ROCKPORT — Richard Nightingale (Dick) of Rockport, Maine, passed away on Aug. 6, 2022, after a month-long battle with acute respiratory failure related to COVID-19.

Dick was born on Oct. 1, 1939, in Skowhegan, Maine, and was raised by his adoring grandparents, Bertha and Burton Nightingale. He graduated from Skowhegan High School’s class of 1958. Although he was accepted into the Maine Maritime Academy, he elected instead to pursue a career in real estate. In 1964, he married Mary Richardson of Portland, Maine.

Dick was a real estate visionary and developer throughout Midcoast Maine, building and restoring properties from Belfast to Bath, including Vinalhaven. His many projects spanned from affordable housing apartment complexes to high-end residential developments, as well as commercial properties. He loved spending the summer and fall at his home in Bay Ridge, one of several developments he created, overlooking Chickawaukie Lake and Penobscot Bay. He was a creative thinker and had a unique ability to see the potential in all things real estate, from what was otherwise a complete teardown to a large undeveloped tract of land.

During the height of his greater than 60 year career, it was common for him to mentor at-risk youth at the request of a local high school guidance counselor. He was humble and generous, often making anonymous donations to those in need. He found great joy in sharing his knowledge and talent with others.

In his spare time, Dick became a licensed pilot, enjoyed boating on the waters of Maine and Florida, and took great pleasure in sharing stories with friends and strangers alike. He was a lover of people, children and animals.

He valued hard work, which was evident as he worked until his final days. He was a fearless warrior who fought valiantly to live until the bitter end.

Daughters Beth and Stacy fondly remember numerous early childhood adventures with their dad, during which he would take Stacy to see properties in various states of rehabilitation and play “name that value” with Beth, guessing the fair market values of properties listed throughout Midcoast Maine. Dick and his sons-in-law Steve and Ray greatly enjoyed each other’s company, especially in the context of land development and residential rehab projects during the last years of his life. From age 80 to nearly 83, Dick and Ray helped each other with their respective developments in Gray and Rockport. They could often be found enjoying themselves on excavators. Dick and Steve together completely gutted and rehabbed Beth and Steve’s St. Petersburg, Fla. home. During these projects, both sons-in-law greatly enjoyed their overnight visits filled with stories and conversation with their greatly missed friend and father-in-law.

Grandson Nicholas cherishes memories of learning to drive boats and collecting loose change from Dick’s favorite chair. Marc attributes his lifelong love of flight to his first flying lesson at age 13 with his grandfather. Michael loved his time as a young child riding with his Papa from job-site to job-site, earning his fair share of M&Ms. Sophia cherishes her goodbye ritual of cheek kissing and telling her Papa that he smelled like sugar.

Dick was a devoted husband to Mary, proud father of Beth and Stacy, loving father-in-law and friend to Steve and Ray, and adoring grandfather to Nicholas, Marc, Michael and Sophia. He is and will be forever missed by his family and countless friends.

Dick cherished time with his family. In his later years, his biggest desire was to provide for and enjoy extended family trips to create lifelong memories. His family will be comforted by countless memories of their time together in Maine and Florida.

Dick was predeceased by his siblings Nancy and Marty as well as his best friend, Joe Pellicani, whom he thought of as a brother. He is survived by his wife Mary, of 58 years; daughters, grandchildren; and siblings Michael, Linwood, Jim, and Connie.

Family and friends will gather to celebrate his life at a future date when it is deemed safe to gather. Donations in remembrance of Dick may be made to one of the following charities: Good Flights, which conducts life-saving airlifts and supports ground transport for some of the country’s most at-risk pet populations at https://greatergood.org/good-flights, or Restorative Justice Project Midcoast, which benefits at-risk youth as well as adults at RJP Midcoast.

To share a memory or condolence with the Nightingale family, please visit their Book of Memories at www.bchfh.com. Arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock Street, Rockland.