Richard Kenneth Holbrook 1918-2006
I found these photos at the Lancaster Flea Market in Central Massachusetts. There were two photographs taken by the Empire Studio in Greenfield Mass. matted inside of cardboard frames, identified as “Richard K. Holbrook, Spring 1921.”
When I got home I discovered a hidden treasure. Tucked behind one of the photos was a postcard that had been made from one of the photos.
Richard Kenneth Holbrook was born 21 May 1918 in Greenfield, Massachusetts. His parents were Sela and Bertha Holbrook. In 1920 the young family owned a home at 260 Conway Drive in Greenfield. Sela, born about 1889 in Vermont, was a locomotive fireman for the B. and M. Railroad.
By 1930, the family had moved to Main Street in nearby Montague City. A sister for Richard, named Barbara, had been added to the family about 1925. Sela was now an engineer on the steam railroad.
In 1940, he married Dorothy Bolton who was one year his junior.
During World War II, Richard was inducted into the United States Navy in 1944 and was stationed aboard the USS Arkansas. The battleship Arkansas had an interesting history, serving first in World War I and then again in World War II. During the time of Richard’s service the ship escorted convoys in the Atlantic taking part in the battle at Omaha Beach. It was later transferred to the Pacific providing gunfire support during the Battle of Okinawa. Richard was honorably discharged 3 January 1946, having served as a fire controlman third class. Later in 1946 the ship was used as a target for atomic bomb testing at Bikini Atoll and the ship lies at the bottom of the Bikini Lagoon. Richard and his wife moved to Pauchaug Plains Farm in Hinsdale, New Hampshire after his discharge. He took a job working as an office manager and manager of the parts department at Packard Sales and Service in Greenfield, Massachusetts.
Richard died on 13 August 2006, after 66 years of marriage to Dorothy, living all of their married life on their farm in Hinsdale. She died two years later at the age of 89.