Richard's Story

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Richard E. Deppen, 88, of 10 Queen Ave., Shamokin Dam, passed suddenly of a heart attack on Friday, July 28, 2017.
He was born Jan. 28 1929, in Selinsgrove, a son of the late Rufus R. and Iona M. (Wolfe) Deppen.

Rich loved his family, God, his many friends and this great country of ours. He freely shared his love with all who were blessed enough to be in his company.
His sense of humor was legendary. A lightening quick wit and a long list of great stories (most of them true, we assume) kept everyone entertained. He loved to give people "endearing" nicknames, of which they were usually unaware, and occasionally embarrassed himself by using them at the wrong time. Laughter defined his persona.
Rich was a man of many talents. He could fix anything. If he couldn't find the part he needed, he'd make it. If he couldn't get the tool he needed, he'd make it, though he had a collection of tools to be envied. Quality and frugality were his constant partners. The things he couldn't fix whether it be mechanical, electrical, or a cosmetic upgrade, made up a very short list.
He was a 1947 graduate of Montandon High School, and proud of placing in the top 10 out of his class of 13, (and would delay sharing the details of the size of his class when he noted that particular accomplishment). After high school, he went to work on the Pennsylvania Railroad, painting bridges, until he joined the Army in 1950. He worked in the Motor Pool while in the service, where he attained the rank of Sergeant, and was honorably discharged in 1953.
Following his military service, he returned briefly to the railroad. He was then employed by Bell Telephone (later Verizon) as a switchman for 33 years, retiring in 1987. Upon his retirement, he obtained his private pilot's license, enriching his life-long love of airplanes and flying. He was also further employed as a driver for Sunbury Motors and Sunbury Motor's Kia for 25 years. He also picked up golf again in retirement, playing usually at least once a week, including while he and his wife wintered in Florida for 28 years. While considering himself a duffer, there sure were lots of laughs on the course.
Rich was a Mason, receiving his 60-year pin in 2015, a member of American Legion Post 201, a member of St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Northumberland, and also a past member of St. Matthew's Episcopal in Sunbury, St. Matthew's Lutheran in Shamokin Dam and All Saints Episcopal in Selinsgrove. Additionally, he was a 43-year active member of the Northumberland Boat Club and a member of the Telephone Pioneers of America as well as the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA).

He is survived by Dorothy C. Deppen (Craig,) his wife of 67 years; son, Steven R. Deppen, currently residing in China; daughter, Linda S. Franco and granddaughter, Marta D. Capron, both of Lansdale; sister, Jean Fairchild, of Easton; and brothers, Frederick Deppen (Shirley), of Colorado Springs, Colo., James Deppen (Carol), of Bakersfield, Calif., and Donald Deppen (Diane), of Clarendon; and 20 nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by one brother, Robert Deppen; and one sister, Emma Jane Myers.

A visitation will begin at 9 a.m. Friday at the Joseph W. Epler Funeral Home, 210 King St., Northumberland, and will include a Masonic Service at 10:30. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. at St. Mark's Episcopal Church, 269 Second St., Northumberland.
Burial with military honors will follow at 3 p.m. in Northumberland Memorial Park, Stonington.
Donations may be made to St. Marks Episcopal Church, 269 Second St., Northumberland, PA 17857.
Published on July 30, 2017
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