Richard H. DeWitt, born November 12, 1932, in Columbus, Ohio passed away peacefully on September 1, 2020 at St Ann’s Hospital after a lengthy illness. Strong and fearless, Dick was as valiant in death as he was in life. Husband, father, grandfather, lover, and my absolute best friend. Dick was a talented man whose memory and storytelling captivated his friends and family. While attending North High School in Columbus, Ohio, Dick joined the Naval Reserve. In December, 1950, shortly after high school graduation, his Naval Reserve unit was called to active duty to serve in the Koran War. He was assigned to the Cruiser CA-139 USS Salem in Boston, Massachusetts. Dick spent most of his time on board the ship, sailing the Mediterranean. In the summer of 1953, Dick contracted pneumonia and was sent to Washington, D.C. for recovery and was honorably discharged in 1953. Returning home, Dick enrolled in The Ohio State University College of Engineering. From 1953 to 1963, Dick was a full-time student, husband, and father of 2. Dick worked at the State of Ohio Department of Highway, Bureau of Bridges, as well as side jobs such as house painting, auto repair, and handyman. Upon graduating, Dick was able to receive his Professional Engineers License in just 3 months. Dick went to work for the Whitaker Merrell Company in 1964. The company acquired the McArthur Lumber and Post Company and Piqua Steel and Fabricating. Dick started his career as a draftsman and as he grew so did the companies. In the fall of 1991, Dick purchased all 3 companies further building engineering success. By the fall of 1994, Dick sold the business and went into semi-retirement. In 1995, he and Claudia were married, and he entered a new and powerful chapter of his life. Over the next 12 years, he and Claudia loved, laughed and worked together, building a successful Real Estate career through HER Realtors. He worked tirelessly serving the Central Ohio community, not only in his real estate endeavors but also in his volunteer efforts. He could often be found working with the Clintonville-Beechwold Community Resource Center transporting area seniors to their appointments. Dick believed in furthering education and health care so much so that he chose to work with The OSU College of Medicine, Clinical Skills Center’s standardized patient program. This program helped to train upcoming physicians and healthcare workers in developing their critical thinking skills. Most of all, Dick loved to fish, especially fly fishing. From Canada to the Caribbean, Montauk to Colorado, he fished the streams, lakes, and seas. He loved the water and fishing brought him great joy. Dick was unafraid and lived for tomorrow, never looking back at yesterday. Dick was such an inspiration to all who knew him, Dick will be sorely missed.
Preceded in death by his father Howard Hall DeWitt, mother Ruth Fisher, brother William DeWitt, sister-in-law Linda DeWitt, brother-in-law Terry Hill and son-in-law David Trago he is survived by his wife Claudia Freas-DeWitt, son William DeWitt (Jory), daughter Debbie Trago, sisters Nancy Reed (Tom) and Ann Hill, brother Robert DeWitt (Mary), step -daughter Sherry Goodman (John), step-sons Patrick Freas and Ryan Freas (Molly), friend Wayne Funk, 8 Grandchildren and 11 Great-Grand Children, nieces and nephews.
Celebration of Life will be SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 12, 2020 at the TIDD FAMILY FUNERAL HOME, 5265 Norwich Street, Hilliard, OH 43026 (614)-876-1722. Friends may call from 2-4PM with Service beginning at 4:00 PM. Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, Social Distancing will be observed and facial coverings are required at the funeral home.
Memorial Contributions may be made to: Memorial VFW POST 4931, 2436 Walcutt Road, Columbus, OH 43228 or to a charity of your choice, in Dick's memory. Please visit www.tiddfuneralservice.com to share your favorite memory of Dick or to send your condolences to his family.