Our Dad, Richard Don (known to friends and family as Dick) has had a wonderful life. He grew up in Bridgeport, Ct, the youngest of three sons to Morris and Belle Don, with a helping hand from his beloved Aunt Goldie. In high school at his piano teacher’s house, he met his adored wife, Joyce (Gilday) and was happily married to her for 64 years. They had two children, Lea (Stein) and Judith (Bayersdorfer) and built a life in Manchester, Ct. Mom loved teaching; Dad worked as a pharmacist but his passions were classical music and swimming in the ocean. Once the kids were grown and the dog died (Mom’s phrasing), they spent their free time traveling the globe often with their best friends, Sue and Gerry Hardy. They moved into a retirement community at The Arbors of Hopbrook and followed their retirement pursuits. Dad involved himself with the East of the River hiking club as well as breakfast on Fridays with his friends, going to many concerts, opera, biking, hiking, kayaking and practicing the piano. Dad loved making new friends and helping anyone who seemed to need help. Some examples are recording readings for the blind, clearing trails for AMC, making late night deliveries to his elderly patients. He talked to Everyone! (Paul Newman at Tanglewood, his wife, Joanne Woodward at The Met, Arthur Rubinstein (great tickets!), Joshua Bell (in the elevator) to his family’s chagrin. Most of all, he loved his family and his dog Max. Besides his daughters and son in law, Mitch Bayersdorfer, he leaves his granddaughters Lindsey (and Michael) Antonacci and Rachel Bayersdorfer. He was very fond of his cousins David, Michael and Maria Karpalow and his niece Sheri Don. He had so many friends that they can’t all be acknowledged but we would like to name Barry and Renny Resnick, Nola Currie, Ken Wasserman, Betsy Kirk, Ann Hayman, Henry Paul, Tom, Cindy and Heather Hynes. We are grateful for support from the staff at The Arbors and the amazing care from Baystate Hospice. Funeral services with military honors will be held on Wednesday, January 12, 2022 at 11AM at the Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, 1390 Main Street, Agawam, MA. His wife Joyce G. Don who passed away on May14, 2016 will also be laid to rest at this time. New England Funeral & Cremation Center, LLC, 25 Mill Street, Springfield, MA has been entrusted with the arrangements. Please visit Richard’s memorial page at www.nefcc.net to extend condolences.
Published by Hartford Courant on Jan. 12, 2022.