Stephen Richard Welch, Sr. passed away on December 19, 2018 from complications from a brave, three year battle with cancer. He was 80.
Welch was a lifelong resident of Milford, DE. He was born on February 19, 1938 in Milford to parents Clarence and Hilda Welch. Welch attended school in the Milford District. In high school, he played football and basketball. After graduating from Milford High School in 1956, Welch attended the University of Delaware. He graduated in 1960 with a BA degree in Political Science. While in college, he was in Army ROTC and served as Class President of the Kappa Alpha fraternity UD chapter. After college, Welch joined U.S. Army Intelligence and served at Fort Benning, Georgia and Fort Devon, Massachusetts. He was honorably discharged as a First Lieutenant.
In 1963, Welch co-founded Mohawk Electrical Systems, Inc. with his father Clarence. Mohawk manufactures cable harnesses, wiring assemblies, circuitry boards, electromechanical parts for the oil & gas industry and works with the U.S. Department of Defense. He retired from Mohawk in 2006. His son Scott continues to run the family business.
Welch was an involved and visible member of the Milford community his entire life. In addition to his work with Mohawk, Welch owned or co-owned several local businesses including The Refuge Tavern, Mispillion Realty, Riverview Estates, Country Club Estates and Casablanca Restaurant. In 1974, he ran for public office and he remained a committed and outspoken member of the Republican Party. In retirement, Welch enjoyed regular morning visits to Milford’s Dolce Café where, for several years, he could be seen daily visiting with friends. Welch was a Philadelphia Eagles and Phillies fan. He enjoyed picking blue crabs, watching Fox News, and visiting with his grandchildren.
Welch is survived by his wife of 29 years, Linda Bourgeault Welch, son Stephen R.Welch, Jr., daughter-in-law Kathryn, grandsons Jacob, 13, and Michael, 13, son Scott M. Welch, daughter-in-law Beth, grandson Josh, 12, stepdaughter Christie DiNatale, step son-in-law Vinnie DiNatale and step grandson Vinnie Jr., 12, stepson Adam Davis, sister Martha Welch Clendaniel, brother-in-law George Clendaniel and nieces Kristen Clendaniel Clark and Kelly Clendaniel and former wife Norma Gray Welch. Stephen was preceded in death by infant son Eric Martin Welch.
Hours of visitation will take place at Rogers Funeral Home, Milford, Delaware on Thursday, December 27 from 11:00 am – 1:00 pm. Funeral Service at 1:00 pm. Burial will take place immediately following at Odd Fellows Cemetery, Milford. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to the Milford Memorial Hospital Cancer Center, 21 W Clark Avenue, Milford, DE, 19963.