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Richard Allen Bower, 62, of Corning, NY, went to be with his Lord & Savior, surrounded by his loving family on March 12, 2023, after a difficult battle with cancer. Rick was born on September 1, 1960, to Charles Edward and Mary Katherine Dooley Bower in Corning, NY. Richard married the love of his life, Terri Rumsey Bower and they spent many blissful years together. Rick retired from Polly-O, Campbell, NY, in 2015 with 30 years of service.
Regardless of your relationship with Rick, his life is best described by his niece:
Richard Bower is irreplaceable, and I’ll endeavor to tell you why. He was truly a man of family and undoubtedly one of the Earth. He hunted, and he fished every season. He joked that the animals would be breathing a sigh of relief knowing he’d no longer be there to look them in the eye. The number of meals he prepared for his family were seemingly infinite—even in times of great sorrow, Rick would appear with a warm plate of eggs and bacon. (And I might just add that his marinated chicken was legendary. What shall we do without it?)
Needless to say, he was the type of man who always had the coffee brewed and ready in the morning. The type of man that – when his nieces called in a panic over the things that go bump in the night – would show up in a mere moment, shotgun in hand. Solid and steady, Rick really was. He stood by his family, even when sickness or old age or misfortune came upon them. He nurtured, protected, and was happy to do so. I think he undertook it as his purpose. A holiday never went by that he wouldn’t be thinking of his family, spread across miles and states. I’ll be holding onto every text you sent to remind us of this.
As genuine as they come, you could expect the truth from him. Boy, did you really say what was on your mind, Rick. He had a voice as low and gruff as fire and earth, exactly as one might imagine a mountain-esque man to sound. I can still hear his laugh, his jokes, and quick teasing remarks ringing in my ears. And I can see his bright, blue eyes shining along with it. He could really make you snort with laughter with some of the things he said.
He was the perfect complement to his wife, Terri. Their home was, and remains to be, the most warm and comforting place, filled with delicious smells and laughter (and maybe screams because your boy, Zac, is young, wild, and free, Richard). Under the guise of visiting her for cookies, Rick fell in love, and so did she. In other words, when he stepped across that threshold for the first time, he would never leave again. You would most often find Rick there, in their old farmhouse, on a stunning stretch of land in New York. That’s not to say he didn’t travel—you might have found him as far north as Thunder Bay, Canada, or south, in North Carolina, eating Krispy Kremes and catching up with family. But, we all know that where he ultimately belonged was home with Terri and Zac.
For as gruff and as masculine as Rick was, he too was soft and thoughtful, often pondering what was wrong, what was right, and how to go about doing that. Surely, we all know by now that just being a man does not a man make. At least, not in my definition. If ever someone asked me to define the measure of a good man, I’d think of him—as steadfast and strong as he was. Whatever invisible bind there is that ties people together, he obviously knew how to harness and respect it, blood or no. He was family, through and through. Anyone should be so lucky to have their own Richard Bower.
So, Uncle Ricky, you once said to me that the reason to go on living lies within those who love us. That there’s no time for anything but appreciation. I am so thankful to have an uncle like you. You fit right in as if you’d always been there; you were the man we needed you to be. The hole you’ve left behind is immense and painful, but we’ll all try to do as you said. I trust you’ll be with us along the way.
Richard is survived by his wife Terri Bower and his son Zachary and faithful companions Patty and Thomas Miller at home. He is also survived by siblings and spouses, Merl Bower, Janice (Ted) Crooker, Carol (Dale) McKay, Jacqueline Burrows, James Bower, Ronald (Gloria) Bower, Peggy Havens Bower, 24 nieces and nephews, including numerous great and great great nieces and nephews. Father-in-law Tracy Rumsey and sisters in law; Tanya (Mark) Jacobus, Tammy (Mike) Morrissey, Tracy Rumsey Overdurf, and 6 nieces and nephews in law. Rick is also survived by a family of close loving friends.
He was predeceased by his parents and siblings, Diane Bower Phillips, Phillip Bower, nephew Dale McKay, Jr and mother-in-law Joanne Rumsey.
The family will receive friends at Acly-Stover Funeral Home on Saturday, March 25, 2023, from 1-3 p.m. Services will follow at 3:00 p.m. It was Richard’s request attendees wear comfortable clothing. In his words, “tell them to wear their camo”. We invite you to do so. Please plan to attend a gathering to celebrate Rick’s life following the service.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Zachary Bower’s education fund at Corning Credit Union, the Pantry of Angels, Lindley NY, or Lindley Community Church in Richard Bower’s name.