Dick Darlington remembered

News

A MoRA Founder, Remembered

Richard Stiles Darlington  1943 – 2023

In September, MoRA lost one of its founding members, a renaissance man with strong views and an open mind.

Dick Darlington was foundational. Whatever he chose to spend time on seemed more important, more possible, because of his presence. He hosted some of MoRA’s earliest meetings in his home and inspired our best creativity, our best collaboration. Our fledgling group gathered one evening to explore a ‘proof of concept’ project.
Would MoRA prove its worth by securing a much-needed grocery store? By building a gathering place with public art? By imagining the Monroe Road corridor as a community? The energy from that meeting did all that and more. Dick’s spark helped light that flame. 
Sept 10 concert
Sept 10 concert
At our Thursdays Live concerts, Dick often staffed the MoRA information table and chatted amiably with anyone who cared to stop. With a gleam, he would say, “Well, let me tell you a little story about that.” In the most everyday conversations, he was listening intently. “He would look at you earnestly when you were speaking to him like he was learning something new for the first time,” said one board member.

He was a young 80-year-old with boundless curiosity. He was a technology early-adopter and had about every gadget that offered something a little better, was a little more high-tech, or was just more fun.

Dick’s lifelong passion was to end homelessness. He was a steadfast volunteer at Roof Above and the Lion’s Club. He was a mentor and frequently requested chaperone for his church’s youth group trips.

Sept 10 concert
Sept 10 concert
Sept 10 concert
A former board member said this: “Dick is an example of what the Monroe Road area wants to become. A diverse and inclusive community full of love and life, drawing on the wisdom of all ages.”

He lived fully engaged, curious about everything and devoted to his interests: genealogy, astronomy, his neighborhood poker group, MoRA. While nothing was more important than his family—his kids, grandkids, and his wife Beverly—he loved sharing time with friends. Telling stories, always stories.

Dick Darlington made us better.

 

If you wish to honor Richard Darlington’s memory, please consider a contribution to Roof Above.

Sept 10 concert

Monroe Road Advocates (MoRA) is grassroots group of volunteers from Monroe Road neighborhoods, businesses, nonprofits, and schools. We’re connecting community in the corridor from Lupie’s/7th Street to NC-51.