Staples, Richard F., 88, of Medway Street, Providence, Freedom, NH, and formerly of Barrington, died on Friday, January 25 at the Philip Hulitar Inpatient Center in Providence. A prominent attorney and active community leader, he was the husband of Mary (Kingsbury) Staples, with whom he recently celebrated 65 years of marriage.
Born in Providence, he was the son of the late Harold and Margaret (Smith) Staples. After graduating from Moses Brown School in 1937 and Harvard College in 1941, he served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Army during World War II, retiring with the rank of Captain, and returned to Harvard to earn his law degree in 1949. As an attorney, he was a partner at Tillinghast, Collins & Graham, and more recently at Hinckley Allen & Snyder, retiring in 1987.
Before moving to Providence in 1977, Mr. Staples was a resident of Barrington for 25 years and served as a member and chairman of the Barrington School Committee from 1956 to 1962. In 1964, he was appointed by Governor John Chafee to the state Board of Education and in 1969 was appointed to the state Board of Regents by Governor Frank Licht. He was a trustee of Citizens Savings Bank and board member of Citizens Financial Group, president of the Rhode Island Historical Society, and served as a member of the Commission on Judicial Tenure and Ethics.
A devoted family man, in addition to his wife, he leaves three sons and daughters-in-law: Richard F. Staples Jr. and Elizabeth B. Staples of Barrington; Benjamin T. Staples and Deborah E. Blagg of Ipswich, MA; and Edward K. Staples and Kate Staples of Barrington, along with eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. He was the brother of Margaret S. Morrow, Charles G. Staples II, and the late Jeanne E. Busch.
A memorial service celebrating his life will be held on Saturday, February 2 at 11:00 a.m. at Central Congregational Church, 296 Angell Street, Providence. Burial will be in Swan Point Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions to Hospice Care of RI, 169 George Street, Pawtucket 02860, or the RI Community Food Bank, 200 Niantic Avenue, Providence 02907 would be appreciated.
296 Angel Street
Providence, RI Saturday, February 2, 2008