Richard H. Bogh

ELIOT – Richard H. Bogh, 82, passed away Sept. 28, 2021, following a number of years of declining health. He died at home, surrounded by his loving family.
Richard was born Dec. 22, 1938 in Portland, Maine, the son of Ida Mae Smith Bogh and Richard H. Bogh. He attended local schools and graduated from Deering High School in 1957 and later from the University of Maine in 1962 with a B.A. in Social Work. He was a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, serving as secretary.
He began his social work career in June 1962 with the Maine Department of Human Services. In May of 1963, he was selected to receive an educational leave scholarship from D.H.S. and attended Rutgers University for the next two years, graduating in May,1965, with an MSW degree. He continued his employment with DHS for the next six years, working in staff development, and for the last three years wrote the first State of Maine manual for the new Medicaid program while a member of the Bureau of Medical Care.
In 1971 he was hired as the Director of Social Work at Pineland Center in Pownal, Maine, under the Maine Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation. That was a move that would shape the remainder of his career, choosing to devote himself to working in programs serving people with developmental disabilities and their families. He worked at Pineland Center for the next seventeen years. During that period, he continued as Director of Social Work, but also assumed additional responsibilities such as becoming head of the Qualified Mental Retardation Professional (QMRP) Staff who coordinated the individual treatment plans for all residents of Pineland Center. He was also actively involved in coordinating all admissions to the facility and placements into the community. He served as the facility’s liason person with the Pineland Parents and Friends Association, meeting with their officers to help plan meetings, and attending the general meetings of the entire association.
For a period of several months, he served as acting superintendent of Pineland Center. During the last several years of his employment at Pineland Center, he played a key role in helping the facility come into compliance with a Federal Consent Decree, with the facility meeting the expectations in such areas as quality of programming and human rights issues. As a result, Maine was the first state to meet the federally mandated requirements of a consent decree to upgrade services for people with developmental disabilities.
In October 1987, Richard was hired by the Massachusetts Department of Mental Retardation to join a new program, which focused on the placement of people out of large state institutions into smaller community residences closer to their families. In his capacity in that program, he hired and supervised the QMRP staff, who were responsible for leading the team meetings where all individual treatment plans were developed. During the last several years of his employment with the Massachusetts Department of Mental Retardation, he worked in the Haverhill office developing individual treatment plans for people who lived with their own families or in small,specialized settings. He retired from his work in Massachusetts in February,2000.
A very enjoyable part of Richard’s career was a small private part-time consultation business providing social work consultation to programs in Maine. He started in 1980 and continued for thirty-four years, until the age of 75.
February 9, 1963, Richard married Carolyn Lee Showalter of Rowenna, Pennsylvania. (Ironically he met Carolyn when they worked together at Pineland Center as direct care staff during the summer of 1961 while they were both in college). They had two sons, Leonard Soren and Lee Richard. Although Richard took great pleasure from his career, his wife and family were the center of his universe. When their sons were young, the family enjoyed many special times together, taking vacations or trips, camping, and visiting friends and relatives. Richard really enjoyed coaching his two sons in Little League baseball and watching them participate in other sports such as soccer, track and basketball. He also enjoyed watching his grandchildren grow and develop and seeing how his sons carried out their roles as husbands and fathers.
Richard enjoyed participating in a number of activities in his community. He was an active member of the Eliot Historical Society and the Lions Club, serving in leadership roles in those organizations. He was also a member of the Friends of the William Fogg Library and served as the organization’s treasurer for several years in addition to working on fund-raising activities. He was an active member of the First Congregational Church of Eliot where he was a long-term member of the choir and the Board of Deacons. One of his most enjoyable activities at the church was to organize and participate in the church’s annual talent show. He had great fun singing medleys of known recording artists. (He often included songs dedicated to Carolyn when he sang there or during karaoke sessions. She is fortunate to have several tapes he recorded for her.) Shortly after moving to Eliot from Cape Elizabeth in August of 1984, Richard observed that although Eliot had a community soccer program, the school system offered no way for the children to continue with this sport. He met with several other parents about that, and a proposal was developed, presented, and approved by the MSAD 35 school board; and soccer became a team sport for both boys and girls in the school system in 1985. He later served as president of the Soccer Boosters Association.
Richard was an avid sports fan and participated both as a player and spectator. He enjoyed playing golf, basketball, baseball, and softball. Golf, however, was his favorite sport. Although he did play some competitive golf – playing on the golf team at the University of Maine and a variety of men’s leagues – he most enjoyed the sociability that golf offered. It allowed him the opportunity to meet new people and share time with good friends. His most enjoyable rounds of golf were those he played with his sons. Through the years he won a number of tournaments; he would probably say his favorite win was his 50th class reunion’s tournament.
As he and Carolyn grew older, they enjoyed a number of activities together. Some were organized activities such as a cruise or traveling to resorts in other states or foreign destinations. Of special importance was the trip he and Carolyn made to visit his relatives in Denmark, from where three of his grandparents emigrated as children to later establish families in Maine. He always enjoyed informal socializing with friends. Times spent with his family were of special importance to him and gave him his greatest pleasure.
Richard is survived by his wife of 58 years and their sons Leonard Bogh, his wife Maya and their daughters Ella and Sophia of South Berwick and Lee Bogh, his wife Dawn and their daughters Emilee, Lindsey and Ava of Eliot. He was pre-deceased by his parents Ida and Richard Bogh, Sr.
There are three important things one can take to his grave: his good name, his honor and the way he has loved his family. Without a doubt, Richard will be remembered as a man who excelled in all three categories!
Care of the Bogh family has been entrusted to the J S Pelkey and Son Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers the family has requested donations be made in Richard’s name to the American Cancer Society.

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