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About the Author

Richard A. Ryan, Sr. is a native of Blackstone, Massachusetts. Born in 1935, to James L. Ryan and Esther “Collins” Ryan, he was the youngest of three boys. He attended local schools, graduated from Blackstone High in 1954 and went to work for the Massachusetts Electric Company where he was educated in utility and business management. Richard married a local woman, Lorraine S. Kappelle, of Blackstone, and together they raised five children on a small cattle farm in town. He served eight years in the US Naval Reserves and later went into politics serving as the Trustee of the Blackstone Public Library (replacing his Grandfather who retired from his post after many years of service). Richard also served in town government on the Board of Welfare for seven years and went on to become Selectman for five years. For several years, he was a member of the Lions Club. Shortly after retiring from New England Electric in 1995, Richard was asked to return to the company for two more years to complete a special project.


When he was fully retired, Richard spent much of his time in the woodlands and was an active member of the Uxbridge Rod & Gun Club where he raised pheasants. His favorite hobbies were fishing, hunting, and wildlife photography. In his early sixties, Richard’s eye-sight began to progressively fade due to Macular Degeneration, an untreatable eye disease, forcing him to give up his lifetime hobbies. Ironically, a peculiar experience befell him while hiking in the woodlands one late fall day, thus inspiring him to write his first poem, “The Very Last Flight” at the age of sixty-five. He maintains to this day that his Creator opened a new door and set him on a different path in life by inspiring him through nature’s actions to write poetry.