Richard Frank “Dick” Sherman, 89, of Charleston, passed peacefully in his home on Wednesday, March 27, 2019, beloved wife Helen at his side. He was known as a brilliant, gentle, and humble man.
Ironically, his good physical health and intellect were confounded by the scourge of memory impairment due to Alzheimer’s Disease. Through God’s compassion, he succumbed to his end after 10 years of battling against loss of self, existing in his last days for those around him as he happily lived much of his life.
Dick was born on September 18, 1929, in Denver, Colo., to William Louis and Helene (Mix) Sherman, the middle child in a family of five. Dick recounted many stories of his self-assured Teacher-mother, his hard-working Farmer-father, and mischievous escapades he and brother John were often involved in.
Serving in the U.S. Army, it was during a leave with other enlisted men that he traveled to Mexico City and met the love of his life, Maria Elena de Jesus de Garcia de Alba, better known as Helen. They enjoyed over 62 years of devotion in marriage. Helen and Dick were married in Mexico City and have made their home in Charleston since 1963. He raised four children and was the proud Papa of six grandchildren and one great – grandchild.
Dick was a Chemical Engineer and worked for E. I. DuPont his entire career, retiring as a Supervisor from the Belle plant in 1994. He loved living in the Kanawha Valley, and rejoiced in every “beautiful day in Charleston!”
A faithful member of the Basilica of the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, he promoted the vocations as a member of Serra Club and served as an RCIA sponsor for converts to the Faith. In everything he did, he was a model of Christian Love, seeing the best a person could be in anyone he encountered, the blessing of seeing through the gentle eyes of Christ.
Foremost in his concern and action was the welfare of his family, providing materially and gently lending his wisdom, counsel, and encouragement to choose carefully, to work hard, and to enjoy leisure together. In turn, he earned their admiration, respect, and strong bonds of love.
Preceding him in death were his parents, William and Helene; older brother, William “Bill” Sherman.
He is survived by his wife, Helen G. Sherman of Charleston, W.Va.; brother, John Sherman of Broomfield, Colo.; brother, David Sherman of New Port Richey, Fla.; sister, Lorretto Sherman Reifel of Centennial, Colo. Surviving children are Jennie Hill (Greg), Martinsburg, W.Va.; Ritchard J Sherman (Colleen), Collingswood, N.J.; Betty Newell (Mike), Apex, N.C.; Mary S. Wall, Johns Island, S.C.
Known and loved as Papa by Ethan, Emily and Adrienne Sherman; Mimi Newell Knight (Trey) and Zachary Newell; and Genie Wall. The newest angel, Elliana, will learn of GreatPa by legend. WWPD
Sharing in our loss are nieces and nephews, neighbors, colleagues and fellow parishioners. Special gratitude to the many friends, neighbors, caregivers, and health professionals who made his continued time at home possible.
The family will accept condolences at visitation on Sunday, March 31, from 4 to 6 p.m. at Barlow Bonsall Funeral Home, 1118 Virginia St. E., Charleston.
A Funeral Mass will be held at the Basilica of the Co – Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Monday, April 1, at 11 a.m. with the Rev. Father Donald X. Higgs officiating.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Basilica of the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart or Kanawha Hospice Care.
You may send condolences to the family at www.barlowbonsall.com.
Barlow Bonsall Funeral Home, Charleston, has been entrusted with the arrangements.