Richard K. Wood

Wood—Richard K. Wood, 82, on November 1, 2019, at home in Gettysburg, Pa., returning to the sea, surrounded by his wife and three daughters. Dick was born on June 23, 1937, in Hackensack, N.J. During World War II he lived on a five-family community farm that included a German physicist and a Japanese family, which helped form his great respect for all people and his commitment to ensuring equality for all. He attended Oakwood Friends School during his high school years and was clerk of New York Yearly Meeting of Young Friends. He majored in physics at Haverford College and graduated from Earlham College, where he was a member of Concert Choir.

At Earlham, he met Mary Elizabeth Temple, his soulmate. They married in Wisconsin in 1962. He earned his master’s degree in English at University of Wisconsin–Madison, and was working toward his doctorate when he discovered computer science and earned a second master’s. While Liz was a medical student, he taught English for two years at Milton College, where he was also chair of the Fine Arts Department.

They moved to Gettysburg, Pa., in 1969, for his job as director of Academic Computing at Gettysburg College. He shared his love of education and computing with many students and assisted other small colleges in establishing academic computing. In the Gettysburg community, he was instrumental in starting American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO), and was seen every Saturday setting up fields and refereeing. In addition to serving on the school board (as president for ten years), he co-chaired the Commission for the Seventy-fifth Rededication of the Peace Light Memorial, was active in starting the Interfaith Center for Peace and Justice, worked with the town’s spiritual leaders, was a leader in the Nuclear Freeze Campaign, and helped establish Gettysburg (Pa.) Meeting. He retired from the college as director emeritus in 1990.

He loved to fly, and with navigation skills he acquired in flying, he and Liz sailed extensively in the Chesapeake, coastal waters, the Bahamas, and the eastern Caribbean. He became a commodore of the Seven Seas Cruising organization and offered assistance to several island projects. Global Volunteers was another organization that benefited from the couple’s commitment to making the world a better and safer place.

Dick is survived by his wife of 57 years, Elizabeth Temple Wood; three children, Barbara Ann Wood (Steven L. Pace), Deborah Elizabeth Wood, and Lisa Wood; and two grandchildren.

1 thought on “Richard K. Wood

  1. Ralph Richardson III is my great-nephew. He’s an incredible young man with a profound thought pattern.
    Ralph is compassionate and has a deep connection to other human beings, which he’s so eloquently expressed in his written words. Music is a wonderful way for us to be one. Keep listening, playing, singing, writing and marching Ralph. The world is a better place with you in it.
    Love ❤️ you,
    Aunt Michelle

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