September 27, 2019
Rev. Richard Rhea Schechter met his Heavenly Father on Friday, September 27, 2019 at the age of 88, after living a long life of service to our Lord. He was one who loved life and friends and relatives every day of his life. Everywhere he went he was among friends or was making new ones.
Richard was the beloved husband of Joann Schechter (nee Miller) for 66 years. Loving father of John (Lisa), Wayne (Susan), Bruce (Hemmie), Melissa (deceased), and Cindy (Doug) Setters. Dear grandfather of 14 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren. Richard was youngest of seven siblings, a group that he loved and enjoyed dearly: Bill (Zelma), Bruce (Elva), Dorothy (Ralph), Loren (Wilma), Dale (Olga), Vada (Robert), and Richard was the last living of the seven siblings.
Richard served as pastor at Monroe Presbyterian Church from 1967-1976 and retired from Olivet Presbyterian Church in Evansville, Indiana in 1992. During his 38 years of service, he served a total of five churches. He was as happy in the woods camping or tinkering in his woodshop as he was in the pulpit. He loved to joke around and there was never a dull moment in his presence, meanwhile he was an obsessive tinkerer with cars and tools and always looking for better ways to put things together. His happiest memories were at family reunions in campgrounds in the Colorado Rockies.
Richard was active in many charitable ministries and non-profits. He developed a personal relationship with Millard Fuller, founder of Habitat for Humanity, early in the life of Habitat. As a result, perhaps the strongest impact of Richard’s life came from his role as one of the founders of Habitat for Humanity of Evansville, IN. Earlier, for several years he served as Camp Director at Presbyterian summer camps: Camp Kirkmont in Ohio and Camp Pyoca in Indiana.
Richard was born in Jetmore, Kansas, where he worked on a farm and in his parents’ grocery store in his younger years. He went to Sterling College in Kansas, where he met his future wife, Joann Miller. He loved singing in the Sterling Travelling Choir, and served as their President for two years. Richard then attended the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary to prepare for his life as a minister of the Gospel.
Richard had undergone surgery for a ruptured aortic aneurysm four weeks before his death, therefore he had been surrounded by his children and many grandchildren/great-grandchildren in his final days. Richard passed away in his sleep the night of Sept 27.
Visitation will be held at Monroe Presbyterian Church, 57 Elm St, Monroe, OH 45050 on Saturday, October 19, 2019 from 3 p.m. until time of Memorial Service at 4 p.m. Memorial donations may be made to: Habitat for Humanity of Evansville, 560 E. Diamond Ave., Evansville, IN 47711, or online at https://evansvillehabitat.org/give, and please specify “In Memorial of Richard Schechter.”