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Dr. Richard P. Flannery

Dr. Richard P. Flannery

September 8, 1932 - March 7, 2021
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Obituary

Dr. Richard P. “Dick” Flannery, 88, of Reading, PA, passed away peacefully at home on March 7, 2021, surrounded by his loving and supportive family after a brief and valiant battle against cancer.

Born at the former St. Joseph’s Hospital in Reading, he was the fifth son of the late D. Paul and Leona (Nally) Flannery. Richard married the love of his life, Lois (Eberhart), on Christmas Eve in 1954. They shared 66 years of marriage and raised a wonderful family together.

As a child, Richard attended Monocacy Elementary School, near the Flannery Homestead in Douglassville. Later, he attended St. Peter’s in Reading for 3rd through 8th grades, then Central Catholic High School, graduating in the Class of 1950. While in high school, Dick was a record-setting miler. When he ran the mile in 4:35.1, the headline in The Reading Eagle stated, “Flannery Runs Fastest Mile in History of Central Catholic.” He had an amateur basketball career that spanned 27 years. A memorable moment in his basketball legacy is when he scored 92 points in a game for the Mt. Penn Pagodas basketball team. Anyone who played with and against Dick knew him as a “gunner” and a downright aggressive player. He never met a shot he didn’t like.

After high school, Dick proudly served in the United States Navy as a First Class Petty Officer during the Korean War. He then attended both Oklahoma A&M and Kutztown State College to earn his Bachelor’s Degree in Education. He completed his Master’s Degree in Education at Temple University and received his Doctor of Education from Nova University (hence his other nickname, “Doc.”) Dick’s career in education began in the Boyertown Area School District as a history teacher and administrator from 1960 to 1974. During the summers, he managed the Boyertown Community Swimming Pool. In 1974, he became Principal of Reading High School, serving as the leader of “The Castle on the Hill” until 1987. He then became the Director of Athletics at Alvernia College and completed his professional career as Principal of Sacred Heart Elementary School from 1993 to 1998.

Dick was an accomplished writer whose articles appeared in The Reading Eagle/Times, The Historical Review of Berks County, Pottstown Mercury, and The Reading Record. He also wrote a weekly award-winning column, Sports Randoms, that appeared in The Boyertown Times for ten years. As his writing indicates, Doc’s life revolved around sports. When he wasn’t playing basketball, he was watching and writing about sports, heading sports clubs, or organizing sporting events. He was also an active member of the Reading Berks Basketball Association. While Assistant Principal at Boyertown High, Dick served as both the cross-country coach and a track coach. He was the Executive Director of the B.C.I.A.A for sixteen years and served as President of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame Berks Chapter for twenty-eight years. More recently, he enjoyed watching his grandchildren play scholastic sports.

In 1982, Doc was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame Berks Chapter. He was subsequently inducted into Alvernia University’s Sports Hall of Fame and the Berks County Basketball Hall of Fame for his lifetime of contributions to sports in the Berks County area. In 2013, he was honored to be named “King of Baseballtown” by the Reading Phillies.

Throughout the years, Doc was a loyal teammate, friend, mentor, and father figure to countless people. He was respected for his dedication to all his friends and endeavors. He was also known for the letters of gratitude and encouragement he would pen to people who touched his life. Extremely proud of his Irish heritage, he was a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians. A devout Catholic, Richard was a member of St. Paul’s RC Church in Reading. He served as the President of the Reading/Berks Holy Name Society and was also a member of the Gethsemane Cemetery Board of Directors from 1987 until 2020.

Doc loved playing Jeopardy each night. He also enjoyed watching movies dealing with historical events. He was a walking encyclopedia of information and famous for his trivia games and questionnaires that focused on current news and historical events.

Richard is survived by his devoted wife, Lois. He is also survived by his children: Colleen, spouse of Michael Paulson; Mark, spouse of Jeffrey Lentz; Matthew, spouse of Amy Joy Flannery; and Melissa, spouse of Eric Moyer. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Bradley Richard Binder, significant other of Stephanie Young; Olivia Flannery Moyer, and Ethan James Moyer. He is also survived by two great-grandchildren, Colin Wolf Binder and Ava Marie Binder. Richard also leaves behind many nieces, nephews, cousins, and cherished friends.

Richard was predeceased by many beloved family members. No doubt, Richard was greeted in Heaven by his beloved son, Martin, who passed away in 1995. Richard is also now surely reunited in heaven with his parents and his four brothers: Robert, Daniel, Francis, and James.

The Flannery family is grateful to all who sent cards, said prayers, provided meals, and shared special thoughts with them during Doc’s final weeks. Although he was known for faithfully attending funerals for family and friends, at this time Richard’s immediate family will conduct a private graveside service this week; however, plans are under way for a fitting celebration of his life in the coming months. The Flannery family wishes to thank the dedicated team members of Tower Health at Home Hospice for their remarkable support of Richard and his family during his final days.

Contributions in Dr. Flannery's name may be made to Olivet Boys and Girls Club of Reading, 1161 Pershing Blvd., Reading, PA 19611 (www.olivetbgc.org/donate/) or Baseballtown Charities, P.O. Box 15050, Reading, PA 19605. Edward J. Kuhn Funeral Home, Inc., West Reading, is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be expressed at www.kuhnfuneralhomes.com.
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Service Details

  • Interment

    Location
    St. Paul Mission Cemetery
    Address
    2130 E. Main Street
    Douglassville, PA 19518
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email

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VL

Vickie Lutz

Posted at 07:42pm
Lois and Family,
Expressing sympathy to all. Dr. Flannery (Doc) was a role model to all who had the pleasure of knowing him. He raised the bar for many and was always there to provide support and assistance when needed. His love, promotion, and contribution to local sports has had a great influence on everyone he came in contact with. All the honors he has received are so well deserving. A great man, and someone that I am grateful that I had the opportunity to know. Vickie Lutz
BF

Brad Di Fulvio

Posted at 10:05pm
Sincere condolences to the entire Flannery family. It was an honor for me to have met this fine man. May he rest in peace!
Brad Di Fulvio
SD

Scot Dapp

Posted at 04:27pm
When I think of the people who have been positive influences in my life, Dick Flannery is high on the list. I admired and respected him as a teacher at Boyertown and enjoyed working for him during my lifeguarding days at the Boyertown pool. Most of all, I'm proud of the friendship we shared. To Mrs. Flannery and family, my thoughts and prayers are with all of you.
Scot Dapp, Bethlehem, PA
JT

Jane Trate

Posted at 12:17pm
No surprise to read all the favorable comments about Dick.
He was a wonderful person and great educator and administrator.
Lois is a beautiful person, a loving wife and caring mother, grandmother and great - grandmother.
I was honored to be in their wedding.
I also knew Dick was an outstanding basketball player as I attended games when he and my husband played on the Tony Z
championship team here in Pottstown.
In much more recent years Dick called me to send him stories from the Pottstown Mercury. He didn't want to bother me, but
I was pleased he asked me to do this.
May all the wonderful comments of so many help Lois and her family in this time of sorrow.
PA

Pat Allwein

Posted at 06:32am
We were so sorry to hear of your loss. Although we never knew him we can see that he must have been a really great individual. You have inherited many of his qualities. Our prayers are with you.
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