Obituary: Richard “Dick” Nightingale – Portland Press Herald
ROCKPORT – Richard “Dick” Nightingale of Rockport passed away on August 6, 2022 after a months-long battle with acute respiratory failure related to Covid-19.
Born on October 1, 1939 in Skowhegan, Dick was raised by his loving grandparents, Bertha and Burton Nightingale. He graduated from Skowhegan High School, born in 1958. Although he was accepted into the Maine Maritime Academy, he chose instead to pursue a career in real estate. In 1964 he married the former Mary Richardson of Portland.
Dick was a real estate visionary and developer throughout Midcoast Maine, building and restoring properties from Belfast to Bath, including Vinalhaven. His numerous projects ranged from affordable apartment complexes to high-quality residential complexes and commercial properties. He loved spending the summer and fall at his home in Bay Ridge, one of several neighborhoods he created overlooking Chickawaukie Lake and Penobscot Bay. A creative thinker, he had a unique ability to see potential in all things property, from an otherwise complete demolition to a large vacant lot.
At the peak of his 60+ year career, it was common for him to mentor at-risk youth at the request of a local school counselor. He was humble and generous, often making anonymous donations to those in need. He found great joy in sharing his knowledge and talents with others.
In his spare time, Dick became a licensed pilot, enjoyed boating on the waters of Maine and Florida, and took great delight in sharing stories with friends and strangers. He was a lover of people, children and animals.
He valued hard work, which was evident as he worked until his last days. He was a fearless warrior who fought valiantly to survive to the bitter end.
Daughters Beth and Stacy fondly remember numerous early childhood adventures with their father, during which he would take Stacy to tour properties in various stages of rehabilitation and play “name that value” and the fair market value of real estate with Beth to guess that are listed throughout Midcoast Maine. Dick and his sons-in-law Steve and Ray greatly enjoyed each other’s company, particularly in connection with land development and residential rehabilitation projects in the last years of his life. From the ages of 80 to nearly 83, Dick and Ray helped each other in their respective developments at Gray and Rockport. They could often be found enjoying themselves on excavators. Together, Dick and Steve completely gutted and rehabilitated daughter Beth and Steve’s home in St. Petersburg, Florida. During these projects, both sons-in-law enjoyed their late-night visits filled with stories and conversations with their much-missed friend and father-in-law.
Grandson Nicholas fondly remembers learning to boat and collecting loose change from Dick’s favorite chair. Marc traces his lifelong love of flying to his first flying lesson at the age of 13 with his grandfather. Michael loved his time as a little kid driving from job site to job site with his dad and earning his fair share from M&Ms. Sophia maintains her farewell ritual where she kisses her cheeks and tells her dad that he smells of sugar.
Dick was a devoted husband to Mary, proud father to Beth and Stacy, loving father-in-law and friend to Steve and Ray, and adoring grandfather to Nicholas, Marc, Michael and Sophia. He is and will be missed forever by his family and countless friends.
Dick enjoyed spending time with his family. In his later years, his greatest desire was to organize and enjoy extended family outings to create lifelong memories. His family is comforted by countless memories of their time together in Maine and Florida.
Dick was predeceased by his siblings Nancy and Marty; as well as his best friend Joe Pellicani, whom he considered a brother.
He is survived by his wife Mary of 58 years; daughters; grandchildren; and siblings Michael, Linwood, Jim and Connie.
Family and friends will gather to celebrate his life at a later date when it is deemed safe to gather.
To offer a memory or condolences to the Nightingale family, please visit their Book of Memories at http://www.bchfh.com. The arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland.
Donations in memory of Dick can be made to one of the following charities: Good Flights, which provides lifesaving air transport and provides ground transportation for some of the country’s most vulnerable pet populations at https://greatergood.org/good-flights or
Restorative Justice Project Midcoast, which benefits both at-risk youth and adults at RJP Midcoast.
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