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Richard E. Duer, 90, died on Aug. 15 at Connecticut Hospice in Branford after a short illness. He is survived by his wife Anne (née von Boetticher) as well as his brother Gregory and (Paula) Duer; four children, Hope A. and (Bret) Citrin of Madison, Edwin C. Duer of Merrimack, New Hampshire, James T. and (Linda) Duer of Duvall, Washington, and Richard E. Duer and (Nynne Enke-Duer) of Valby, Denmark; and seven grandchildren, Benjamin, Molly, Amy, Ethan, Frida, Karl-Oskar, and Magnus.
Born in Jamaica, Queens, New York, in 1929 to Edwin C. and Henrietta (née Dittmar) Duer, Dick spent his childhood summers on a New Jersey lake. He attended Brooklyn Preparatory School and graduated from Fordham University. He then enlisted in the Army for two years, stationed in New Jersey. After his Army service, he was hired by Fisher Scientific, working in Michigan and West Virginia for a few years before returning to Port Washington, New York, where he met his future bride. Dick and Anne were married in 1960, and moved to Mount Vernon, New York.
Dick moved his growing family from Ridgefield to Upper St. Claire, Pennsylvania. In 1971, the family moved to Madison. He bought a home, sight unseen, on a quiet street a few miles from downtown, a few miles from the town beaches, and a few miles from the schools his children attended. It proved to be the perfect home to raise his daughter and three sons. His constant optimism and potent sense of humor fit well with his successful sales career. Because his territory comprised a large area of the Northeast, he would travel a few days each week. The sound of his car re-entering the driveway always brought a sense of joy to his family.
Dick always believed he should give back to his community, and he jumped in feet first. After his retirement in 1993, he became a familiar sight in Madison and surrounding towns through his volunteer work in both the public and private sectors. He volunteered at hospice, drove for Madison Community Services, joined the Lion’s Club, and held various positions at St. Margaret’s Church, including teaching Catechism and participating on Home Front Day. He was a familiar sight selling calendars on the Post Office steps for the Scranton Library. No Madison resident went without a calendar during those years!
Dick was a good man, a good husband, and a good father. He will be greatly missed.
A memorial Mass will be held at Saint Margaret Church on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 10:30 a.m.
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