Richard E. Bradford, of Peabody, formerly of Saugus, passed away peacefully on February 18th. He was the loving husband of Dorothy (Halpin) Bradford with whom he shared 55 years of marriage.
Born and raised in Boston, he was the brother of William Bradford of Falmouth and the late John Bradford. Richard always remained a city boy at heart and enjoyed keeping track of his West End friends although this was not always easy as most went only by nicknames including Lefty, Peanuts, Skinny, Cappy and many more. A self-employed painter for 55-years, he took great pride in his work and painted many of his client’s homes and businesses many times, including Route One landmarks such as Prince Pizzeria and Augustine’s Restaurant (since closed). Struggling with heart disease for many years, he made endless trips to doctor’s offices but always with a smile. He was forever grateful for the care he was given and formed lasting friendships with many of his health care providers. Time off during trips to Atlantic City and Ogunquit with his life-partner and best friend Dorothy were treasured. At home, he read multiple newspapers every day and would always complete the crossword. Yet, his favorite activity was Words With Friends and these Friends will miss him.
Most of all, Richard enjoyed spending time with his family: son Edward Bradford and his wife Susan of Melrose; daughter Julie Hart of Peabody; and grandchildren Christopher & David Hart and Richard & Ryan Bradford. He relished his role as the provider of entertainment for family parties. He could always be counted on to crack a joke, but usually couldn’t stop laughing long enough to tell it. He loved Elvis, Fats Waller, and Little Richard and was an accomplished kazoo player himself. Happy birthday songs were always way over the top. He was also the family photographer and the self-proclaimed inventor of the selfie. This claim is hard to dispute as he started his ridiculous and vast collection of self-photographs in the 70’s, decades before smartphones and social media.
Richard always went above and beyond for those he loved. He would never show up to your house empty-handed. He might have a dozen donuts, a coffee, a television, or a ladder and 3 gallons of paint, ready to start the job. His generosity and unique humor will be greatly missed. “When I pass don’t be gloomy, just remember me as you knew me” (yeah, the poem was authored by Richard too).
In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America @ www.mymsaa.org.
Visiting hours will be held in the Bisbee-Porcella Funeral Home, 549 Lincoln Ave., SAUGUS, on Sunday 2-6 pm, relatives and friends invited.
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