Richard L. Dowsett
Richard L. Dowsett peacefully passed away 1/5/21 after a long battle of chronic kidney failure at the age of 86. He is survived by his three children Michael, Elizabeth and Mark, seven grandchildren and three great grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his wife Nancy, parents Staff and Frances Dowsett, and sister Gayle Hibbard. Dick's wife Nancy passed away at the age of 55 due to diabetic complications. Richard (Dick), or "Mr. Gresham" as he was affectionately known grew up in Gresham attending West Gresham Grade, Gresham Union High and graduated from Oregon State University with a pharmacy degree in 1956 including two terms as president of Kappa Sigma fraternity. He then served three years as a commissioned officer in the US Army running the hospital pharmacy at the Fort Ord base in northern California. Dick then returned to Gresham to join his father Stafford running the local Gresham Rexall Drug store and eventually two additional locations throughout his (40+ year) career. He was a long-time supporting member of the downtown Kiwanis Club, Historical Society and other organizations chartered to grow, promote, and develop the downtown Gresham business community. He also sponsored a variety of annual events including the Mt. Hood Jazz Festival downtown warm-up, the Teddy Bear Parade, and Gresham Little League. His grandfather Arthur Dowsett began the Drug store business at 5 East Powell Drug in 1903 when the downtown streets were still dirt. That same building was renovated in Dick's retirement and has housed the Jazzy Bagel business for the past 20+ years. The Dowsett family served the Gresham area for
three generations with Stafford serving two terms as city mayor and both father and son volunteering for the Gresham Fire Department. The annual Fireman's Picnic was held at the Dowsett Lane homestead for many years promoting a strong community. Dick enjoyed family outings, skiing Mt. Hood, boating on the Columbia River, and working on older cars as a learning hobby mechanic. Due to the current COVID restrictions, the family will have a private celebration of Dick's life after which he will be buried next to his wife Nancy at Forest Lawn Cemetery behind West Gresham Grade school. A public memorial service will be scheduled & announced in the near future via Gresham Memorial Chapel. He will be missed by his family, long time local friends, former employees and beloved customers.