James  Stephens

James Richard "Dick" Stephens Jr.

Friday, December 14th, 1934 - Sunday, September 8th, 2019
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James Richard “Dick” Stephens, Jr. of Hockessin, went home to our heavenly Father on Sunday, September 8, 2019, after a year long battle with thyroid cancer. That year was filled with many wonderful family memories as they celebrated holidays, two family reunions, the annual “Christmas Tree Trimming” gathering, trips to his beloved cabin, their 65th wedding anniversary, and the birth of three great grandchildren.
In addition to his parents, Dick was preceded in death by his siblings, Joan Shelton (Jim) and Susan Stephens.

Dick is survived by his beloved wife, Shirley Sterner Stephens; his children, Kathy DiSabatino, James “Rick” Stephens (Valerie), Robert “Ted” Stephens (Sherry Jo), John “Dan” Stephens (Sherry Lynn); his 11 grandchildren, Jessica Janssen (Len), Stephanie Gray (Jeff), Sandy August (Mike), Rachel Allen (Brad), Sarah Carter (Matt), Valerie Deptula (Ian), Kira DiSabatino, Eric Stephens (Katherine), Andrew DiSabatino, Michelle Midgley (Bobby), and Lauren Samantha Stephens; and 17 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister, Nancy Gesler (Earl), sister-in-law, Rae Moore, as well as his aunt, several cousins, and many nieces and nephews.

Dick and Shirley realized on their first date that they had been in 1st grade together at Alfred I. DuPont School. Due to his father’s army career, the family moved several times, returning to Wilmington where he attended St. Joseph of the Brandywine School. In 10th grade, they reunited at Alexis I. DuPont High School. Shortly after graduation they married.

Dick was in the Delaware National Guard for approximately 6 ½ years, worked for E.F. Higgins Electrical Contractors as a member of IBEW Local 313 for about 22 years, then began his own electrical contracting company J.R. Stephens, Inc., which he ran with his family until his retirement.

Among Dick’s joys in life were his family, going to his cabin in Potter Co. Pennsylvania, which he and his family built, hunting (especially deer!), snowmobiling, fishing, and his summer home on the Indian River Bay (the “Bay House”).

Relatives and friends are invited to attend the Mass of Christian Burial at St. Mary the Assumption R.C. Church, 7200 Lancaster Pike, Hockessin, DE 19707, on Friday, September 20 at 11:00 am. Friends may call at the church from 10:00-11:00 am. Interment will be private.

The family would like to extend their deepest gratitude to family and friends for their support, love, and prayers during this past year. Especially, the family would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and personal care providers from Delaware Hospice, the Eucharistic Ministers from St. Mary the Assumption, and Fr. Dillingham. Their concern and care for Dick’s physical and spiritual needs were comforting during these difficult times.

In lieu of flowers the family asks donations to be made in Dick’s name to St. Mary the Assumption Church, 7200 Lancaster Pike, Hockessin, DE 19707 or Delaware Hospice, 16 Polly Drummond Shopping Center, Newark, DE 19711.

Krienen-Griffith Funeral Home
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, September 20th, 2019 | 10:00am - 11:00am
    Friday, September 20th, 2019 10:00am - 11:00am
    St. Mary of the Assumption R. C. Church
    Lancaster Pike
    WILMINGTON, DE 19707
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Friday, September 20th, 2019 | 11:00am
    Friday, September 20th, 2019 11:00am
    St. Mary of the Assumption R. C. Church
    Lancaster Pike
    WILMINGTON, DE 19707
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment



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Dan & Sherry Stephens

Posted at 11:25am
Dear Pop -- Your love of the outdoors and nature will continue to live in all of us. This memorial tree is a wonderful way to honor you. We will miss you SO much!
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A memorial tree was planted in the memory of James Stephens — Plant a Tree Now

Donna Massey

Posted at 11:34pm
As a friend of Shirley then meeting you was great. I have a memory of all the family stories and pictures of your family Christmas get togethers. You can tell you were a great dad. I have heard many times of this kid coming over to help do this or that showing how great your kids were raised. How they were taught respect. RIP Dick. I am praying for every ones comfort and peace at this time and always. 🦌🐿🦃
Donna Massey

Lourdes Irizarry

Posted at 04:57pm
Well Dick, Pop as everyone calls you in the Stephens family, I just went through the pics from our wonderful visit with you and Shirley up in Gods Country, and wish I had taken at least one with me in it! Now you are truly in Gods country. How lucky they are to have you there. I know some day we will see each other again, along with many of our loved ones. Until then may you ride up to the highest peak, shine your light down on those of us that can only hope to have a full and joyful life, full of adventures here on earth. Say hi to my dad Eddie if you see him. Rest in Peace.

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