Norman V. Richards, 90, of Washington (Pennsylvania), died Thursday, January 5, 2023, in his home, after a two-year illness. He was born March 14, 1932, in Winchendon, Mass., the middle child of Burton and Berthalene Webster Richards. He was raised in
the surrounding Worcester County area and attended schools in Petersham and Athol, Mass.
Norm served four years in the U.S. Navy and during the Korean War was an air traffic controller at naval air bases in Memphis, Tenn. and Brunswick, Maine. Later, he continued to serve as an officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve in the Boston and Chicago
He attended Portland Maine Junior College and attained a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism from Boston University.
As a child, he dreamed of traveling and a career as a writer. In the 1960s he began writing books and freelance articles for audiences of all ages. In all, he wrote 22 books under noted imprints such as Doubleday, Atheneum and Childrens Press including "
Heart to Heart", detailing his own open-heart surgery at Cleveland Clinic, and "Dreamers and Doers", a young adult non-fiction book about the lives of four famous inventors.
During his career as a manager of corporate publications, Norm also was editor of United Airlines' Mainliner magazine, Chicago Magazine, Exxon's The Lamp magazine, and Marathon Oil's Marathon World magazine.
In 1988, he relocated from Marathon Oil headquarters in Findlay, Ohio, to USX's Pittsburgh heaquarters. He retired from USX in 2000 as director of corporate communications.
As an award-winning writer and magazine editor, he logged more than a million miles across the globe in airplanes, gliders, dirigibles, helicopters and ocean vessels to research stories. But no matter how far he traveled, Norm loved most to return to his
native New England to visit with family and to vacation with wife, Robin in his favorite places surrounding Portland, Maine.
Whenever possible, he would take in a game at Boston's Fenway Park to root for his beloved Red Sox baseball team. One of the happiest years of his life was 2004 when the Boston Red Sox finally won the World Series following an 86-year championship
Norm was known throughout the Washington community for his warm and kind personality, which drew people to him, and for his ever-present wit and humor. He often said his greatest treasures were the loving relationships he shared with members of his far-
flung family and many lifelong friends.
Locally, he contributed much time and effort to Citizens Library, which was very important to him. He served several terms as president of both the library board of directors and Friends of the Library. He also was a volunteer with the local United Way.
On December 4, 1987, he married Robin Gescheider Richards, who survives. Other survivors include daughter, Gayle A. (Alison Donigan) Richards; sons, Gregory B. (Anne) Richards and D. Troy (Cynthia) Richards; sisters, Sylvia A. (the late Alan) Temple,
Joyce R. (William Solovieff) Hirtle, and Diane E. (Merley) McCall; and brother, Robert (Kathryn); his grandchildren, Nathan M. Richards, Benjamin N. Richards, Raymond T. Richards, and Amelia L. Richards; his beloved niece, Charlene A. (the late Robert)
Fruchter; and many other beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by son, Gary M. Richards; brothers, Kenneth G. (Joy) Richards and Malcolm W. (Trudi) Richards; and former wife, Ruth Wyman Richards...
"An exciting history of the dirigible beginning with the first attempt to cross the English Channel by air in 1785 by Jean Pierre Blanchard and John Jefferies. The Various uses to which the 'giants in the sky' have been put. The final chapter discusses
the wartime airships."
•Douglas MacArthur, Childrens Press, 1967.
•Giants in the Sky (a Junior Literary Guild selection; illustrated by
Robert Borja and Corinne Borja), Childrens Press, 1967.
•(With John P. Reidy) John F. Kennedy, Childrens Press, 1967.
•The Story of Old Ironsides (a Junior Literary Guild selection;
illustrated by Tom Dunnington), Childrens Press, 1967.
•The Story of the Mayflower Compact (illustrated by Darrell Wiskur), Childrens Press, 1967.
•Ernest Hemingway, Childrens Press, 1968.
•Helen Keller, Childrens Press, 1968.
•Robert Frost, Childrens Press, 1968.
•The Story of the Declaration of Independence (illustrated by
Dunnington), Childrens Press, 1968.
•Dag Hammerskjoeld, Childrens Press, 1969.
•Pope John XXIII, Childrens Press, 1969.
•The Story of the Bonhomme Richard (illustrated by Dunnington),
Childrens Press, 1969.
•The Story of Monticello (illustrated by Chuck Mitchell), Childrens
•The Story of the Alamo (illustrated by Dunnington), Childrens Press,
•Jetport, Doubleday, 1973.
•The Complete Beginner's Guide to Soaring and Hang Gliding, Doubleday,
•Tractors, Plows, and Harvesters: A Book about Farm Machines,
•(With Pat Richards) Trucks and Supertrucks, Doubleday, 1980.
•Dreamers and Doers: Inventors Who Changed the World, Atheneum, 1984.
•Cowboy Movies, Bison Books, 1984.
•Heart to Heart: A Guide to Understanding Heart Disease and Open-
Heart Surgery, Atheneum, 1987.