June 4, 1936 - September 8, 2020
Richard Joseph Fydenkevez, 84, died on Tuesday, September 8, at his home in Hadley. Dick was born on June 4, 1936 to the late Anthony and Sophie (Rabinski) Fydenkevez. Throughout his life, Dick worked hard, enjoyed time with friends and family, and lived life to the fullest. He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Elizabeth (Pratt). He will also be deeply missed by his five children: Lynn (the late Richard) Felt of Hadley, Mark (Barbara) Fydenkevez of Colorado Springs, Glenn (Lisa) Fydenkevez of East Longmeadow, Anthony (Amy) Fydenkevez of Hadley, and Carol (Steve) Szymkowicz of Hadley. He leaves 14 grandchildren: Jeremy, Stephanie, and Daniel Felt; Michael, Stephen, Brian, Katie and Matthew Fydenkevez; Nathan and Sydney Fydenkevez; Tia and Cassidy Fydenkevez; and Kristin and Tyler Szymkowicz. He leaves three great grandchildren, Benjamin Felt, Nathan Fydenkevez, and Nora Fydenkevez. Dick is also survived by his brothers Joseph and Edward, and a sister, Ginger. He was predeceased by a sister, Elaine. For more than 30 years, Dick worked as a truck driver for Sweet Life Foods of Suffield, Connecticut. He logged more than 1 million miles on the road before retiring with a perfect safety record. Dick thoroughly enjoyed traveling throughout New England and making friends wherever he went. He had a gift of making people feel comfortable and could talk to almost anyone. After marrying in 1957, Dick and Betty settled in the Comins homestead on Comins Road, where they raised their family. Over many years, they renovated the drafty farmhouse into a lovely home. The couple enjoyed gardening together and their flower gardens regularly drew admirers and photographers. Dick lived his entire life in Hadley, where he served for many years on the town’s zoning board of appeals. He took pride in helping shape Hadley’s growth while maintaining the town’s farming roots and character. Although Dick drove for a living, he also loved hitting the open road in his spare time. He and Betty visited most of the United States and traveled to Europe and Australia as well. Sharing time with family was always important to Dick. After their children left home, Dick and Betty began treating the entire family to an annual vacation in Ogunquit, Maine, a tradition that has continued for more than 20 years. Walking the Marginal Way with Grandpa was always in demand, and he often would make the trek several times a day, without complaint. Dick was happiest when he was working. He maintained a busy schedule for many years after “retiring.” He drove the town senior center bus, piloted a school bus, and worked in the school maintenance department. In summers, he enjoyed helping neighbors in the tobacco fields. His abundant energy and strength sustained him through his final days. He had a strong sense of faith and was a lifelong communicant of the Most Holy Redeemer Church, rarely missing mass. In his later years, his focus was very much on his grandchildren. He was always ready to provide a ride, attend a game, go out for coffee, or do some shopping. He liked country music, especially George Jones and Willie Nelson, and would root for the Boston sports teams, win or lose. He and Betty remained inseparable to the end, watching television together, reminiscing about the past, and making plans for the future. For decades, Dick drove an 18-wheeler emblazoned with the words “Sweet Life” in bold letters on the trailer. It’s a fitting epitaph for this gentle soul, who worked hard, was well-loved, and who truly lived every day of his life. Calling hours will be Sunday, September 13th from 4-6 PM at the DROZDAL FUNERAL HOME, 120 Damon Rd., Northampton. A liturgy of Christian Burial will be celebrated Monday, September 14th at Most Holy Redeemers’ Parish Hall at 10 AM. Burial will immediately follow in Holy Rosary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Richard’s name to Most Holy Redeemer Building Fund, 120 Russell St., Hadley, MA 01035. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, masks and social distancing are required at all times. For more information, or to leave a message of personal condolence please visit Drozdalfuneralhome.com.
Richard Joseph Fydenkevez, 84, died on Tuesday, September 8, at his home in Hadley. Dick was born on June 4, 1936 to the late Anthony and Sophie (Rabinski) Fydenkevez. Throughout his life, Dick worked hard, enjoyed time with friends and family,... View Obituary & Service Information
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