Richard C. Westphal

Richard Charles Westphal, of Sun City West, Arizona, passed away Dec. 3, 2022.  He was a prior resident of Rockwell City; Leominster, Massachusetts, and Virginia Beach, Virginia.

Dick was born in North English in 1931 and grew up in Rockwell City, where his parents were educators and the owners of the local grocery store. An enterprising young man, he was always available for a job, anything from peddling snacks on the passenger trains to installing roofs, or lying about his height to de-tassel corn. He excelled on the high school track team, and being a strong academic student, went on to major in chemistry at Buena Vista College in Storm Lake where met his future wife, Donna Fraser. The two were married in Baltimore in 1954 during Dick’s two-year Army enlistment serving as a corporal in the Counter-Intelligence Corps.

They moved to Leominster in 1955, and he began a long career in the plastics industry, working in Research & Development for the Foster-Grant Company. Their four children, Sydney, Alan, Andrew and James, were all born and grew up in Leominster, graduating from the high school and spending summer family vacations in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, on Cape Cod, or car trips to visit family back in the Midwest. Dick’s career would span well over forty years through multiple sales and reorganizations of the company and included a transfer to the Chesapeake plant in Virginia and the move to Virginia Beach in the 1980s. After Donna’s retirement from a teaching career, they moved to Sun City West where they were close to their devoted daughter, Dr. Sydney Westphal, and her saintly husband John Erwin.

In retirement, Dick and Donna enjoyed the national parks, trails, and other attractions of their region.  They regularly entertained family members in their home and traveled frequently for as long as they were able to visit children and grandchildren.

A fine, kind, decent man, Dick is survived by Donna, his wife of 68 years, their four children, two nieces, Lori Summa and Martha Summa-Chadwick, all of their spouses, and five grandchildren.  He was pre-deceased by his parents, Earl and Louise Westphal and his sister Yvonne Summa.


The Graphic-Advocate

The Graphic-Advocate 
121 North Center St.
Lake City, IA 51449
Phone: (641) 456-2585

Mid-America Publishing

This newspaper is part of the Mid-America Publishing Family. Please visit for more information.