Richard Flynn, 82: An enterprising entrepreneur with a quick wit

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SOUTH PORTLAND — Richard Flynn, 82, died Jan. 13 after a battle with cancer.

He was born on Oct. 9, 1929, the son of Catherine and Edward Flynn.

During high school he worked behind the counter at Taylor’s Drug Store in Thornton Heights where Sally Jackson used to buy candy; they started dating after she turned 16 and they would have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary this year.

After graduating from South Portland High School, Flynn enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was stationed aboard the DD 865 Charlie R. Ware. He worked on the loading docks on Commercial Street for the Emery Waterhouse Company. He later became a salesman, calling on hardware stores and lumber yards. He then worked for Barclay Manufacturing of New York as a regional sales manager.

Always an entrepreneur, he and his wife bought the Larry Rowe Golf Course in South Portland and ran it until 1975 when they sold it to the city. After selling the golf course, they opened Flynn Hardware on Main Street in South Portland and later opened another store on Cottage Road.

After selling the hardware business, Flynn and his wife spent the next 25 years retired in Groveland, Fla., where he played a lot of golf, served on the City Council for many years and finished as vice mayor. During that time the couple spent summers at their cottage on Stanley Pond in Porter.

Flynn was a communicant of The Blessed Sacrament in Clermont, Fla. and St. John the Evangalist and Holy Cross in South Portland.

His friends and family will remember him as a man with a quick wit, a twinkle in his eye and lots of great ideas. He was proud of his Irish heritage, loved all sports, especially the Orlando Magic, Red Sox and the Celtics. Flynn enjoyed public speaking and was a member of Toastmasters International and a past president of United Commercial Travelers.

He was predeceased by his son Peter John Flynn, brothers Hugh F. Flynn and Edward W. Flynn.

He is survived by his loving wife, Sally, of South Portland; daughter Linda Flynn and her partner Robert Brown of Scarborough; son Jeffrey Flynn and his wife Jane of Cape Elizabeth; grandchildren Melissa and her husband William Lathrop, Andrew and his wife Meredith Nixon, Patrick Nixon, Joseph and his wife Emily Flynn, Audrey and her husband Reid Richardson, Tess Flynn and Dylan Flynn; eight great-grandchildren; and brother Robert Flynn of South Portland.

Visiting hours were held on Jan. 16 at Conroy-Tully Crawford followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at St. John the Evangelist Church on Jan. 17. Interment took place in Calvary Cemetery in South Portland.

His family would like to thank the staff at the South Portland Nursing Home for their extraordinary care and his friend Dickey Stetson for his unwavering friendship.

Donations in Flynn’s memory may be made to the South Portland Nursing Home Activities Fund, 42 Anthoine St., South Portland, ME 04106.

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