The Rev. Richard Benedict Markham, whose longtime tenure at St. Mary's Episcopal Church, West Brighton, Staten Island, New York, was marked by his kindness, generosity of heart and deep spirituality, died January 2, 2015 in Staten Island University Hospital. He was 75. Born in Westerleigh, Markham graduated from Curtis High School and earned his bachelor's degree in history from Wagner College, Grymes Hill. He was ordained an Episcopal priest in December 1973 in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Manhattan.
Not long after his ordination, Markham began serving in the U.S. Army for a term of eight years, from 1974 until 1982. A chaplain's assistant and supply sergeant, he was stationed in Virginia, Germany, Okinawa and saw duty in Danang, Vietnam, for a year. After his military stint, he returned to religious work, but also held a secular position with the Army as a civilian employee at the New York Military Entry Processing Command at Fort Hamilton, Brooklyn, until retiring in 1999.
His first parish assignment was at the Church of the Ascension, West Brighton, and he also served as a priest at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Tottenville; St. Mary the Virgin Episcopal Church, Manhattan; St. Mary's, West Brighton; Church of the Redeemer, Brooklyn, and St. Paul's Memorial Episcopal Church, Stapleton. He then returned to St. Mary's in West Brighton, where he spent a total of 18 years, and retired in 2008.
Markham was a 50-year associate of The Society of St. John the Evangelist in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
He never married, but was very close to his brother, Dr. Eugene Markham, his sister-in-law, Johanna (Joan), and their son, his nephew Andrew.
Funeral services were held January 8, with a Requiem Mass in St. Mary's Church. The Rt. Rev. Andrew Dietsche, Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of New York, officiated.