Richard Delmas “Dick” Welch, Jr. died surrounded by his family on July 25th. Dick lived a life of perfect service. From his military career to his family and friends, he was well known by all for his giving and compassionate spirit.
Born in Laurel, Mississippi to Richard Delmas Welch and Frankie Mae Smith Welch, Dick grew up in southeastern Mississippi, Jacksonville, Florida and other places where his father, an Army officer, was stationed. After graduating from high school in Fayetteville, North Carolina, he received a Presidential appointment to the U.S. Military Academy where he was a member of the sprint football squad and the class of 1959. Upon his graduation, he married his sweetheart since junior high, Margaret Jean Miller. Margaret and Dick began their married life in Nürnberg, Germany where they welcomed their first child, Amy. Their sons, Richard and Jim, were born during separate, brief postings to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in 1964 and 1968.
Dick spent 20 years as a Field Artillery officer in the U.S. Army, with assignments to troop units in Germany and Vietnam, instructor tours at West Point and the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and analytical and management jobs in the Washington, DC area. His Washington service focused on the Army’s early attempts to automate support for command and control functions. In the midst of his Army service, Dick earned a masters degree in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics from the University of Illinois. After Army retirement, he continued this work as an analyst and project manager with SRA International in Northern Virginia.
Margaret and Dick spent 22 years entertaining family and friends at Duck Cove, their home on the Tred Avon River in Easton, MD. The best mornings at Duck Cove began with Grandpa’s signature Big Breakfast of pancakes, bacon and eggs. Duck Cove served as a weekend retreat from 1992 until 2003 when Margaret and Dick moved to Easton full-time. Over the years, he took great care in teaching his children and grandchildren to swim, sail, canoe, fish and pick crabs.
During their time in Easton, Dick was an active member of Christ Church, St. Peters Parish, where he taught Sunday school and served as Chair of the Building Committee. Dick spent nine years on the Pickering Creek Board of Trustees, met regularly with Poetry at Noon, a poetry reading and discussion group, worked to establish a low-income addiction recovery program, and spent as much time fishing as he possibly could.
Dick is survived by his wife of 59 years, Margaret Miller Welch, their children, Amy and Stuart Baskin of Tyler, TX, Richard and Jill Welch of Philadelphia, PA, Jim Welch and Kathy Reinsel of Springfield, OH; four grandchildren: Whitney Baskin, Sarah Baskin, Richard Welch, and Mary Welch; and one sister, Priscilla and Dale Hendren of Virginia Beach, VA.
A memorial service will be held at Christ Church Episcopal, Alexandria, Virginia on Saturday, August 4th at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. A graveside service will be held at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Christ Church Episcopal, Easton, Maryland, the Pickering Creek Audubon Center in Easton, Maryland or the charity of your choice.
Pickering Creek Audubon Center
11450 Audubon Lane, Easton MD 21601
Christ Church Easton
111 Harrison Street, Easton MD 21601