Richard L. Barton

Centre Hall, Pa.

Richard L. Barton passed away peacefully on Aug. 21, 2021, at his home in Centre Hall, Pa.

Dick was a scholar, environmentalist, sage, wit, musician, cyclist, jokester, husband, free spirit, friend, mentor and “dogster.” Born in Terre Haute, Ind., on Feb. 22, 1941, he grew up in Dayton, Ohio, where he was a kid with a bike, a paper route and friends who lasted a lifetime.

Dick earned degrees from the Ohio State University, Ohio University and earned a Ph.D. from the University of Oregon in communications. He had a long and fruitful career at the Pennsylvania State University, culminating with an associate deanship in the College of Communications.

Dick loved Maine and tented there for years before acquiring a cottage. He became an environmentalist, building bridges on hiking paths and serving on the board of the Frenchman Bay Conservancy. He cherished the friendships he found in Maine, loved the sheer beauty of the place, and knew he was fortunate to be able to partake in it.

When not in Maine, he lived in his beloved old farmhouse in Centre Hall, Pa., with his wife, pets, mandolins and guitars. He watched baseball, birds and people — relishing their quirks. He loved playing music with friends and engaging them in incisive conversation. He would be delighted if they chose to give a gift of kindness to our “four-legged” creatures and/or to Mother Nature in his memory.

Dick Barton was a force to be reckoned with — admired, applauded, appreciated and loved. He will be missed unabashedly.

Arrangements are under the care of Koch Funeral Home, State College, Pa. Online condolences may be entered at

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