ADAMS CENTER, NY — The funeral service for Richard Bruce Edwards will be 1:00 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021, at the Reed & Benoit Funeral Home. Burial will follow the service in Sackets Harbor Military Cemetery.
Calling hours will precede the service at the funeral home beginning at 11:00 a.m. Please wear a mask and observe social distancing if attending.
Richard passed away Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021, at Hospice of Jefferson County. He was 77 years old.
He was born Feb. 23, 1944, in Potsdam, a son to Marlyn and Germaine (Deshaies) Edwards. Born Richard, he was known in childhood as Bruce, taking on Richard during his years of service, Ed during his college days, and later Richard or Dick to friends and colleagues.
Following his high school graduation from Norwood-Norfolk Central High School Richard enlisted with the United States Air Force in 1961. Richard served four years and was honorably discharged in November of 1965.
In January of 1966 he enrolled in Potsdam State. He graduated in 1969 with a degree in education.
He married Eileen Withers June 28, 1969, and accepted his first teaching position later that year at Keene Valley Central teaching Social Studies to grades 7-12. In 1973 he accepted a position as a history teacher with the Watertown City School District. He became a teacher during a time when co-workers created a real sense of community. He and his family have fond memories of faculty Christmas parties, picnics, and retirement parties as well as lasting friendships between colleagues and their families. Mr. Edwards retired from Watertown High School in June 2001.
Richard had a dry sense of humor that wasn’t for everyone. With a love of travel and history, he was a wealth of knowledge and was always willing to share if you were interested. He loved nothing more than a good novel and a clean red Jeep. Definitely known less for his golf swing and bowling scores, he was better known for his mud parties and the hospitality suites with “The other Dick”. He had a habit of taking on hobbies; snowshoeing, boating, skiing, 4-wheeling… mainly for bragging rights and so he could tell you exactly how to do something when you least wanted his expertise.
He was a jack of many trades and master of everything if you asked him. A carpenter that could build anything and became known as “Sawman” to a group of friends always eager and willing to work together on various projects each summer.
Richard was a member of the Adams Center Sportsman’s Club (serving as Treasurer) and Sackets Harbor American Legion Post 1757. He was also an active member of NYSUT and later Jeff-Lewis Retiree Council in Watertown, as well as RC9 of Northern New York. Richard served as President of the Board of Directors of Northern Credit Union for 15 years, volunteered at Flower Memorial Library, & coordinated and led several student educational trips to England with EF Tours as well as “People to People” tour of the Soviet Union in 1989. During his retirement he assisted with “Whiz Quiz”, creating questions and judging.
Surviving besides his wife, Eileen, are his children, Rachel Edwards, Pennsylvania, Kristin and Manny Therrien, Adams Center; his grandchildren (who affectionately referred to him as “Grumpy Grandpa” which he accepted like a badge of honor), Drew Paluch, Ryan Paluch; and his siblings, Dale Edwards of Florida, Michael (Dolores) Edwards of Florida, and Beth Enslow of Norwood.
We will choose to remember the man he was and the things he did in earlier years. And when all is said and done, the irony would not have been lost on him that his “evil daughter” ended up penning his obituary.
Donations may be made in his memory to Hospice of Jefferson County, 1398 Gotham Street, Watertown, NY 13601 -or- South Jefferson Rescue Squad, 38 Main Street, Adams, New York 13605.
Condolences may be made online at reedbenoit.com
Arrangements are with Reed & Benoit Funeral Home, Inc.