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  Earl (Rick) Richard


                         1932  (Age One year old)               1950  (age 19)                                2004   (age 73)



                            Home on Leave                  Boot Camp Photo                  Outside Barracks

                              Summer 1951                                                            NAAS Miramar 1952



I was Born May 16, 1931 in Somerville, Massachusetts.  In 1935 my family moved 15 miles North of Boston to a little town called Wilmington Mass.  The little house (shown below)  was home until I entered the U.S. Navy on 1 June 1948.    


Click on all photos below to enlarge

                                           Dads House -2.JPG (133886 bytes)                           Dads House-1.JPG (154927 bytes)   

************************************************************************************************************************************   In 1941, at the age of 10, learning to  play the Trumpet was my main interest .  My loving mother purchased a new trumpet for me at a cost of $69 and then made the arrangements for me to take private lessons for  the next several years  (50 cents per lesson).  Every Saturday I had to walk three miles down and three miles back, to the Instructors house, and that  was a bit tiring.   But at a cost of fifty cents per lesson, I guess I shouldn't complain.  

When I entered Jr. High School in 1944, I became a member of the school band  and continued on thru High School to became the top Trumpet solo player in the High School Band.  





                           1945 in front of my house               Playing taps at the Memorial Day Parade

                                                                          The following day (June 1st) I joined the U.S.Navy   

Playing at the High School football games and  the  Memorial Day Parades was lots of fun.    Being the High School Top Trumpet player also had other interests.  Since the USA was deep into WWII  during the early 1940's we seen many sad days when our war hero's were being returned home only to be buried in the military plot at the Wildwood Cemetery in Wilmington, Mass.   The local American Legion Post would conduct military burial services and needed a bugler to play taps.   It  was an honor for me to be selected as the Legions bugler for these services, but quite sad.  The only enjoyment  was going to the Legion hall after the ceremony for coffee and  donuts.   A legitimate (and legal) excuse for getting out of a  class  


Wilmington Schools attended by Earl (Rick) Richard


               West School 1st & 2nd Grade.jpg (104972 bytes)       Whitefield School 3,4 & 5th grade.jpg (85190 bytes)            W.T. Buzzell School 7 & 8 grade.jpg (112735 bytes)       The Old Wilmington High School.jpg (121726 bytes)

                 West School             Whitefield School        Center School          W.T. Buzzell School       Wilmington H.S.

                    Grades 1 & 2               Grades 3,4, 5               Grade 6                   Grades 7 & 8             Grades 9 thru 12

                 (Now a Museum)        ( North Wilmington)                                       Jr. High School       The Old Sr. High School



On June 1st 1948 I decided to join the U.S. Marine Corps and went to the Fargo Building in Boston to enlist  (up on the 5th floor).  Upon (almost) completing the physical,  I was told the Marine Corp height requirement was  5 ft 3 Inches.  I measured 5 ft  2-3/4 Inches.  Yup, you guessed it,   I was turned down. The recruiter handed me a bunch of enlistment papers and suggested that I take them  up to the 7th floor and join the U.S. Navy.  That was where I ended up  - and was then shipped off to Chicago where I entered  Boot Camp Training at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center  as a member of Company 189.  (See Photo below)

Photo below taken approximately August 1948


NavyBoot Camp 1948-rev.jpg (154729 bytes)   

Rick Richard kneeling at far right, bottom row.



With my music background, I was also selected to participate in the NTC Recruit Training Command Drum and Bugle Corps.  More fun than spending all day on the grinder marching with a rifle and drilling.

Photos below taken approximately July 1948


          Drum & Bugle Group with Rick.JPG (200154 bytes)       Drum & Bugal -arrow.JPG (255008 bytes)               

Left photo - Rick Richard directly in the  middle of the marching group

Right photo, Rick Richard  kneeling in the bottom row - far left



Five  Boot Camp buddies from the State of Massachusetts

Boot Camp Buddies.jpg (87148 bytes)

Top Row

William Murphy- Roxbury Mass.

2nd Row

Wally Merchant - Brockton, Mass 

Hank Hanson - Everett, Mass.

Sal Coraccio - Waltham, Mass.

3rd Row

Frank Chreafulli - Belmont, Mass.

Rick Richard, Wilmington, Mass

Vic Santamaria - Waltham Mass





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Last modified: January 13, 2015