Dick Ash

Rhody Family Funeral Home

"Successful people are not gifted, they just work hard,

then succeed on purpose."

G.K. Nelson

Dick loved his job, the people he worked with and the workplace. He could have easily been classified as a workaholic and his family often joked that working was his hobby. He lead by example and his strong work ethic has been passed down to countless individuals, including his children and grandchildren.

Richard “Dick” Reginald was born June 21, 1942 in Chesley to Edgar and Thelma (Gowanlock) Ash. He was the second oldest of four children; Julia (1941), Dick, Sheridene “Sherry” (1946) and Brian (1947). The family owned and operated a farm on Lot 19, Concession 11 in Sullivan Township. Dick and his siblings attended S.S. #8 Sullivan before coming to Chesley for high school.

Once out of school, Dick began working at Krug’s Factory in the boiler room. Around this time, while at a dance in Keady, Dick met a young woman by the name of Lillian “Jeanette” Blue. The year was 1962. They dated for three years before marrying on July 30, 1965 at Ascension Anglican Church in Paisley. They took up residence in Chesley and welcomed their daughter, Victoria "Vicky" later that year. Their family grew further with the additions of Richard “Ricky” in 1969 and Reginald “Reggie” in 1970.

While employed at Krugs, Dick completed the requirements and passed the appropriate exams through evening classes at Georgian College to become a Stationary Engineer and moved on to work at Canada Packers in Walkerton where he remained for the next thirty years. He was committed to his job and often on call many weekends. It was not uncommon for Dick to put in 50 + hour work weeks. 

In 1989, Dick and Jeanette moved to Hanover to be closer to their workplaces. When Canada Packers closed, Dick went to work for Conestogo Cold Storage in KW for the next two years, working part-time. He was then convinced to come back closer to home, working for Durham Furniture. He retired for the last time at the age of seventy in 2012.

When not working, Dick enjoyed curling and also loved to dance. Canoeing with family, down the Saugeen River was a favourite pastime. The Ash family also enjoyed camping. The early years were spent camping in Crawford before they became seasonal campers at Whispering Pines for several years. Many lifetime memories and stories were made during these weekends at the trailer.

Dick was a big Nascar fan. His favourite drivers were Harry Gant and Mark Martin. He enjoyed several trips south over the years to take in races with Rick. If he wasn't able to curl in person, he would watch it on TV. Dick was an avid reader, often reading multiple books at the same time. Apparently books needed to be a least 500 pages or the book was no good! His genre of choice was historical fiction with author James A. Mitchener being his favourite.  Dick was also known to love his news, and could often be found taking in the latest world news on CNN or CBC. His love of reading and his obtained knowledge over the years allowed him to be a star player when it came to watching Jeopardy. He was fond of playing pool as well as taking on the kids in a good game of cards, preferably Solo, Euchre, or Cribbage. When it came to music, he enjoyed 50's and 60's country-western and anything bluegrass.

In retirement, Dick often caught up with the daily gossip at Tim Horton's where he would enjoy his coffee with cream. He loved to spend his extra time with grand and great-grandchildren, always taking an interest to what was happening in their lives. The entire Ash family also treasured their time at the cottage. For the past ten years, the ENTIRE family would spend the 3rd week of July together at the cottage in Port Elgin. These weeks together were priceless, and have given their family countless stories and memories to share for years to come.

Sadly, Dick was diagnosed with cancer in May of 2018. He remained positive throughout his illness and lived out his remaining days enjoying time with family and friends. Dick passed away surrounded by his loving family, at Chapman House, Owen Sound, on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 in his 78th year.

Beloved husband of Jeanette (Blue). Loving father of Vicky (Ed) Myers, Rick (Teresa Halpin), all of Chesley and Reg (Jennifer) of London. Dick will be dearly missed by his grandchildren Nickolas, Paige (Ben), Jessica, Craig, Jacob, Nathan and Lilian as well as great-grandchildren Nolan and Nyle. He will be fondly remembered by his sister Julia (Ken) Lobsinger of Owen Sound and brother Brian (Nancy) Ash of R. R. #4 Chesley. Dick was predeceased by his sister Sherry Ash and his parents Edgar and Thelma (Gowanlock) Ash.

An informal, celebration of Dick’s life will be held at the Chesley Legion on Saturday, December 14, 2019 from 2 – 5 p.m. All are welcome.

Memorial donations to the Residential Hospice of Grey-Bruce would be appreciated as expressions of sympathy.

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Helen and Ron Gadke
November 30, 2019
Our deepest sympathy Jeanette and family. Dick will be missed by so many. The coffee gang is not the same without him but we remember his stories and his smile. God bless.
Barb (Patterson) Sinclair
November 29, 2019
May you find comfort in the sharing of your so many good memories; at this most difficult time in the loss of your brother Julia, and your Dad Vicky.
My deepest sympathy to the entire family.
Betty Wilken
November 27, 2019
So sorry to hear about Dick, I remember him (and Jeanette) from the Canada Packers days. Deepest sympathy to the family.
Trish and Bob Tibbo
November 21, 2019
We are so sorry to hear this sad news. Lots of great memories with Dick and all of your family. Praying for comfort as you go through this hard time.
Nancy & Bev Nickel
November 19, 2019
No words can take away your sadness when you lose someone. Wishing you comfort and strength in the days ahead. Treasure your memories they will help you through
Reg and Maria
November 19, 2019
Our deepest condolences
Don and Joyce Smith
November 17, 2019
Deepest sympathy Vicky to you and your family, at this difficult.
Lynne Heffernan
November 17, 2019
Jeanette and family. I’m so sorry for your loss. Dick was a great neighbour and always had time to talk. He loved being with family Every time I look over at his beautiful maple tree over the deck he loved to sit on I will think of him. He was a kind friendly man who will be greatly mmissed. Sending my prayers for his family
Lisa Emke (Smith)
November 16, 2019
So sorry to hear that Cousin Dick passed. I know he was always one of mom's (Muriel) favorite people. She always spoke of him fondly. Our deepest condolences from our part of the family to yours.
Diane Hingsron
November 16, 2019
Dear Vicky & family
I remembered when your dad was diagnosed and how hard it was for you. I felt so bad for you as we had just “been there”. My heart goes out to you and your family. I will think of you during this difficult time. ❤️???? Diane
Leverne and Larry misch
November 16, 2019
Thinking of u vicki and family. So sorry to hear of the padding of your father. Deepest sympathy is expressed to all
Kathleen Hurst Scott
November 16, 2019
VJ3anette, Vicky, Rick and Reg and families I am so very sorry for your loss. My deepest sympathies. Kathleen
Marsha Jackson
November 15, 2019
Dear Rick, Reg & your entire family.

My sincerest condolences on your father's passing.

Please know I am thinking of you all..

Annette Kelsey
November 15, 2019
So sorry for your loss. Keeping you all in my prayers
Jo-Anne Sieffert
November 15, 2019
To Jeanette & Vicky and all your families, my heart goes out to you All.May all your special memories of your Dear Dick and Dad bring you all Comfort and Peace. Hugs Sincerely Jo-Anne Sieffert
Enola MacKinnon
November 15, 2019
My heartfelt condolences to the family. Sending thoughts and prayers for all...

Dianne Ahrens
November 15, 2019
Deepest sympathies to all, it was so nice to have visit with you at the hospice. It is a really good place to spend our last days! Honour and respect!
Dianne Ahrens
November 15, 2019
Deepest sympathies to all, it was so nice to have visit with you at the hospice. It is a really good place to spend our last days! Honour and respect!
Teena Dally (Wilson)
November 15, 2019
Thoughts and Prayers with you all at this time. You all are in our hearts. Ox
Elaine Maluske
November 15, 2019
My deepest sympathy Jeanette and family. He will be missed for sure. We all had great times together when we were young. Fond memories will keep him close.
Jean Gorecki
November 15, 2019
My heart goes out to your whole family. Sending thoughts and prayers your way.
Jayne Tibbo
November 15, 2019
Jeanette, Vicky, Rick, Reg & Families
So sorry to hear about Dick.
I have a lot of fond memories from our younger days that I will cherish forever.
He was a great man and will be missed dearly by all who knew him.
Our deepest sympathy to you all❤️

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Our Testimonials

Well Nathan…due to COVID and everything going on, you did an excellent job and you went above and beyond our expectation. COVID changed a lot of things, but in the end we were very satisfied. Thank you! 

Mary Kaufman

I can think of nothing you could have done to better improve our experience. My grandchildren & I all felt relaxed and so appreciated your quiet, excellent care of our family. You provided dignity & caring – so much appreciated. I somehow knew we were in good hands.

Joan Saunders

We were very pleased with everything. So much positive feedback was received! We felt so very supported and cared for throughout!! We would recommend your funeral home in a heartbeat. We were so happy to travel from Barrie to Chesley to have you take care of our John. Thank you all so much!

Margaret Ellis & Family

Because of COVID-19 we had to do the complete service from home via D.V.D. GREAT!

William Hall

I was amazed that I could smell KFC fries when I first walked in at the visitation. That was so lovely. My husband would have loved it. Thank you again for that! 

Sheila Jacobs

[I] have already told many people what an amazing job you did. My entire family and friends couldn’t agree more! Everything was totally looked after. Things I never would have thought of were either done or brought to my attention. Thank you so much for everything you did. It made a really rough time a little easier to handle. Thank you!

Dianne Veen

“One of a kind” service as well as ongoing support! Beyond [our expectations] and Thank You.

Carol Vallie

I received comments on how informative and interesting the life story was. I know how amazing you are!!! I never stop bragging about you !!!

Lynn Jackson & Family

Nathan and his staff are kind, compassionate and gentle as they guide you through the process of celebrating the life of your loved one. My family has worked with Rhody Funeral Home five times now and each time they have went above and beyond to support us and to honour our loved ones. We will be forever grateful for the professional yet personal way they approach funeral planning. Their sincere empathy and passion for helping families during this difficult time of life is a gift.

Sarah Rogers

It was 100%. I got many comments on how things were handled.

Eugene Perkins

Nothing could have been done to better improve my experience. Nathan, I was more than pleased with everything. Thank you.

Morris Galbraith

I found yourselves very helpful and can’t think of anything negative in our experience with yourselves. We were satisfied [nothing could have been done to better serve us, including] also the travel to Tapleytown (Hamilton) at a low cost where the burial took place.

David Kuiper

Everything was perfect. We had many comments on the service and the little personal touches – that makes it special. Keep up the personal touches!!!

Janice Rapp

Nothing comes to my mind as to what you could have done to improve our experience. My whole family was so pleased, as was I, with every detail. All of the details were so well presented and the full staff were so helpful. In terms of pricing, we received what we asked for ten-fold. Every aspect of Jim’s funeral was so well presented and we would certainly pass this on to others. 

Karen Siegrist

There was nothing that could have been improved. (Except the weather!) The prices were reasonable, especially with the services provided. Thank you so very much. With such a large family, everyone was very pleased on professionalism and presentation.

Terrilea Fidler

I don’t think there is anything more you could have done. Everything was so professionally done, in our experience. I don’t know any place that goes the extra mile to help families accommodate their needs. Nothing could have been improved. We could not have been more satisfied.

Reta Steward

It felt as if you had met and knew John! All of us agreed that John would have approved. Many friends commented on how lovely the service was and how it suited John.

Cathie Stauffer

I really can’t think of anything you could have done to better improve our experience. The only other funeral that I helped arrange was for my father, and at that time I didn’t get the same sense of professionalism or sympathy. Nathan was willing to accept our suggestions, and also to “take the lead” in showing us the next step and what was expected, even to putting details of the funeral into my computer!

Martie Dorland

You did a wonderful job from start to finish. I can’t think of anything you need to improve on. Great job! Helping us to wade through the government forms was great! Saved us a lot of anxiety. We will definitely recommend your funeral home. Wonderful service with kind and caring staff. 

Carol Ryan

I don’t see how you can improve exceptional services. Whatever was necessary on your part to provide was done without question. You eliminated much paperwork and guided us through a painful process with empathy and professionalism. 

Donna Jones-Baldwin

I feel the professional quality of services my family received was second to none.

Kim Moylan

Nathan, I can’t tell you how much your care and support has meant to my whole family. You obviously take great pride in the service you provide. I can’t think of anything you could have done to help us more. You, your mom and Terri-Ann make an excellent team. I had so many compliments on the set up and the service. I sing your praises to everyone who asks. Keep up the fantastic work.

Ruth Stephen and family

It was exceptional how Nathan opened our hearts and minds to give info; then transferred into so many ‘on target’ ways. Also very comforting and understanding to us all. Many comments, impressed, liked all that was done, respectful family-like atmosphere at all times. Especially kind to young members of family as well. Above and totally beyond expectation – Thanks.

Mary Harrison

What one thing could we have done better to improve your experience?
Nothing, we were very happy with services and support provided to our family. Well done. We really appreciated everything that was done for us and how well it was done.

Don MacDermid

Overall I am extremely pleased. Your kind, caring and professional services went above what I expected. All our needs were met satisfactorily and more.

Barbara Aikens

Everything was done so professionally that I don’t think anything else could have been done.

Joy Pitman

You go above and beyond with your services and expertise and compassion.

Judy Charlton

You have succeeded in taking the sadness out of a funeral and made it into a celebration of life and remembrance, which we truly appreciated... Continue doing what you did for us. It was exceptional in every regard.

Marlowe Emke

Our law office often has had many estates involving families who have obtained funeral services from Nathan. He is regarded by my staff and myself as outstanding for his professional, pleasant, and efficient manner. We would highly recommend Rhody Family Funeral Home to anyone.

Ross McLean, McLean Lawyers

Dear Nathan, I cannot say thank you enough for everything you and the rest of the Rhody Family Funeral Home team done for our family with Mom's passing. From the moment you got to Mom's house your professionalism was second to none. You listened and read between the lines yet missed nothing, every little touch was simply perfect, you left nothing undone, your care and compassion to ensure our family made Mom proud one more time, and for that I am forever grateful. You took a very difficult time for us and made it as simple and stress free for us as humanly possible. Nathan you should be very proud of yourself and the rest of your team. You have definitely set the bar very high for any other funeral home in the province to follow. Again thank you

Sincerely, Deb and Doug

Nathan: Thank you so very much for all that you have done for my Mom and my family. Your friendship during this difficult time was truly heartfelt. You made us feel welcome and like a part of your family. The whole time we spoke both at the nursing home and then at your place was a very peaceful experience. Not once were we made to feel like we did not belong there. Your attention to detail in everything that all of us said shows in the story of my Dad’s life and the video. Where there were concerns, you set them all at ease. I so appreciate all that you did for my Mom in helping her take care of cancellations and notifications for my Dad. It set her mind at ease knowing that you were taking care of all of this for her. It set me at ease knowing that she would not have to deal with the frustrations that sometimes come in taking care of these things. You and your family have gone above and beyond in all that you have done for us and I am truly thankful. The warmth and caring went home with us that day. We knew that the right choice had been made in allowing you to take care of my Dad. Again, thank you.


Your services are respectful, accomodating and very professional. An excellent job done. Thank you.

Darren Goodayle

Our aunt & uncle were buried from a different funeral home and we noticed a huge difference in the funeral home services provided. Our mom and dad looked so natural (thank you!) while our aunt and uncle did not. Thank you Nathan, we can't begin to tell you how much we appreciate you and your staff this year!

Ann Legge, Patricia Tibbo & Jane Lembke

All the worlds a stage and all the men and women merely players." Rhody Family Funeral Home takes this and runs with it in an intricate and tasteful manner. The beautiful funeral home sets the stage to reflect the deceased's individual personality. Nathan's artistic ability is only surpassed by his compassion, sincerity and understanding. He goes above and beyond the required duties. His staff is second to none. Darlene Rhody soft spoken and sympathetic and Morris Emke gentlemanly and obliging. Pastor Terri-Ann is like no other with her comforting words of wisdom and encouragement and so compassionate. Her service was nothing short of beautiful. A very heartfelt thank you to Nathan and his staff for making an unpleasant experience bearable. And hats off to Rhody Family funeral home for sending dad -Ross Hammond off in the fashion he deserved. From my mom and my siblings our sincerest gratitude.

Nancy Nickel

Personnel, facilities, advise & support all exceeded our expectations - it helped to communicate details by email. In particular, both Nathan and Terri-Ann did an excellent job! I was surpised at the after service documentation - all details well organized.

Larry Bell

Nathan and staff were kind and helpful throughout the process. They really went above and beyond to make the experience as positive as possible.

Amy Stephen

Everything was great - many great comments made about the story alone on Pearl's life and we sent copies to people who could not attend - a very nice addition.

Family of Pearl Stephen

Our experience was amazing under the circumstances. Your services were perfect. You went above and beyond our expectations. You are very caring, compassionate and professional in your approach. You create a very therapeutic environment.

Elmer Ward

"Dear Nathan, your many caring and creative touches from the notice to the burial in the days following Catharine's (McKeeman) passing meant so much to all of us. You honoured her life in so many meaningful ways. Your compassion and celebration of her life will always be remembered by all those Catharine held dear."

Ian Campbell, Catharine's Brother

“Nathan, you did an absolutely amazing job. People give us compliments about everything from the life story to the beautiful, elaborate displays at the visitation. I tell everyone it was you. All the surprises - the cookies, the recipe cards, the signing picture - all amazing!”

Kim and Alan Grant

“Staff were professional and friendly.”

“Exceptional service.”

Lawrence and Heather Lamarche

“Nathan, you present yourself very well. Facilities were all that could be expected.”

“I would recommend your funeral home to everyone. Nathan’s ability to put you at ease, with a caring attitude is super and very respectful!”

Carol Golem

“We were all very impressed.”

Roberta Godwin

“Dear Nathan - You did a good job. Thank-you for all your help and all the information you obtained for me."

Gloria Albright

“Your sense of humour was a plus! You and your staff clearly have a calling for the work that you do. We all felt that we were in good hands throughout the entire process…. Nathan, thank you for everything. You made things easy for us, as we felt like we were working on Dad’s arrangements with family. We gave Dad a great send off and thank you and your staff for being a part of it.”

Deborah Hart

“Letters cancelling Gov’t services was a great help and was very much appreciated.”

William & Loraine Patterson

“You did everything really well. All needs were met and then some.… We received positive comments on the stationary. Great keep sakes. The book and slideshow were beautiful.”

Elaine King

“We had no concerns- worries, nothing, but confidence in the staff – we knew exactly how everything would happen and when - it was so nice not to have to concern ourselves with anything.”

Rebecca Becker

"I don't think there is anything more you or your staff could do."

Bernice Frook

"No improvement needed. We were pleased with everything."

Susan Taylor

“I would not have changed anything. Thanks very much – Nathan and staff.”

“New renovations are very inviting and warm. All your new cards and books are very heart warming and keepsakes.”

Valerie Long

"Staff were outstanding. Overall, it was great. Everything was perfect."

Susan Laver

“Staff is exceptional!... All needs were met.”

“Service was beyond expectations… Already recommended to various people.”

Steve Thomson

“Could not have been more useful – very satisfied! I would highly recommend Rhody Family. Thank you ever so much for your professionalism and expertise.”

Dave Hillier

“Honestly, you and your staff made this time in my life the best it could be and were extremely helpful, respectful, professional and accommodating to my needs and my family’s needs, especially providing me with a space to feed [my child] if needed. Thank you for everything”

Olivia Strucke

“Everything was perfect; it’s always nice to have lots of options.”

Kevin Dailey

“Thank you for all your empathy, compassion and professionalism. Our family… is very grateful that we chose Rhody Family Funeral Home to look after our loved one.”

Siobhan Bell

“Your services were excellent. Thank you again.”

Debbie Eidt

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