Charles Francis Richter
NEW BERN, NC- Charles Francis Richter, 88, died on July 4.
Mr. Richter was born on September 27, 1930, in Stamford, CT to the late Harry Sr. and Regina (Nurney) Richter. Raised in the Depression by his mother and uncle with his six brothers and sisters, he would go on to live a rich and rewarding life. After school he apprenticed as a tool and die maker but soon chose to follow his first calling, which was to become a Catholic priest. He was ordained at St. John’s Seminary in Boston in 1960. He met his wife, Alice, while serving at St. Stephen’s Parish in Stamford, CT, and soon after he realized his new calling was to be a husband and father. Even though he left the priesthood, Mr. Richter lived a life full of faith.
Mr. Richter was thrilled to marry the love of his life, Alice Dinnar Richter, on February 17, 1973. Mr. and Mrs. Richter were blessed with four children, Dennis, Karyn, Charles, and Christopher. Together they created a loving and lively home in Vermont where he worked as an elementary school teacher, special education teacher, and a driver’s education instructor. Richter was a beloved teacher at Whitingham, VT Elementary School and was known both for being a caring teacher and for always having lemon drops for his students. His four children have countless stories of the fun summer adventures they enjoyed with their Dad since he had every summer off to spend with them.
As a city boy, Mr. Richter grew to appreciate the quieter life of Vermont, surrounded by pet dogs, chickens, and even goats (who always came to him when he called them). He retired from teaching in 1999 but continued to share his love of learning with his children, five grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Mr. Richter was always up for a thoughtful conversation. Whether his children and their spouses wanted to have philosophical, theological or political discussions, his insight was greatly valued and will be sorely missed.
Mr. Richter enjoyed the beautiful vista from their home in Whitingham, VT, for many years, but after one too many blizzard-filled winters he and Alice chose to move south to North Carolina for more pleasant weather.
During his retirement, he enjoyed traveling, volunteering, working as a justice of the peace, and time with his children and grandchildren. He and Chris enjoyed a shared interest in politics, and he loved spending afternoons helping Crystal, Zachary, and Adam with their schoolwork. Charlie and Katie enjoyed many heated games of Crazy 8s and “Guess Who” with Papa. He was a proud and loving great-grandpa to Braelyn.
Mr. Richter wanted his children to remember, “Family is your most important asset and should be preserved throughout life.” With all the hats that he wore throughout his life, he always put his family first, and his family will be forever grateful for that.
Mr. Richter is survived by his beloved wife of 47 years, Alice Dinnar Richter, and their children Dennis Richter and his wife Christine, of Wilmington, VT; Karyn Jones and her husband Richard, of New Bern; Charles Richter and his wife Molly, of Wakefield, MA; and Christopher Richter, of New Bern. He leaves his grandchildren Crystal Bell, her husband, Dylan, and their daughter Braelyn, of South Newfane, VT and Zachary, Adam, Charlie, and Katie Richter, and his sister Mildred Downing, of Tequesta, FL. He was preceded in death by his two brothers, Harry and Francis Richter, and by his three sisters, Jean McGrath, Kate Vigliotti, and Regina “Babe” Andrews.
There will be two services to celebrate Mr. Richter’s life. A funeral mass was Thursday, July 11 at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in New Bern. The second, which will include the burial of his ashes, will be at Our Lady of Fatima Church in Wilmington, VT in September.
In lieu of flowers please enjoy some lemon drops, play board games with your children and grandchildren, or make a donation in Mr. Richter’s memory to Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Wilmington, VT.