Richard F. Vidmer

December 24, 1944 ~ April 3, 2022 (age 77)


Richard F. Vidmer, 77, of Jeannette died April 3, 2022 at home after a courageous battle with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). He was born on December 24, 1944 in Myrtle Beach, SC, a son of the late Milan and Marian (Fey) Vidmer. A 1963 graduate of Hempfield HS, he went on to achieve a B.A. in 1967, a M.A. in 1972, and a PhD. in 1978 in Political Science from the University of Michigan. In addition to his academic accomplishments, Richard was a gifted football quarterback being named to the All-Pennsylvania and All-American high school teams. Richard took his talents and skills to Ann Arbor where he formed relationships that would last a lifetime with his Michigan teammates and a true love for the University. While setting multiple passing records during his 1966 season with the Wolverines, he led the team to a 6-4 record, just a few plays short of achieving a Big 10 title. His performance during the year resulted in his being awarded Academic All-American honors. Post-grad, Richard worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia,  a Congressional Chief of Staff in Washington, DC, and served Westmoreland County on the Board of Commissioners from 1985 until his disease forced him to retire in 1999. His civic achievements included being Chairman of the Southwestern Pennsylvania Regional Planning Commission, Chairman of the Westmoreland County Board of Commissioners, and recipient of the WCCC Distinguished Humanitarian Award in 1999. In 2005, a study room was dedicated to him at WCCC in recognition for his many years of dedicated advocacy. Richard is survived by his sister Sarah VandeVisse, her husband Jack and their son Rick; brother Gary Vidmer, his wife Jennifer and their children Abigail & Kurt; ex-wife Nancy Derr with whom he continued to share a special friendship as well as many cousins. As a result of his battle with MS, Richard had many caretakers, and his family would like to particularly acknowledge the following for their outstanding help and support: Josh Parsons, Craig Lutska, Bill Hurst, Jessie Morrow, Jessica Hollis, Regina Bobner, Valerie Thomas and Peggy Baker. In accordance with Richard’s wishes, there will be no visitation. A memorial service will be planned for June 18, 2022 at 3:00 PM in Mason-Gelder Funeral Home Inc. 201 N. First St. Jeannette.  Friends are welcome at 2:00 PM.  In lieu of flowers donations can be made to To send online condolences visit

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Memorial Service
June 18, 2022

3:00 PM
Mason-Gelder Funeral Home, Inc.
201 N. First St.
Jeannette, PA 15644
Guaranteed delivery before the Memorial Service begins


National Multiple Sclerosis Society
PO Box #91891, Washington D.C DC 20090
Tel: 1-800-344-4867

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