Evelyn A. Richards, 86, of Chatfield, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, November 2, 2021, at Chosen Valley Care Center in Chatfield.
Evelyn Ann Hollenbach was born May 7, 1935, in rural Fillmore County, to Ora and Cassie (Kelly) Hollenbach. She attended country school with her sister Mary Jo. While in high school Evelyn worked at The Silver Grille Café. She gained a reputation as a singer performing at local fairs where she was usually paid in silver dollars.
After graduating from Chatfield High School in 1953, she was employed by the Mayo Clinic’s Colonial Hospital in Rochester as a nurse aide.
On January 9, 1954, she married Paul Raymond Richards at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Chatfield. They moved to Ft Benning, Georgia, where Paul was stationed with the 101st Airborne. Later, they lived in Ft Campbell, KY, where their first child was born. By 1971, they had all of their eight children.
An enthusiastic traveler, Evelyn often visited her family across the country, took trips with her children, including Ireland in 1989, and frequently rode with Paul in the semi to near and far locales. The coast of Maine was one of her favorite places.
Flowers and gardening were a love and talent of Evelyn’s. She was a florist, owning her own shop Honeysuckle Rose, in Chatfield in the 1990s. She was a league bowler for decades. She was a long time alto in the church choir, and a member of St Jude’s Division and beautifully decorated the altar with her flowers for many of years. Evelyn was an active member of the VFW Auxiliary Post 6913, serving dinners, selling poppies and marching in many parades. Evelyn is best known for her open heart and good humor, generosity and friendliness. She said, she was happiest being a mom.
Evelyn is survived by 3 daughters; Rose Maria Richards, Regina Coles, Sarah Meserve; 3 sons; Joe, Billy, and Tim Richards; 16 grandchildren and some great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her parents; husband, Paul; sons; Matt and John; brother Louis Hollenbach.
Memorial Mass for Evelyn will be 11 a.m. on Saturday, November 20, 2021, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church with Father McGrath officiating. Visitation will be one hour before the service at the church. Burial will be in the Calvary Cemetery, in Chatfield following the service.
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