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Posted on October 23, 2014 | 8:59 p.m.

Richard Adam Sr. of Santa Maria, 1930-2014

Source: Magner-Maloney Funeral Home and Crematory

Dick Adam
Richard Adam Sr.

Richard E. Adam Sr., 84, of Santa Maria passed away at his home on Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014.

Richard was born Aug. 14, 1930, in Berkley, Calif., to John and Hester Adam. He was a great-grandson of William Laird Adam, one of the founders of Santa Maria.

Dick, as he was known to some, attended local schools, both UC Davis and UC Berkley, where he graduated with a degree in agricultural economics and served in the Air Force before returning to Santa Maria to farm and raise his family.

After just a four-month courtship, he married Bernadette Florence Lippert of San Francisco on Aug. 25, 1962.

Richard farmed with his brother, Jack, until 1994, when he and his sons struck out on their own. He served his community on the Santa Maria-Bonita school board and the Santa Maria Valley Water Conservation District board, and was a member of numerous agricultural and civic organizations. He was instrumental in the adjudication of the Santa Maria Groundwater Basin, ensuring that his grandchildren and beyond would have water to farm with.

He was a pilot and enjoyed flying his Cessna 206 and the 337, an inline twin that made the cover of AOPA Magazine that he was very proud of. He enjoyed hunting various game, including quail, doves and deer. Hunting together was a favorite activity with his sons as we were growing up. His favorite “sport” was watching his beloved sons grow their business. He held court each day at lunch at various local restaurants, where he would have lunch with his sons and numerous guests. He was a mentor to many, both with free advice and a few times, with money, land or other support. He acquired two patents and invented many aides and process improvements to make farm work easier for those working the fields for him and others producing and harvesting the same crops.

He is survived by his loving wife of 52 years, Bernadette; sons Peter (Amy), Kerry (Diane), Richard Jr. (Carrick) and Dominic (Hala); and grandchildren Victoria, Joseph, Olivia, Mattie, Meryl, Audrey, Kate, Henry, Jacob, Austin and Luke. He is preceded in death by his parents, John and Hester Adam, his brother, Jack, and grandson Carl Peter. He is loved and will be missed.

A Mass will be held for Richard at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28 at St. Louis de Montfort Catholic Church, 1190 E. Clark Ave. in Orcutt. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wounded Warriors Project in his name.

Arrangements are in the care of Magner-Maloney Funeral Home and Crematory.

 

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