Richard “Dick” Ables Koubek, of Bremen, died peacefully at home with his family nearby on Jan. 12, 2024, and was buried Jan. 15 in the orchard of the family farm.
He was born in Eden, N.Y. on Jan. 5, 1942 to Irene and Richard Koubek. He attended high school in Eden, from which he graduated in 1960. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Rochester and a Master in Education from New York University. Dick served in the Peace Corps from 1964-1966, an experience that made a great impression upon him, and where he met his first wife and the mother of his children, Barbara Neumann. From 1966-1968 he worked for the Raytheon Corporation in Saudi Arabia, which provided him with more adventure and storytelling material.
Inspired by Scott and Helen Nearing’s book, “Living the Good Life,” he and Barbara spent time in Alaska rafting the Yukon River, looking for a farmstead, before moving to Maine and purchasing a farm on Duck Puddle Road in Bremen. Dick worked at the Castner School in Damariscotta and was principal of the Bremen Grade School before leaving education to work at Bath Iron Works. On his farm in Bremen, he constructed a post-and-beam barn. He concluded his career as a carpenter working for Chuck Tucker of Washington. In his later years, Dick was married again to Virginia Betts.
Dick loved literature; an avid reader, he needed to be surrounded by books. This fall after years of writing and sourcing photos, he finished “Living Up in the Air,” the tale of his Peace Corps years in Ethiopia and hitchhiking in Africa. He completed a collection of his poetry and the story of building the farm’s barn. Dick was recognized for Excellence in Woodland Stewardship of his land by the Knox and Lincoln County Soil and Water Conservation District for the maintenance of his forest, cutting trails, and harvesting firewood. He loved to paint and was proud of art shows in which he participated.
Dick is survived by two sons, Paul Koubek (Breezy Jackson), of Yosemite, Calif., and David (Jessica) Koubek, of Bremen; his grandchildren, Miriam, Lydia, Noah, Isaiah, and Phoebe Koubek; and his sister, Mary Jane (Don) Shonn, of Akron, N.Y.; as well as his niece, Marion Dorer, of Seattle, Wash.; and nephew, Christopher Shonn, of Brasov, Romania.