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Richard Lee Howell

Richard Lee Howell, 84, of Longs passed away quietly at home on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, with his wife Jill, at his side. Born in Meridian, Miss., he led a wonderful, full life and was a true Southern gentleman, the second son of L.M. and Minnie Brooks Howell. He was predeceased by his brother Lew.

Dick lived a full life, tried everything he wanted to and never found any sport he didn’t excel in while playing.  He loved tennis (famous for his “bullet” serve), water skiing, downhill and cross-country skiing, scuba diving, and of course, golf.  He loved golfing and traveling with the Ryder Cup group and was captain in 2006.  Dick was also president of his POA in Long Bay.  His children and many friends had a great time sailing Lake Ontario and Cayuga Lake on the “Great Escape” and later on “Preference”, the two Catalina 30’s he loved.

He was crazy about cars, especially the famous red ’57 Thunderbird convertible and, of course, anything that could fly.  He flew us all in his Cessna 28 “Sugar” over California, Alabama and New York.  He worked on many government contracts for the Air Force among others.  He was inducted into the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum Wall of Fame. He was honored with a brass plaque and a list of achievements, including the Space Program in Huntsville and his involvement with the B-2 Bomber in Owego, N.Y., and numerous other government contracts. He knew many well-known government officials and held the highest security clearance possible, where only the President of the United States was higher.  He needed to request permission whenever he left the country and was required to check in daily even while on vacation.  Dick was a senior vice president of IBM Federal Systems and also retired from Lockheed-Martin as senior vice president.

Dick was a very strong, devout Catholic and is survived by his loving wife of over 60 amazing years, Jill Washburn Howell; son Christopher Howell (Evelyn) of Longs; daughters Tracey Leigh Howell of Hawaii; Virginia Anne Howell of North Myrtle Beach; granddaughters Stephanie O’Callaghan (Justin) and Amanda Power of Pittsburgh; four beautiful great-granddaughters in Australia and her brother Jack Washburn (Yvonne) of Dalton, Mass.; sister-in law Victoria Kane of Syracuse, N.Y.;  his much loved cousin Becky (Wayne) of Long Beach, Miss.; and numerous  nieces and nephews.  A great animal lover, he was partial to his Pembroke Welsh Corgis, having had five of them over the years.

Our heartfelt thanks go to Dr. Santiago for her comfort and empathy.  Many, many thanks to Cynthia Gore who helped so much all the years he was disabled (but talkative) and Kendra Strickland of Heartland for all her great care and expertise.  She is one in a million.

There was a visitation on Monday, Oct. 19, at Lee Funeral Home from 3 to 5 p.m.  A funeral mass was held at Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church in North Myrtle Beach on Tuesday, Oct. 20, at 11 a.m. Honorary pallbearers were his son, Chris Howell, Russ Brown and Ulysses Taylor of Longs and Tom Bridges of Perry, Georgia. 

A guest book is available at www.leefhandcrematory.com.

Lee Funeral Home & Crematory of Little River/North Myrtle Beach served the family.

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