‹ Return to Current Obituaries
Send a Sympathy Card
Plant Memorial Trees


Friday March 16th, 2018
4:00pm - 8:00pm

View Details

Funeral Service

Helderberg Evangelical Lutheran Church
Saturday March 17th, 2018

View Details

Richard M. Guilz

Richard M. Guilz, a man devoted to his family and community, died with his loving family by his side at St. Peter's Hospice on Saturday, March 10, 2018. Born in Jamaica, Queens, and raised in Valley Stream, Long Island, he was one of four children of the late Roland F. and Catherine (nee Gallagher) Guilz. The family moved to Sloansville, Schoharie County, when Richard was 17, and there he met his wife to be, Carol Ruth Bradt. They were high school sweethearts, married at 19, and enjoyed a loving and joy filled marriage for 52 years. Richard and Carol lived briefly in Sloansville after marriage, then moved to Altamont for a few years, and then on to East Berne in 1971, where they bought their first home and settled down to raise their two children, Richard Jr, and Lynn. Richard attended Schenectady County Community College for computer programming in 1969, and then started a long career with Colony Liquor Distributors, of Menands, NY, where he advanced to Operations Manager before retiring in 2001. He oversaw many computer upgrades for his company and was the "go-to" guy for many major projects. After retiring, he then went on to work with his son Rich Jr., and his father in law, Edwin J. Bradt, in the family Amsoil business, which he enjoyed immensely, and worked at right up until his passing. He was intelligent, with life experience and wisdom, and was also a diplomat, skills that bode him well as he served as Town Justice for the Town of Berne for close to 23 years, retiring from that role in 2008. Richard had a special love for family and his many close friends. He remained very close to his brothers and sister throughout his life. His grandsons Peter and Jacob, as well as his daughter "Lynnie", were the apple of his eye. He was the shoulder that could be leaned on by many friends and family, and was quick to offer any type of advice, guidance, and assistance to anyone that asked. Like his father Roland, Richard was a very generous man and had an open-door policy for friends and family. Richard and Carol's home was often a gathering place for Lynnie and Rich Jr's friends during their high school years, with lots of "hanging out" and shooting pool type activities for many years in the eighties. Rich and Carol were the ultimate "cool parents" and their driveway was often full of Lynn and young Richard's friend's bicycles, snowmobiles, and cars. Not long after moving to East Berne in 1971, Richard joined the East Berne Volunteer Fire Company, where he immediately made many new friends. Rich was warmly welcomed by his new community and made many lifelong friends through the fire company. In his 45 years of service to EBFC, he served as a line officer for many years, including Chief, and then served as a Commissioner for the Berne Fire District. He was one of the first Emergency Medical Technicians on the "East Berne side of town" and served as an EMT for first the Berne Fire Company Ambulance Squad, and then Helderberg Ambulance. Richard was highly respected among his peers in the fire service and many firefighters were among his closest lifelong friends. Rich continued to wear his pager and respond to the fire station during emergencies, even when he was sick, as his passion for the fire service was strong and he loved the camaraderie of his firefighting brothers and sisters. Firefighting was literally "in his blood", as he followed a long lineage of firefighters, including his father. His son, Rich Jr. followed in his footsteps. A member of the Helderberg Evangelical Lutheran Church, Richard was a lifelong Christian, and his actions in life reflected his faith. He enjoyed many types of sports, including softball, golf, snowmobiling, baseball and football. His favorite teams were the New York Giants and New York Mets. He went on many snowmobiling trips with Rich Jr, John McGivern, and Lance Bradt, among other friends, with many crazy stories and laughs that were talked about for decades. Richard and his wife Carol enjoyed traveling with close friends and family, and took several memorable trips, including two trips to Ireland, and several to Colorado. Richard led a full and virtuous life and was blessed with the love of his family and a very large circle of friends. Richard was a protector and confidante of his daughter Lynn, they had a special and very close relationship. He will be missed by all, especially his beloved grandsons. Richard M. Guilz, Sr, is survived by his loving wife Carol R. (nee Bradt) Guilz, whom he married on August 14, 1965; two loving children, Richard M. Guilz Jr, and his wife Holly, of Altamont, and C. Lynn Hemingway, and her husband Peter of East Berne. He is also survived by one loving sister, Catherine Guilz Fisher (Mike), and two brothers, Roland J. Guilz (Jane), and Gerard Guilz (Patty). Another "brother", cousin Stephen Blessinger of Lindenhurst, NY, was truly a brother to Richard and they loved each other dearly. He is survived too, by his cherished grandchildren, Peter and Jacob, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. Calling hours will be 4-8 pm on Friday, March 16 at the Fredendall Funeral Home in Altamont, NY. Funeral services will be held at 11 am on Saturday, March 17, at the Helderberg Evangelical Lutheran Church in Berne. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the East Berne Volunteer Fire Company, PO Box 32, East Berne, NY, 12059, or the Helderberg Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1728 Helderberg Trail, Berne, NY 12023


With deepest sympathy to the family and friends of Mr. Richard May the Hearer of Prayer (Psalm 83:18) give you strength, courage, and peace in your time of sorrow (Psalm 65:2). And may you always cherish the wonderful and precious memories of time spent with your dear loved one. Your loved one is not only in your memory but will forever be in Gods memory. Please remember God promises us a time we will see our dead loved ones again. (Revelation 21:4) Micah

Micah J Lewis Mar 28 2018 12:00 AM

Debbie Brown Mar 17 2018 12:00 AM

A candle was lit in memory of Richard Guilz

Debbie Brown Mar 17 2018 12:00 AM

Carol, Amanda and I dined with you and Richard one evening after helping Pastor Jeri pack up for her move. I will never forget the love and kindness you both showed us that evening. The world was blessed to have Richard here and I know you will deeply miss him. I am so sorry for your loss. May God's peace be with you in this difficult time.

Debbie Brown Mar 17 2018 12:00 AM

I am very sorry for your loss. I met Rich playing softball with him on the over 50 softball league. He was one of the best players/teammates I've ever had the honor to play with. He will be missed. Dan Donohue

Dan Donohue Mar 17 2018 12:00 AM

To the Guilz family, I'm sorry for your loss. Richard was a great man. He will be missed by many including myself. I will never forget the time he showed me how to ride a snowmobile. Our thoughts and prayers will always be with you. Love Gary & Michele Bradt

Gary & Michele Bradt Mar 16 2018 12:00 AM

We have lost one of the greatest men this world has ever known. Rich will always stay with me in my heart and mind. Rest in peace my friend.

Ken Bunzey Mar 14 2018 12:00 AM

Although, I havent seen Richie since the late 50s early 60s, when I too was almost a son of the Guilz family in Valley Stream, NY. Richies parents Rollie & Kate were very similar to what I have read in the obituary about Richie & Carol having always opened their home to all their childrens friends. As a high schooler, my best friend was Richies oldest brother Rollie. I so much admired the Guilz home and Guilz parents. Im certain I spent more time at the Guilz Valley Stream home than I spent at my own home just a few blocks away. The Guilz parents were so inspirational to me. Having spent so much time in the Guilz home, I knew all the Guilz children so very well. As such, Richie was almost a little brother to me too. Its incredible, now after almost 60 years, how I instantly recognized Richies obituary photo, after not having seen him in so many years that same happy boy Irish smile. And then, learning now how Richies and my life seemed to have paralleled each others throughout the years ever since; programming, systems operations, volunteer firemen, sports and especially that of being so involved in the caring and love of family and friends. That last similiarity, such a beautiful Guilz trait, one that was always so evident in the Guilz Valley Stream home, and has since been carrying on through so many other homes ever since. My love and condolences to all the Guilz, David Zang

David Zang Mar 13 2018 12:00 AM

Our heartfelt sympathy at this time. Offering our thoughts and prayers that God will comfort you and yours and ease the loss you bear.

Loraine and Stephen Farnell Mar 13 2018 12:00 AM

Carol, Richard and Lynn So sorry to read this news. I met Richard quite a few decades ago and enjoyed working with him and being to your homes. He was always so upbeat and it is something passed on to Richard and Lynn, I can only hope to have done as well with my children. Know that I will be there in spirit as i am out of town but know I will offer a prayer.and thanks for knowing him. Peter Mason

PETER MASON Mar 13 2018 12:00 AM

Show More Entries