played every position, except catcher. His fondest moments as a child were playing baseball with cousins and friends in their homemade baseball diamond. Richard planted and cared for large vegetable gardens that fed the family throughout the year. He also raised his own cattle for meat, and pigs from time to time.
Richard was a member of the St. Matthews Catholic Parish and an usher for many years. He was heavily involved in the construction of the new church building and used his knowledge of concrete work to put in the foundation and sidewalks, something he often reminisced about whenever he entered 8:00 a.m. mass right up into January 2022. He enjoyed seeing relatives and friends each week.
Richard was hard working, but also loved to have fun. He was an avid golfer, traveled throughout New England playing in tournaments, and was a member at Indian Mound Golf Course in Ossipee, NH. His love of flowers could be seen throughout his yard with creative displays where people would slow down and try to catch a glimpse of a beautiful waterfall of impatiens draped over his stonewall from a tilted wheelbarrow. After his wife passed, he completed a water garden on his front lawn in her memory. He put smiles on many faces with his beautiful large wooden Christmas characters lit up during the holiday season and his, “Have a Nice Day” sign near the road.
His green thumb continued with a greenhouse operation where he planted annuals from seed, grew them into gorgeous flowers that were later sold down at Nature’s Way Greenery. He also made wooden cemetery baskets, wooden windows, and Christmas garland by the yard. Every year, he would place the garland around the Main Street Band Stand for the holiday season.
He loved his community and gave back quietly by doing simple things around town. He and Charlene would put the Christmas lights on the trees at Tibbets Park for the annual Christmas Tree Lighting. Without being asked, he maintained the grass in the Baptist Society Church Cemetery, the grass near the Luther Moore building on Main Street, and the cemetery next door to his childhood home. In 2005 he was awarded a bronze citizenship medal for community service in Limerick for his cemetery care taking.
His carpentry skills helped build several houses and buildings in town including the fire station and the Boy Scout building. He was also a member of the Building Committee that built the new Massabesic High School in 1969. In the 90s, he enjoyed putting together extravagant floats for the annual Founders Day Parades and would have a large tarp up in his yard to conceal his creation until people saw it coming down the road in the parade.
After retiring, Richard loved splitting and selling firewood by the cord and enjoyed time spent outdoors. He loved his children and gave so much to them by helping each one through his knowledge of building and helping to build their dream homes. His love for future generations was apparent early on when he purchased over 40 acres of land to deed to his children, grandchildren, and future generations, so that they could enjoy a family lot of their own, just as he had done.
Unfortunately, Richard lost the love of his life too soon. Charlene passed away in Oct 2011 after a short diagnosis of Pancreatic Cancer. He stayed busy splitting wood, mowing the lawn, and maintaining cemeteries. After 10 years of missing his little pinch-pinch, he began to withdraw from daily life and decided in his mind that it was time to see her again. He said his goodbye’s and many I love you’s to his family before taking his final breaths peacefully at his home.
He was predeceased by his parents, Harley and Alice (Morin), his brother, William “Bill” Staples, his beloved wife of 48 years, Charlene (Hubbard) Bowman Staples, and son-in-law Forrest “Ed” Howe III.
He is survived by five children: Connie Bowman, Cindy Staples, Sandra Howe with fiancé Michael Riche, Shirley Keller with husband Kurt, and Scott Staples; and seven grandchildren: Emily Donahue with husband Jeff, Katherine Utz, Stephanie Howe, Samantha Staples, Ryan Howe, Allie Staples, and Brianna Keller.
At Richard’s request, a graveside service with military honors will be held on May 20, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. at the Highland Cemetery Annex in Limerick, Maine.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Limerick Baptist Society Church Restoration, P.O. Box 359, Limerick, ME 04048.
The Autumn Green Funeral Home is respectfully handling arrangements.