Richard R. Bartholomew, 89, of Franklin Township, died Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, in Celtic Healthcare Hospice Inpatient Unit, Geisinger South Wilkes-Barre.
Born in Bethlehem, he was the son of the late Earl and Florence Eroh Bartholomew.
Richard served his country during World War II as a tailgunner in the U.S. Navy and sailed aboard the USS Franklin aircraft carrier doing what he loved the most, flying and sailing.
Richard also had the honor of leading Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s motorcade from Easton to Bethlehem on his motorcycle.
He was a member of the Franklin Township Fire Department, an EMT crew chief and secretary/treasurer of the Franklin-Northmoreland Ambulance Association, and police chief for Franklin Township for more than 50 years. He was also chief of infield security at Pocono Raceway. He started working for Bethlehem Steel after he got out of the service and then spent 32 years at Air Products as a welder and welding supervisor.
Richard loved racing and riding motorcycles and spent more than 13 years accompanying his son at countless racing events. He was a member of Bethlehem Motorcycle Club which maintained and held events at the Freemansburg Hill Climb and was a long time member of the National Rifle Association.
Richard and his companion, Betty Weidner, enjoyed life touring the United States on his motorcycle.
Also preceding him in death were his wife, Kathryn Texter Bartholomew; daughters, Eileen and Lorraine Bartholomew; brother, William Bartholomew and sister, Dorothea Shuman.
Surviving are his son, Roger Bartholomew and wife, Rita, Courtdale; grandchildren, Rachel and Ryan Bartholomew.
Richard will be greatly missed by his family, friends, and the communities in which he once served.
Richard’s final wish was to be cremated and there be no memorial service. He felt he said his goodbyes to his loved ones and their loved ones in preparation of his passing.
Services are provided by Metcalfe-Shaver-Kopcza Funeral Home Inc., 504 Wyoming Ave., Wyoming. There will be no calling hours. A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday in Woodlawn Memorial Park, 1500 Airport Road, Allentown.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Franklin Northmoreland Township Ambulance Association, 329 Orange Road, Dallas, PA 18612.