Richard L. Spencer

Richard L. Spencer, 91 years old, passed away on Saturday December 16, 2017 at his winter home in Lake Placid, Florida.

Born August 31, 1926 in Watertown to Leland and Jane Spencer.  He graduated from Dexter High School before entering the United States Navy in 1943.  After Naval service he was a member of Naval Reserve.

Dick was married to Audrey Esford on April 21, 1947 at Dexter United Methodist Church.  They celebrated 69 years of marriage before Audrey’s death on May 21, 2016.  The couple had lived all their married lives in Dexter until moving to Brownville in 2009.

Dick worked at Black Clawson Co. in Watertown for 45 years, retiring as welding shop foreman in 1984.

He was a member of many clubs and organizations, Dexter American Legion, Dexter Masonic Lodge, Dexter Methodist Church, Dexter Fire Dept., Dexter Lions Club, United Methodist Men and Rustic Golf Course.  Dick called square dances for many years for the Country Cousins Dance Club.

Since 1983 he and Audrey had wintered in Lake Placid, Florida.

Dick was a loving father, grandfather and great grandfather.  He loved being with his family and participating in all they did.  He enjoyed his daily jaunts to the Dexter Diner to meet his friends for breakfast.  This was a daily thing he also did in Florida until his passing.  He played the harmonica since his teenage years and participated in weekly jam sessions with other musicians in both Brownville and Lake Placid.

Dick is survived by his two daughters, Cheryl (Tom) Ashley of Alexandria Bay and Lake Placid FL., Diane (Reg) Schweitzer of Chaumont.  Also surviving are 6 grandchildren, Daidre (Bryan) Fanis, Debbie (Brian) Jackson, Jennifer (Tony) Augliano, Terra Graffeo (Chris Parillo), Julie (Jamie) Chaltain, RJ (Hartley) Schweitzer. A Step Grandson Eric (Lori) Ashley, 17 Great Grandchildren: Calob (Brianna), Kyle, Jarod, Nicholas, Hayden. Garrett, Ethan, Victoria, Grayson, Trey, Maggie, Brady, Riley, Edie, Audrey, Hank, Amelia and 2 expected shortly.  He is also survived by his sister Ruth Duffany, brother in law William Esford and several nieces and nephews.

A Memorial service will be held in the spring.

Arrangements are with Johnson Funeral Home, Dexter.  Donations may be made to Alzheimer’s Assoc. 441 Kirkpatrick St. Syracuse, NY 13204 or the Dexter United Methodist Church 210 W. Kirby St. Dexter, NY 13634.  Online condolences may be made to

A memorial service for the late Richard L. Spencer will be held on Saturday March 31st at 1:00 PM at the Dexter United Methodist Church, 210 W. Kirby St. Dexter.

Richard passed away on December 16, 2017 at his winter home in Lake Placid, Florida.

Dick was employed by Black Clawson Company of Watertown for 45 years. A life-long member of Dexter United Methodist Church, Dexter Fire Department, Dexter Masonic Lodge, Dexter American Legion, Rustic Golf Club and former member of the Lions Club.

Dick is survived by daughters, Cheryl (Tom) Ashley of Alexandria Bay and Lake Placid, FL., Diane (Reg) Schweitzer of Chaumont., 7 Grandchildren, 18 Great Grandchildren and 1 Great great grandchild.  He is also survived by his sister, Ruth Duffany, brother in law William Esford and several nieces and nephews.  His wife Audrey predeceased him in 2016.

A celebration of his life will follow the service at the Dexter American Legion 105 E. Bronson St. Dexter.