FRIENDSHIP — On Jan. 18, Richard “Dick” Wilshire, 89, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend to many, passed at the Sussman House where he was surrounded by family and friends. While at the Sussman House, he enjoyed sharing stories with family and friends. We were blessed to have the time with him in his last days to express our love and to be there.
Dick was born in Waterville on Sept. 3, 1933, to Thayer Wilshire and Lucille Bangs. He grew up in Waldoboro with his mother and brother, Bob. Dick loved playing basketball and baseball all through his school years. After graduating high school, he went to college at the Wentworth school in Boston for one year before enlisting in the U.S. Army. On March 30, 1957, he married the love of his life Helen Richards. They made their home in Friendship where they raised three boys. His greatest joy was taking his boys fishing, playing ice hockey and teaching them how to hunt. He was always a hard worker which started while he was still in school. He worked at Exxon in Waldoboro for over 30 years, where he would be known for filling up peoples’ cars and telling them they could pay him later when they couldn’t afford a fill. After working at Exxon, he worked at the liquor store in Waldoboro and then at Sylvania until he retired.
Dick volunteered with the Friendship Fire Department and was very involved with the veterans, placing flags at the cemetery for several years. He also volunteered for the VFW for the Friendship Sloop Days. Before Friendship Days each year, he would join the other firefighters picking lobster and also may have had a bit for himself. He enjoyed going hand-lining to catch cod off Monhegan with the fire department each year. In 2018, Dick was honored to be the Grand Marshal for Friendship Days.
Dick always had a love of racehorses and never missed a fair over the state of Maine. After retirement he went to work for Dick Bartlett, jogging and working with the harness horses in Windsor, with his favorite horse being Royce Racer. He loved working with the horses and being surrounded by the many others who shared his same passion. When he was done working with the horses, he would take the rest of the day to play cribbage in the barn.
His love for cribbage and competitiveness took him around the state to play in many cribbage tournaments. He was a master at cribbage and his family can attest that he very seldom lost. He would laugh and say, “Jeez, I’m sorry you lost, we’re gonna have to play another one,” and that was usually another four games. The game and love of cribbage continued until his last days.
While growing up, Dick spent time at his aunt and uncle’s camp in Nobleboro, Camp Makaria. Dick and his family spent many summers at the camp which they loved so much. When the summer kids were there, he would take his boys along with the camp kids waterskiing. He many times would grab the kids around Friendship to play ice hockey and on occasion would light lanterns so they could play after dark.
Dick was a very proud grandfather of his two grandsons, Richard and Josh. He loved watching them play sports and occasionally was found umping one of their games. The boys have fond memories of spending time with their Grampy. They often talk about him taking them “heater hunting” which meant riding back roads while sharing snacks and reminding Grampy he had left his blinker on. They also enjoyed trips to Moody’s Diner, spending many overnights and him teaching them to play cribbage.
Anyone that knew Dick knows he was a very caring, loving and easy-going person. There was never a time someone couldn’t call on him. He helped many and never said no. He would give you the shirt off his back. No matter what the circumstances were, he was always happy and had a great smile, and of course we all know his favorite saying, “awful good.” His family was so blessed to be able to do so many things with him over the years and have a lifetime of stories and treasured memories.
Dick was blessed to have a wonderful care team, whom he adored at Damariscotta dialysis before moving to Winship Green Living Facility in Bath. He quickly became very fond of the team at Bath dialysis who treated him wonderfully. He became very comfortable at Winship Green and had amazing staff caring for him. Dick had a special place in his heart for his favorite nurse, Lynn, whom we also adored. She could kid with him and always make him feel better. They shared a very special bond and friendship. Thank you, Lynn, and all the wonderful staff who cared for Dick. We were blessed to have him in a very loving environment, made possible because of each one of you.
From the moment we walked into the Sussman House, you could feel the calm and caring environment. How blessed we were to have the time at the Sussman House to surround Dick with family and friends. Everyone got to share their favorite memories with him and he would chuckle at so many of the stories. He enjoyed all the visits and got so much love while he was there. We want to thank the staff at the Sussman House for all their care.
Dick was predeceased by his beloved wife Helen and son Danny.
Dick is survived by his sons, Douglas of Friendship and Rick and wife Terry of Warren; his grandsons, Richard and Lacey of Union and Josh and his companion Charlene of Friendship; great-grandchildren Madison, Austin and Lindsay; loved one Kayla Wilshire of Friendship; brothers Bob Wilshire of Jefferson and George Bangs of Gorham; as well as many nieces, nephews, cousins and dear friends, Liz Dinsmore, Jerry Laine, Lloyd Gray and Steve and Lorraine Lash.
Dick’s wish was to have a graveside memorial service. The memorial service will be in May with a reception at the Hahn Community Center in Friendship. A notice will be published in the spring with further details.
You are invited to share your online condolences and memories of Richard by visiting their Book of Memories at hallfuneralhomes.com. Arrangements are entrusted to Hall Funeral Home 949 Main St., Waldoboro.