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June 15, 2013

Richard B. Mitchell

NILAND, Calif. — Richard B. Mitchell, 78, formerly of Cambridge Springs, died Friday, June 14, 2013, at his home at the Fountain of Youth Resort in Niland, Calif.

He was born Sept. 6, 1934, in Cambridge Springs, the son of Kenneth and Marian Simington Mitchell. He married the former Thelma Hornaman on July 25, 1953; she survives.

Richard attended Drake’s Mills School, a one-room schoolhouse, for first grade, and then went to Cambridge Springs schools where he graduated in the class of 1952. He was drafted into the U.S. Army, serving with the occupation forces in West Germany during the Korean Conflict. Subsequently he became a charter lifetime member of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 169 in Venango and a member of American Legion Post 381 in Cambridge Springs.

Richard owned Mitchell’s Saegertown Market and later owned the Town Cut Rate in Cambridge Springs. He was also co-owner of Mitchell Memorials. He retired from his employment at PENNCREST School District in 1995. After retiring, Richard and his wife enjoyed traveling and visited 49 states and 14 other countries. During their travels they found their current home at the Fountain of Youth.

Organizations that Richard participated in included being president of the local chapter of the National Exchange Club and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, as well as Erie and Crawford County Auxiliary Pennsylvania State Police and the Cambridge Springs Volunteer Fire Department. He also was member and past master of the Masonic Lodge, the Scottish Rites where he obtained the 32nd degree and the Shriners. He served as Republican committeeman and a Cambridge Springs Council member and he was the mayor of Cambridge Springs in 1980.

Richard enjoyed helping his friends and neighbors and was famous for his soup kitchen. He often prepared homemade soup that filled a 16-quart pot and doled it out to those who came “pan in hand.” He was also proud that he was able to help others by donating more than two gallons of blood over the years.

Survivors, in addition to his wife of 59 years, include sons Bruce and his wife, Peg, of Newtown, Robert of Tulsa, Okla., and Randy and his wife, Linda, of Escondido, Calif.; and a daughter, Kimberly and her husband, Tom, Mitchell-Glenn of Cambridge Springs. He was also survived by six grandchildren, two stepgrandchildren, three great-grandchildren and two stepgreat-grandchildren. Also surviving are his brother, Ray and his wife, Joy, and his sister, Joyce and her husband, Al, White, all of Texas.

In addition to his parents, Richard was predeceased by his granddaughter, Danielle Mitchell.

Richard will be greatly missed by those he leaves behind for his keen sense of humor and his generosity to others.

In respect of his wishes, no services were held and cremation took place. The ashes will be interred in Mitchell Cemetery at a later date.

Donations to honor Richard can be made to Make-A-Wish in the memory of Danielle Mitchell at 1001 State St., Suite 502, Erie, Pa. 16501.

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