371 Hooker Avenue | Poughkeepsie, New York | 12603
Obituary of Joseph William Rich
Joseph W. Rich, 76, loving father and grandfather, died peacefully on Monday, August 15, 2022, at The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing in Pawling, NY.
Joe was born in Rochester, New York on March 30, 1946 and spent his childhood with his loving parents and two beloved brothers. He attended Greece Olympia High School and Cornell University, later transferring to SUNY Oswego to earn his Bachelor's degree in Education. Ever invested in education, he went on to earn his Master’s degree in Industrial and Labor Relations at Pace University.
Joe moved to the Poughkeepsie, NY area to pursue his passion for teaching, where he proudly served in the social studies department of Arlington High School for over 28 years. There, he formed a host of special life-long friendships. Always dedicated to supporting his colleagues, he was an active union member of the Arlington Teacher’s Association and over the years served in different positions such as President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, helping to negotiate many teacher’s contracts.
A passionate public servant and loyal Democrat, Joe became involved in local politics in the mid 1980s and was elected to serve on the Dutchess County Legislature for the Town of Poughkeepsie. After his retirement from teaching, he was elected and proudly served several terms on the Common Council for the City of Poughkeepsie’s 2nd Ward.
Joe was an active member of Christ Episcopal Church in Poughkeepsie and attended services and events regularly until his dementia made it too difficult for him to travel. At Christ Episcopal, he found a real sense of community, one aligned with his commitment to public service. He participated in a singing group called the Golden Age Singers with many of his fellow church members and together they traveled to local nursing homes to sing and entertain, working to brighten the spirits of others.
Joe was a long-time fan of the NY Yankees and the NY Jets. He was an avid walker and loved taking strolls down by the Hudson River. A lifelong reader and history buff, he especially enjoyed books about the Civil War, US Presidents. He never missed his daily ritual of reading several different newspapers so that he could keep up on current events from a variety of perspectives. He loved Broadway musicals, listening to his vinyl record collection, eating breakfast at the Palace Diner, and pizza at Gino’s Restaurant.
Joe cared deeply for his own daughter, Jennifer, and took great joy in spending time with his grandchildren, Henry and Ellie. He will be remembered and greatly missed for his kind, compassionate and endearing spirit.
Joe is survived by his daughter Jennifer (Rich) Taylor, son-in-law Justin Taylor, grandson Henry Taylor, granddaughter Ellie Josephine Taylor, brother and sister-in-law Thomas and Donna Rich, Clark and Sharon Rich, nieces Debra (Rich) Stauber and Christine (Rich) Biehler, nephews Matthew Rich and Michael Rich. He is predeceased by his parents, Joseph F. Rich and Amy E. (Holcomb) Rich.
The family would like to thank The Manor at Woodside (especially Eva), Vassar Brother’s Medical Center, and The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing in Pawling for their care and compassion.
Thank you for making Joe’s last few years and weeks of life comfortable and happy.
Calling hours will be held at the Timothy P. Doyle Funeral Home, Inc., 371 Hooker Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603, on Thursday, August 18, 2022 from 5-7pm. A funeral service will be held on on Friday, August 19, 2022 at 11am at Christ Episcopal Church, 20 Carroll Street, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601. Inurnment will follow at the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made in Joseph Rich’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association (www.alz.org)