THE PATRIOTIC SPEAKER FOR OUR 233rd CELEBRATION
Captain (Ret) Dick Devault
Dick Devault was born in Maine, raised in Maine and educated in Maine. He attended the University of Maine, Gorham in preparation to spend his working life teaching school. That lasted for two years before being interrupted by the draft at which time he joined the naval reserve. In 1966 he reported to active duty as a seaman. In 1968 he completed officer candidate school in Newport and was commissioned as an Ensign. This led to a 32 year naval career, which consisted of assignments to three ships and several shore command tours. Shore tours included assignments at the navy personnel command, the pentagon and on naval reserve staffs in New Orleans. He has several personal awards; the three highest being legions of merit. After completing 32 years of active service he retired in 1998 at the grade of Captain.
His wife Lydia and he knew they would be returning to Bristol having first moved there in 1976 when he was assigned to a Newport ship. They left Bristol in 1978 for a two-year assignment in Washington only to return in 1980 where Lydia remained and their children where educated in Bristol schools until leaving for college. They were able to do this as he obtained tours in Newport or ones that enabled returns to Bristol on a weekly basis. With the kids in college Lydia was able to join him on his final two tours.
Upon retirement he worked briefly for Harper, Ramos and Sheridan real estate before joining the naval reserve association staff in Alexandria, Virginia until leaving that staff recently.
When he began working for the naval reserve association at home in 2004 he was able to join the Fourth of July Committee where he accepted many sub committee assignments prior to serving as parade chairman for the 225thand 226thcelebrations and general chairman for the 227thand 228thcelebrations. He remains active on the committee in a variety of sub-committee responsibilities.
He has been an active member of the Bristol County Elks for over 20 years having served in several officer and committee chairman positions including Exalted Ruler (President), Member of the Board of Directors and Chairman of the Lodge scholarship committee. He also served as Chairman of the RI State Elks association scholarship committee for 10 years where he facilitated delivery of over $800,000 in scholarships to Rhode Island graduating seniors. He remains active in the Elks, the Fourth of July Committee and Chairs the Bristol Personnel board. He is a poll worker and volunteers at the Bristol Motor car show. He is a graduate of the naval war college and received a Master of Arts Degree from Salve Regina University.
He and his wife Lydia will be celebrating their 50thwedding anniversary in August; they have two children, Todd and Amy, 4 grandchildren and two grand dogs.