|Birth: ||Feb. 10, 1930|
|Death: ||Feb. 10, 2010|
Richard Crawford was born on the Milner Farm located on the Jerry City Road in Bloomdale, Wood County, Ohio on February 10, 1930. He was the sixth of seven children born to Nita Marie (Lee) Jun 19, 1894 – Mar 3, 1969 and Otho Trenton Crawford Oct 20, 1890 – Nov 24, 1952; they were married on Oct 19, 1916 in Wood County, Ohio. Richard's siblings were Alice Mae Jan 2, 1918 – Apr 25. 2006, Bertha Leota Feb 9, 1920 – Sep 30, 1995, Clifford Dale Mar 18, 1922 – Nov 16, 2001, Dallas Lee May 31, 1924 – Apr 4, 1997, Bettie Irene Oct 31, 1927 – Nov 10, 2007 and Esther Mar 28, 1932.
He was raised in the rural farming community of Wood County residing on several different farms; the Milner, Soule, Elarton and Buckingham Farms.
One of Richards more pleasurable child hood memories was in the summer of 1947 when he; along with his sister Bettie and cousin Martha Pauline Lee; traveled by train to Chicago, then on to Cohasset, Minnesota and spent the summer on Lake Gould with their Aunt Orpha (Lee) & Uncle John Binger.
During his High School years he worked as a labor on some of the local farms as well as pumping fuel at the local Market/filling station (I believe in West Mill Grove).
Richard graduated from the Montgomery Township School in Wayne, Ohio in May 1948. For their senior Class trip they traveled to Washington DC and New York City. During the course of his high school years he lettered in sports on the Track and Field Team. Dad had told me that he preferred running cross country.
On October 11, 1948, Richard entered into the United States Navy in Detroit, Michigan, and then traveled on ward to complete his basic training at Great Lakes Training Center. After completion of basic training Richard then proceeded to Norfolk, Virginia where he reported aboard the USS Mississippi EAG-128 in January of 1949 serving his enlistment during the Korean Conflict. From mid February through mid June 1951 he received orders to and completed his training at the Class "A" School for Radioman. The USS Mississippi was a WWII Battleship which was converted over to an Experimental Artillery testing ship. The ship would usually leave port on Monday and go out and fire artillery then return to port on Friday. The ships command would take their data of their firing and forward it to the Norco Naval Weapons Center in Norco, California for analysis. Dad spoke of having port calls in New York, Carolina and Florida.
While stationed on the Mississippi Richard met Barbara Arlene Atkins; Apr 16, 1933 – Jan 7, 2007; daughter of Charles Mathew Atkins; Sep 9, 1898 Va. – Dec 31, 1954 Va; & Mamie Woods; Nov 22, 1900 – Jun 27, 1974 Va; and on May 24, 1952 married in Elizabeth City, Pasquotank County, North Carolina.
On October 11, 1952 Richard received his separation from active service and at some point shortly after returned to Ohio with his new wife.
In Nov 1952 before the passing of his father, Richard received from him two of the family heirlooms; the pocket watch of Ortho's and another of his father Simpson Grant. Richard questioned why he should receive both and Otho expressed that he had no concerns about Richard parting with them. Prior to the passing of Richard he in turn passed them down to his sons, one to Dale and the other to Mark.
Richard gained employment with Bendix in Fostoria; which sold to Ford Auto Lite, making spark plugs; maintaining a residence on Center St then moving to Sandusky St.
In 1953 he started his family with the birth of his first; of 6; child Roger Martin Jun 13, 1953 – Mar 9, 1999, Dale 1958, Mark Steven Dec 11, 1956, Pamela 1957, Wayne 1959 and the last Delbert 1966.
In 1957 he moved his family again to Madison St, Sandusky Ohio where he gained employment with Ford Motor Company later moving to Hancock St.
Again with more lay offs, in May 1960 Richard decided to move west for the "California dream". He hitched up the U-haul trailer to his '59 Ford and left his wife and 5 children on the farm in the care of his widowed mother and found his way to "Route 66". Unknown to Richard at the time, this would turn out to be the last time he saw his mother alive.
Richard stayed with a friend from his high school days; Bob Wieker; in Riverside until he obtained a small apartment in La Sierra on Mitchell Street. He gained employment with Brown's a die cast plant in Corona and in August 1960 left the task of hauling their 5 children; ranging from 7 years thru 15 months old; to his wife Barbara on the 3 day train ride from Fostoria, arriving in San Bernardino. Shortly after their arrival Richard rented a house on Sylvan St. in Riverside.
In 1961 Richard was able to provide for the purchase of the family home on Pembroke in Riverside;
Around 1963 Richard went to work for Kaiser Steel in Fontana, California joining the International Association of Machinists.
In 1962 Richard's sister and brother in law; Bettie and Richard Klingler; moved to California from Ohio with her two sons. At some point uncle Richard Klingler started to encourage Richard Crawford that he should try and go to work for the Postal Service and in February, 1966 dad was hire as a part time substitute letter carrier.
What this required was that dad had to make himself available for the Postal Service when ever they called; which was only 2 or 3 days a week in the beginning; and meant he had to quite working for Kaiser Steel. He took another part time job working during the nights as a clerk/cashier in a local liquor store. This went on for better than a year; as more time elapsed he did received more hours; before he was able to obtain a route of his own.
Years later when I was visiting Aunt Bettie and uncle Richard in Montana, uncle Richard told me; as he was chuckling; that mom was so angry with him for encouraging dad to go to work for the Postal Service. After all the years of lay offs dad had finally established himself with a company with steady employment, good benefits and Uncle Richard was encouraging dad to quit.
From the beginning of his arrival in California, Richard always enjoyed going on day trips to the mountains, desert or beaches. We never seemed to have a lot of material things, but always seemed to be enough. Richard always seemed to have the money for a picnic lunch and a tank of gas. We would go everywhere and this continued thru the years. Richard loved to explore new places!
In about 1962 he started to get his sons involved in Cub Scouting. He was completely committed to scouting experience; he sat on panels of Board of Reviews, served as a Committee Member and Assistant Scout Master.
Richard and Buzz Ensign teamed up and took over a failing Cub Scout Pack of a couple dozen children. Between Richard's motivation and Buzz's enthusiasm and artistic abilities they grew it into about 100 children; the largest in the county. The local council believed it to be to large and wanted to split it into two packs but Richard and Buzz were persistent in their efforts to let it remain as one.
They centered the pack on the Indian theme making their own Indian costumes with help of his sister Bettie; Richard's to include a full length war bonnet. They would have their monthly meetings to consist of pot luck dinners with the family members of the scout's invited, sing a longs, skits and inexpensive theatrical productions, pinewood derby races, award ceremonies, slide presentations as well as involving the Pack in community and conservation projects.
This naturally led into Boy Scouting where they both remained committed. With the Boy Scouts they turned the theme to the outdoors, became a back packing scout troop with monthly overnight trips 2, 3 or 4 day and several week long trips; whatever length of time individual's schedules would permit.
Dad would search out and research new locations; sometimes first as a family unit then the scouts, provide transportation and participated in most of the back packing trips. On many occasions, due to his work schedule, he would drive us to our starting location on a Friday afternoon or evening, return home to work on Saturday then return again to complete a 5 – 10 mile back pack trip by himself to finish the weekend camping with us. Where it was possible that he could drive in he would show up in the evening usually with gallons of ice cream or cold soft drinks for all, which is a pleasant experience to be able to sit under the stars in the middle of the desert after a day in the heat with only the water that you could carry.
In Southern California there are 11 peaks over 10,000 feet in elevation; the largest being San Gorgonio at 14,700 feet; which we packed all multiple times. One such trip entailed the topping of 9 peaks in a single weekend; another was a 30 mile packing trip over the mountain tops within 3 consecutive days. In 1973 he was able to help send two of his sons to Farragut State Park, Idaho; by Lake Coeur d'Alene; for the National (West) Jamboree. He so very much wanted to attend.
In the summer of 1966 one of our family day trips turned into a 4 mile day hike across the ridge lines, down the canyon walls and through the washes to a place called Hidden Springs in the middle of the desert west of Joshua Tree National Monument. While we were out there Richard found a piece of petrified wood about 25 pounds in weight that he just had to have. That day we had no packs with us because we were only going for a drive so what we carried was in our hands. The hike was considered relatively easy and the sons begrudgingly agreed to help carry it out. Delbert was born in April of that year and we were already taking turns carrying him in a bassinette along with gallon jugs of water.
Richard remained in Scouting thru the mid 1970's with his youngest son and after all these years I believe that he enjoyed the Scouting experience as much as his sons if not more.
In 1969 Richard, Barbara and their youngest child; Delbert; made their first rushed trip back to Ohio to attend his mothers funeral. They proceeded driving on to Virginia to visit the Atkins family first stopping in West Virginia visiting Barbara's sister; Christine and her family. From Norfolk area they continued on through Georgia and the Gulf states to return in California. This trip was accomplished with the help of his sister Bettie and the Ensigns our family's friends by allowing the rest of his children to be farmed out in their care.
In July 1974, Richard again made another rushed trip by himself back to Ohio to attend his Uncle Cleo Crawford's funeral. I was already in Ohio for the summer vacation and dad was proud to show me around to the different farms and introduce me to his family and friends.
In the late ‘80s early ‘90s Richard made his; I believe; only planned vacation back to Ohio. He enjoyed these trips and wished there could have been more.
In 1987 Richard & Barbara divorced and in 1989 became proud grand parents with the first of the 3 grandsons from their daughter; Kristopher 1989, Timothy 1993, and Matthew 1995.
In 1994, Richard had a mild stroke which he recovered from and returned to work before the second disabled him and forced him into retirement after 28 years of service to the Postal Service. Evan after this he was still determined to stay on his own. His right arm and leg had a partial paralysis and did not prevent him from taking 4 or 5 mile walks everyday.
Richard was a diabetic and with the passing of time started to have a forgetful mind which became a problem when he started forgetting to take his insulin; several times going into diabetic comas, being hospitalized and eventually being the reason he was placed into an assisted living convalescence. He had partial vision in one eye only and eventually needed a walker. For about the last 10 years of his life he was bound to the use of a wheel chair.
Richard was hospitalized for the last few weeks of his life, due mostly to pneumonia. Mid morning of his 80th birthday before all his children arrived for a small birthday celebration, he began to pass in my presence. One of my younger brothers arrived just moments before Richards's final breath. Richard had always said that he wanted everything possible done to keep him in this plain and here I was again faced with the choice of disregarding my fathers wishes. His lungs were about 75% filled with fluids, bed ridden for who remembers exactly how long and would probably remain so. I told my father I loved him and that it was alright for him to go and then gave the doctors orders to let him pass.
This was on February 10, 2010 and we chose to wait until June 30 to hold Richards services so that his three grandsons could attend the services from Virginia. Military honors were Held; surprisingly to me, conducted by a Naval Captain. I think Richard would have like them.
Richard was very grateful he had a loving daughter in law; Lynn. In today's world time is in great demand. She handled all of his affairs and on Thursdays would go get him and go to the doctors, mall, and stores; dinner or just sit in the local parks; he enjoyed these moments and would express it so.
Richard; due to his paralysis; was never able to fulfill his dream of retirement and travel back to his birth place to visit his family and friends.
He was always curious of the Crawford's from the past but due to the expense and time never could pursue the adventure. He had thought that they originated from Kentucky and was surprised to find out differently. I hope this memorial will please him.
He was a strict man and believed in corporal punishment; which I can not contest; and would openly give his permission to other supervising adult's such as principals, teachers, family members or friend's parents to do the same. He was reasonably fair, tried to teach what was morally right and wrong, taught to be truthful for that reflected on ones integrity, to take responsibility for your actions and to learn to always take care of yourself because at some point in your life there would be no one there to help you.
He raised six children in a time of many swift social changes and in a conversation with him years later he stated he wished he had done some things differently regarding his children but was content with the results.
He neither smoked nor indulged in alcohol and as a child I only witnessed him a handful of times partaking in a toast at weddings or holidays. Not until the late ‘80s did I ever see him have a glass of wine with dinner. When I had questioned him on why, he stated that when he was a child he would walk to town on a Friday or Saturday night usually for the nickel picture show and watched to many times the adults coming out of the bars brawling and fighting. He vowed that he would never allow anyone to see him act in that manner.
He was not a very religious man, spoke of going to church as a child but to what frequency I do not know. He would not oppose it and never prevented his children from attending church services alone or with their friends' families. He marveled at the creators' great outdoors and loved to go exploring within it.
Richard was preceded in passing by his eldest son, Roger Martin Crawford June 13, 1953 – March 9, 1999.
Peace Be With You On
Your New Exploration!
Otho Trenton Crawford (1890 - 1952)
Nita Marie Lee Crawford (1894 - 1969)
Barbara Arlene Atkins Crawford (1933 - 2007)*
Roger Martin Crawford (1953 - 1999)*
Alice Mae Crawford Bloom (1918 - 2008)*
Bertha Leota Crawford Bloom (1920 - 1995)*
Clifford Dale Crawford (1922 - 2001)*
Dallas Lee Crawford (1924 - 1997)*
Richard Crawford (1930 - 2010)
Riverside National Cemetery
Plot: SECTION 62C SITE 126
Maintained by: Mark Crawford
Originally Created by: International Wargraves ...
Record added: Jul 04, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 72638349