EAST PALASTINE – William F. Richards of Akron, passed away Friday, September 4, 2020, at Covington Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation. He was 76.
Richards was born on June 2, 1944 in Struthers to Charles L. and Stella T. Richards, who preceded him in death. He is also preceded in death by his older brother, Attorney Charles L. Richards, of Warren.
Richards is survived by his sister-in-law, Janet of Warren; niece Maureen (Mark) Cones of Baltimore; nephew Charles M. (Sally) of Warren, niece Mary Susan (Scott) Murphy of Naperville, Ill., and nephew John C. of Warren, great-nieces and nephews, and countless friends who loved him and were loved by him.
Richards is a 1962 graduate of Cardinal Mooney High School and a 1966 graduate of Youngstown State University. He proudly served in the Army and Air Force Reserves and was honorably discharged in 1973.
In the late 1960s, Richards worked in sales for Mold Tech in Youngstown, where he earned a reputation as an expert in photo etching and texturing surfaces for molds and roll dies for the steel industry. After Mold Tech, he was instrumental in starting up Custom Etch in New Castle, which is still thriving today. He then led the formation of the Ohio division of Tenibac-Graphion, a texturing leader based in Michigan.
Later in his career, Richards worked at Weaver Industries in Akron, where he found his greatest fulfillment in bringing employment opportunity to developmentally disabled workers. Throughout his career, he built a remarkable network of associates and friends who admired his patience, compassion and commitment. His co-workers said, “You would not be able to find anyone who had any unkind thing to say about Bill”.
Richards was known for his fun and engaging personality, as well as his generosity. He enjoyed frequent visits to Bimini, Bahamas and was an avid fan of Cleveland sports teams and collector of sports memorabilia. He was an athlete who enjoyed running, golfing and competing in racquetball tournaments. He was a devoted uncle to his nieces and nephews and remained a father figure to them after the passing of his brother.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to a cause fiercely supported by Richards, The Veterans of Foreign Affairs (VFW). Please indicate Bill Richards on the tribute section of the donor form at https://heroes.vfw.org/.
Family and friends may also visit www.peterrossiandsonfh.com to sign the guestbook and send condolences to the Richards family.
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