Tuesday 24 October 2017

Family man Richard proudly served in the FCA for 40 years

By Maria Pepper

The late Richard Bolger
The late Richard Bolger

Well-known Wexfordman Mr. Richard Bolger of Ferrybank and formerly of Casa Rio who died recently, served in the former FCA for 40 years before retiring as Commandant of the 10th Battalion in 1993.

Richard passed away peacefully in Wexford General Hospital on October 29 following an illness. He was 80 years old.

He is survived by Ann, his beloved wife of 57 years; his sons Dick, John and Brian; his daughters Deborah, Edel and Anne-Marie; his 15 grandchildren; his brother Paddy and his extended family and friends.

He was predeceased by his brothers John and Jimmy and his sisters Marie and Deborah.

Born in King Street in 1936, a son of the late Jack and Deborah (Dora) Bolger, Richard served his time as a fitter with Philip Pierce & Company rising to become plant manager with a reputation for being hard but fair.

He later worked as a foreman in CPM (California Pellet Mills) on Whitemill Industrial Estate.

He joined the FCA now the Army Reserve in 1953 and rose through the ranks to become 10th Battalion Commandant before retiring in 1993. During his 40-year career with the service, he attended many civic events, parades and inspections in an official capacity, meeting Ministers of Defence, Presidents and Bishops. His charming and gentlemanly demeanour ensured that he could hold his own in any company.

Members of the Army Reserve formed a guard of honour as his coffin was carried from Rowe Street Church following Requiem Mass. Burial took place in St. Ibar's Cemetery, Crosstown where bugler Anthony Nolan sounded the Last Post at his graveside.

Richard's genuine interest in talking to people made him a great ambassador for the FCA at public engagements such as Barry Day and the St. Patrick's Day Parade.

In his spare time, he loved walking in nature and went for a walk every day of his life. Edenvale in Castlebridge and The Raven in Curracloe were among his favourite haunts. On these rambles, he had a keen eye for detail and would point out a bird's nest, an old stone wall or a nicely made metalwork gate. 'There's beauty all around us', he would say.

As a teenager, he had an interest in sailing and sailed his father Jack's cot out into Wexford Harbour from its mooring in Batt Street.

Richard had a great interest in local history and was an avid reader of publications about genealogy, old Wexford families and 1798. He visited all the 1798 battle sites in County Wexford, satisfying a particular military interest.

Above all, he was a great family man who supported all his children and grandchildren even during his illness and he would have a big smile on his face when they visited him in hospital, telling them how happy he was and what a good life he'd had. He was always pleased when family members smuggled in a bottle of wine or an apple tart!

Richard will be sadly missed by his family, neigbhbours and many friends.

The Bolger family would like to thank the staff of Wexford General Hospital and Consultant Oncologist Dr. Paula Calvert of University Hospital Waterford who cared for Richard during his illness and all their neighbours and friends for their kind support.

Wexford People

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