John D. Richardson

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Obituaries in Brockton, MA | The Enterprise

We are saddened to announce the passing of John David Richardson, 86, on December 17, 2023 at Good Samaritan Hospital in Brockton, Massachusetts surrounded by his loving family.

John was born January 28,1937 at Brockton Hospital. He was a proud native of West Bridgewater, Massachusetts where he resided most of his life. His parents Harry G. and Ellen (Linehan) Richardson built their home on Walnut Street where they raised their only son. He loved to talk about how he attended a one room schoolhouse behind his home for his early education. He was a member of the 4H club, raising goats in his backyard.

John graduated as a member of the class of 1955 from West Bridgewater High School. As a young man he loved driving to Duxbury beach in his beach buggy with friends. After high school he worked as an electrician at Brockton Edison until he enrolled at The University of Massachusetts, Amherst as a Forestry major in the Stockbridge School of Agriculture, graduating in 1958. He met his wife, Gail Dunford, on a double date. They were both with other people that night but soon discovered they were meant to be together.

After college John enlisted in a 6 month plus 6 year Army Reserve program. He then returned to Brockton Edison (Eastern Utilities) where he worked in the field as an electrician, retiring in 1996. Like his grandfather, John was a lifelong firefighter. At a young age he started volunteering at the West Bridgewater Fire Department. During the blizzard of 1978 when most were staying home and trying to keep warm John was out all night, helping the Edison company and the town. He was never one to hesitate in a crisis. When a neighbor’s home in West Bridgewater caught fire, John was at the home rescuing his neighbor through an upstairs window before fire trucks arrived.

Primarily stationed in Woods Hole, Falmouth, John served in the Coast Guard Reserve from 1970 to 1997. He did not talk much about the trauma and rescues he participated in, instead he focused on his love of coastal New England and lighthouses. When visiting Martha’s Vineyard he would prioritize racing across the island to catch a sunset in Menemsha harbor. He was always content sitting looking out at the ocean.

Although some might describe John as a man of few words with a strong quiet presence, he had many passions and interests. He loved to ride his bicycle to and from work and on longer rides with friends across New England. In his adult life he would go to the fitness center before and after work: in the morning to swim and in the late afternoon for weight training. He was an avid reader, loved the ocean, cars, animals, fireworks and above all his family. John (Bumpa) was a loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. He is predeceased by his wife and soulmate (his words) of 59 years, Gail A (Dunford) Richardson. We suspect when given the choice to be with her again he only hesitated to say goodbye to those of us he leaves behind. As his college yearbook indicated his favorite phrase was, “Let’s get going”, off on his next adventure.

John is survived by his children: Nancy Richardson of Raynham, Massachusetts, Lynne (Richard) Thomas of Easton, Massachusetts, Kathy (Patrick) Connors of Barrington, Rhode Island; his grandchildren Craig (Danielle) Thomas of Easton, Massachusetts, Julie (Vincent) Smith of Mansfield, Massachusetts, Deven Connors of Miami, Florida; and his great-grandson Owen Thomas of Easton, Massachusetts.

Receiving hours are on Saturday January 13, 2024 from 9-11am followed by a short 11am service at Russell & Pica Funeral home: 441 South Main Street, West Bridgewater, Massachusetts. Following the service there will be a graveside interment of ashes at Pine Hill Cemetery in West Bridgewater. Friends and family are invited to lunch at Freda’s Restaurant following the services. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37839, Boone, IA 50037-0839 or

Posted online on January 04, 2024

Published in The Enterprise