Richard E. “Dick” Clark
Richard E. (Dick) Clark died on May 11, 2024 surrounded by his family. Clark was born on July 28, 1938 to Ralph R. Clark Sr. and Gertrude Gibson Clark. His parents, five brothers, and two sisters died before him. He is survived by two sisters, Mary Jane Stewart and Beverly Hawkins, both of Ringgold.
Clark was a graduate of Ringgold High School, South Georgia College (Associate of Arts), Georgia Southern College (B.S. in Education, 1961 and M.Ed., 1968), and West Georgia College (Ed. Specialist in Administration, 1984), and was active in the education of youth for thirty-nine years. Twenty-two of those years were spent serving Ringgold High School as principal.
Clark was a survivor of the last large polio outbreak in 1954 when he was sixteen years old and contracted the disease only six months before the Salk vaccine was put into use in 1955. He spent six months in the famous polio rehabilitation center in Warm Springs, Georgia that was founded by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Mary Jean Smith Clark formerly of Newnan, Georgia, sons Michael (Trina) of Ringgold, Brian (Julianna) of Dalton, daughter Valerie Clark of Ringgold, grandsons Cullen, Miles, and Elijah, granddaughters Audrey and Natalie, great-grandchildren Eady and Clyde Clark and several nieces and nephews.
In addition to a career in education, upon retirement, Clark served as lay pastor of two Walker County Churches, Kensington UMC and Cedar Grove UMC, for sixteen years. He was also a charter member of the original Catoosa County chapter of Gideon’s International, and was the Dalton District United Methodist Director of Lay Speakers, and served many years as president of the Ringgold United Methodist Men. He also served for a period of time as a member of the Georgia Chapter of Discover God’s Call and was president of that organization for three years. He served approximately ten years as a member of the Georgia High School Athletic Association as well.
Memorial contributions may be made to The River Community Church building fund located at 2410 Cleveland Highway, Dalton, Georgia 30721.
Services will be held at The River Community Church on Thursday, May 16, 2024 at 11:00 a.m. with the Rev. Dr. Brian E. Clark officiating. Burial will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday in the Anderson Cemetery of Ringgold. The family will receive friends at Wilson Funeral Homes Wallis ~ Stewart Chapel on Wednesday from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. Online guest book at Arrangements by Wilson Funeral Homes Wallis – Stewart Chapel, Ringgold, Georgia.