“He loved horses” is the first thing that family members said when asked what should be in Richard (Rich) Mehler’s obituary. “He had to have a horse and a dog.”
Richard Mehler passed from this life on February 26, 2013, in the same way that he lived his life - on his own terms. He died unexpectedly and peacefully in his sleep, in his home. Rich was born on March 7, 1926 in Erie, PA, to Jack and Ruth (Wittenburg) Mehler. He was the eldest of 4 children, with siblings Ruth, Bette, and Robert (Bob). Their childhood home overlooked the Erie bayfront. Summer days were spent swimming in the shipyards, and evening entertainment was shooting rats at the city dump.
Rich’s love for horses began as a boy. He would ride his bike to Algiers Stables, where his uncle Fritz Wittenburg worked, and exercise the horses. As a young man his life revolved around horse auctions, training/trading horses, and riding in and judging at rodeos. His best event was team roping. The young Rich was a lithe and agile cowboy who could grab a lock of mane and swing up on any horse bareback. His first marriage to Audrey Nelson produced two daughters, Sharon and Paula.
Rich and Helen Blount married in 1966. Rich and Helen lived the rest of their lives in McKean, PA, where they enjoyed the woods and ponds on their property, their dogs and assorted animals, feeding the birds, and their growing family of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Rich retired from Penelec, where he held various field positions. Helen preceded Rich in death, almost 5 years to the date of his death.
Also preceding Rich in death are his parents, sister Ruth White, and brother Bob. He leaves behind his sister Bette Brocious and brother in law Maurice (Bud); daughters Sherri Carten and husband Dan; Paula Clements and husband Ron; stepson John Blount and wife Sue, and stepdaughter Judi Wray. Grandchildren are Stephanie Stafford and husband Brady; Brian Wray and wife Jess, Trisha Parker and husband Daryl, and Nick Clements. Great-grandchildren are Brandon, Brett, and Brooke Stafford; Maggie Mae and Jennie Rose Roberts; Jack and Meagan Parker; and Reagan Wray.
Rich was a hard-headed, sometimes ornery fellow, who will be remembered for being a merciless jokester to those that he liked. His favorite words of advice were to “Follow the 11th Commandment: Mind Your Own G…D… Business”!
A memorial service will be held on Sunday, March 3, 2013 at 3:00 p.m. at the Edinboro Fire Hall. Those who prefer to send a donation in lieu of flowers may make a donation in Rich’s name to the Salvation Army.