AUBURN – Richard L. Desjardins, 59, of 5 Novella St., Lewiston, died Wednesday, Jan. 28, at Hospice House of Androscoggin Home Care and Hospice, surrounded by his loving family members and friends.

He was born with muscular dystrophy in Lewiston, on June 17, 1949, son of Bernard and Rita Desjardins. He was educated at St. Peter’s School, graduated from St. Dominic High School in 1967 and from the University of Maine in 1972. For more than 17 years, he worked at Lewiston City Hall, retiring in 1989.

For 20 years since retirement, he, a “people-person,” drove his own van, visiting local nursing homes, bringing smiles and humor to everyone he encountered. For several years, he volunteered with his mom and sister to the Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy telethons.

For one who was not expected to live past his teens, he was deeply grateful for the continual care and support he received from his mother and sister, family, friends and caregivers throughout his lifetime. Their help enabled him to complete his education and bring to fruition his many talents and abilities.

He had a sharp mind particularly in the area of technology. He took pride in taking an active role in designing a home for people with disabilities, doing things “my way” and “fighting the good fight” with eyes fixed on the goal, especially during the last six months of extreme pain. He belonged to St. Joseph’s Church.

He is survived by his sister, caregiver, Diane N. Desjardins; his aunts, Sister Lucille (Therese) Fournier, O.P. of Sabattus and Mrs. Robert (Lucille) Gosselin of Davenport, Iowa; his uncles, Leo and Armand Fournier, both of Lewiston; and several cousins.

He was predeceased by his dad, Bernard Desjardins, October 1981; and his mom, Rita Desjardins October 2008.

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