Obituary: Richard Allen Hayes, 66, formerly of Ridgefield

Richard Allen Hayes, age 66, of Palm Coast, FL and Harwich Port, MA, died peacefully on October 5, 2017 at the Stuart F. Meyer Hospice House in Palm Coast, FL after a hard-fought, 10 month battle with esophageal cancer.

Born in Chicago, IL on December 19, 1950, to Allen Edgar and Darlene Starkey Hayes, Mr. Hayes spent his formative years in Round Lake, IL and Stamford, CT, graduating from Stamford HS (CT) in 1969 and then graduating with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Middlebury College (VT) in 1973. His professional career began at Southeast Banking Corporation in Miami, FL, before earning an MBA from Harvard Business School (MA) in 1979.

He met his wife, Gary, while they were both students at Middlebury College, and they were married in 1975. Mr. Hayes and his wife settled in Ridgefield, CT where they lived for over 25 years raising their family. He retired from General Electric Capital Corporation in Stamford, CT after 25 years of service, including senior management positions in their Retailer Financial Services and Transportation and Industrial Funding groups.

He was devoted to leadership and gave his time and wisdom to the Board of Incorporators of the Ridgefield Community Center and the Board of Managers of CancerCare of Connecticut. He greatly enjoyed being a member of Salem Golf Club in North Salem, NY, and the Harwich Port Tennis Association and the Stone Horse Yacht Club, both in Harwich Port, MA. At Stone Horse, he served on the Board of Governors for many years, with leadership roles including Commodore and Treasurer. Retiring to Palm Coast, FL in 2007, Mr. Hayes joined the Hammock Dunes Club and enjoyed all facets of the club’s activities while also serving on many committees, including a 3-year term on the Board of Governors.

Rick, as he was known by those close to him, was a devoted and loving husband, brother, father, and grandfather. An avid sportsman, his pursuits included accomplishments in golf, skiing, sailing, and tennis. He was captain of his high school and college basketball teams and coached his children in elementary and middle school soccer, baseball, and basketball. Rick took great pride in the accomplishments of his family as well, proudly attending and cheering them on at all of their competitions. Be it as an athlete, coach, or parent, he was a dedicated and tough competitor throughout.

Mr. Hayes is survived by his wife, Gary Wheeler Hayes, his daughter, Sara Hayes Sikes (husband Patrick) of Norwalk, CT, son Richard Allen Hayes, Jr. (wife Regan), of Wilton, CT and 3 grandchildren, Jack and Wyatt (Sara), and Emerson (Richard, Jr.). His siblings include William Charles Hayes (wife Paula) of Littleton, CO, Bradley Jay Hayes (wife Beverly) of Cocoa Beach, FL and sister, Anne Hayes Johannessen (husband Lance) of Grantsville, UT.

Interment will be at Swan Point Cemetery in Providence, RI at the convenience of the family and a celebration of his life will be scheduled at a later date at the Hammock Dunes Club in Palm Coast, FL.

The family requests that donations may be made in Rick’s memory to the Stuart K. Meyer Hospice House, Florida Hospital HospiceCare Foundation, 60 Memorial Medical Parkway, Palm Coast, FL 32164, or to support Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Attn: Emily Carter, 885 Second Ave., 7th Fl., New York, NY 10017. Please indicate that your gift is in memory of Richard A. Hayes.