Richard (Dick) J. Browne, 97, passed away peacefully with family by his side on Sunday, July 23, 2023, at Oakdale Rehab and Skilled Nursing Center in West Boylston.
Richard was born in Worcester on May 31, 1926, son of Daniel D. and Helena F. (Callaghan) Browne. He was the beloved husband of the late Eleanor M. (Reidy) Browne who died in 1992.
He attended Blessed Sacrament School in Worcester. There he made many lifelong friends playing baseball at Beaver Brook and swimming at Coes Pond.
With the permission of his parents, he enlisted in the United States Navy at the young age of 17. He served proudly in the Pacific theater during WWII as a gunner on the aircraft carrier USS Bennington. He was a longtime member of American Legion Tatnuck Post 288.
Upon Dick’s return from military service, he began working at the former Melville Shoe Company where he stayed for 20 years. In addition to Melville, he always had a part time job one of them being bartending. He was one of the original staff members when the Yankee Drummer opened in Auburn working there for a number of years as well various other establishments throughout the Worcester and Framingham area. In later years, he worked as a custodian for the Westborough Public Schools until his retirement.
Shortly after their first daughter was born, Richard and Eleanor decided to buy a house in Northborough where they raised their three daughters. They lived there for 20 years before moving back to Worcester which they always thought of as “home”.
Dick was an artist through and through. He attended the Massachusetts College of Art and Design where he specialized in portrait and caricature drawing. However, his greatest passion and talent was cartooning, where he would artfully capture family, friends, and coworkers, leaving us all in stitches.
Dick enjoyed watching boxing and attended many matches through the years. He loved dogs, and had many through the years, who became faithful companions that he treated like royalty. He loved his cars and could be seen sporting a new one every few years. He was a fan of country music and “all things Irish”. Dick loved his home, especially working in his yard and was very proud of the fact he had the greenest lawn in the neighborhood! Above all, his family meant the world to him especially doting on his grandchildren. He was a longtime parishioner at Blessed Sacrament Church in Worcester.
He leaves behind two daughters, Margaret A. Zimage and her husband, David of Worcester, Denise Kelly and her husband, Richard of Winchendon; a brother, David D. Browne of Southbridge; three sisters, Catherine R. Shaughnessy of Worcester, Helen A. Lambert of Worcester, Anne M. Morrissey of Jonesboro, GA; six grandchildren: Randall Ames, Lindsay Ames, Catherine Trotto, Michael Sweet, Daniel Sweet and Colleen Sweet; eleven great grandchildren; one great-great grandchild; many nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
Besides his parents and wife, he was predeceased by his daughter, Patricia A. Castellano and his siblings, Patricia F. Gaboury, Mary T. Duquette, James V. Browne and Elizabeth Browne.
Family and friends will gather to celebrate his life with visiting hours on Sunday, July 30th from 2-4pm at the Callahan, Fay & Caswell Life Celebration Home, 61 Myrtle St., Worcester. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10am on Monday, July 31st at Blessed Sacrament Church, 551 Pleasant St., Worcester. Burial will follow at St. John’s Cemetery.
Richard received loving care from the staff at Oakdale. The family would like to extend their heartfelt appreciation to everyone that touched his life in his final years there.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in memory of Richard to either the Residents’ Activities Fund at Oakdale Rehab and Skilled Nursing Center 76 North Main Street West Boylston, MA 01583 or the Worcester Animal Rescue League 139 Holden Street Worcester, MA 01606.