Richard Louis "Dick" Spaziani (1928 - 2018)

  • "My father, Ron Bedard, worked with Dick at the Dept of Ed...."
    - Rhonda Bedard
  • "Sorry to hear of Dick's passing. He was Spaz to us at the..."
    - Heather Brown
  • "Please accept my sincere condolences, and please find peace..."
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Richard Louis Spaziani, 89 of Salem, OR, passed away peacefully on Feb. 28th 2018 in Salem. Richard (Dick) was born in Watertown, NY to George and Faye (Pezza) Spaziani on Sept. 7th 1928. After graduating high school in 1946 he enlisted in the Army Air Force and spent 6 years honorably serving our country.
He was first stationed in Wichita Falls, TX at the U.S. Air Force Training Base and became a Permanent Grade Staff Sargent. While there he became a Mechanic Supervisor working on the B-29s. Later, Dick was stationed at Kadena Air Force Base on Okinawa during the Korean War.
After an honorable discharge Dick went to NY University and graduated from the Stern School of Business with a Master's degree. After graduation Dick worked at Gimbal Brothers department store in NY City where he developed an inventory system for one of their departments. He then worked as an Industrial Engineer for Republic Aviation on Long Island, NY. He and a crew were sent to Bitburg Germany to work on the F-105 fighter jets. While there, they successfully solved a critical issue the planes were having.
While at the Bitburg Air Force Base he met Jeanne duBuy, a Military Dependent School Teacher. After coming back to the "states" they married and Jeanne brought Dick back to her home town of Salem, OR. While in Salem their first son Richard (Rick) was born. Dick decided to continue his education, in education, at Oregon State University. After completing his education courses the family moved to Tillamook, OR, where Dick taught at the local high school. It was there that their second son, Marc, was born.
In 1966 the Government of Guam invited Dick to set up a Vocational Education program at the University of Guam. He accepted and the family spent three years on Guam. Dick was then accepted into the Doctoral Program at Oregon State University. He graduated in the top 5%, received his Ed.D. in Education, and joined Phi Kappa Phi as an honorary member.
In 1972 Dick was invited by the University of Alaska S.E., in Juneau Alaska., to develop a Vocational Education program for the University. After successfully creating the department Dick was asked to become the Deputy Director of Education Program Support for the state of Alaska. After a wonderful and successful career, Dick retired in 1987.
After retirement Dick and Jeanne volunteered at the Alaska State Museum before moving back to Salem, OR in 1991. It was here he spent most of his wonderful retirement where he could be close to family and friends.
Above all, Dick enjoyed being with his family and friends; followed closely by traveling! He also enjoyed planes, reading, cooking, playing cards and telling stories of his adventurous life. For all those who had the good fortune of knowing him, an evening involving the last three was a definite pleasure.
Dick is survived by his beloved wife Jeanne, of 55 years; son Rick, his wife Sonya and grandsons Garren and Chase; son Marc, his significant other Katrina Matheny, granddaughters Kaylee (Matthew) Potter, Markie Spaziani and grandson Kegan Young; daughter, by a previous marriage, Jeanne Spaziani (Laurie) Booth, living in England and grandchildren Lucas and Jessamine Booth; sister Doris Layfield of Brandenton, Fl., as well numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.
No funeral services are planned at this time. There will be a celebration of his life later this year for this "extraordinary man", as one of Dick's hospice care team put it, but the date has not yet been set. Assisiting the family is Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service.
The family wishes to extend its gratitude to Serenity Hospice. In so many ways each member of Dick's hospice team not only helped Dick in his final weeks, but the whole family as well.
Please make any donations in Dick's honor to Serenity Hospice Hope Foundation, 11481 SE Hall Blvd. Suite 200. Tigard, OR 97223.
Funeral Home
Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service and Oakleaf Crematory
605 Commercial St SE
Salem, OR 97301
(503) 3642257
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Published in The Juneau Empire from Mar. 26 to Apr. 25, 2018
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