ShowSight January 2019

Remembering Dr. Richard Meen


taking the classes with a homebred puppy of mine and remember think- ing that none of the other participants had a clue that their guest instructor was dog show royalty. To them he was the tall, kind gentleman with a quick laugh who offered encouragement and valuable tips as they nervously entered the sport. Dick was a friend for 40-plus years and in all that time I never heard it said he had refused anyone help. As Dick and John launched their judging careers, they were in great demand on this continent as well as around the world; a “power couple” long before that phrase was ever coined. While both had judged Groups at West- minster over the years, Dick received the ultimate compliment when he was invited to officiate for Best in Show in 2016. How proud he looked that night as he put the seven Group winners

through their paces; he was in his ele- ment. By 11 p.m. on Tuesday night everyone was beat and ready to head back to their hotel rooms but Dick still had work to do. There was a press con- ference upstairs at the Garden where reporters were clamoring to meet Dick, Valerie Nunes-Atkinson and her Ger- man Shorthaired Pointer ‘CJ,’ who had been Dick’s choice for Best in Show. I’m sure Dick was ready to take a seat and enjoy a well-earned cocktail, but instead he stood on his feet under the glaring lights and patiently answered question after question from report- ers who knew little about dog shows. Even at that late hour, Dick was the consummate teacher; explaining, with crystal clarity, the purpose of breeding better dogs that could still perform their historic function.

In October of 2018, Dick had the honor of judging his beloved Skye Ter- rier breed at Montgomery County. What a thrill for judge and exhibitors alike. It was one final jewel in a long, star-studded career. In addition to John, Dick is survived by their daughter, Sandra Pierce; son-in- law Dennis Fox; grandsons David and Adam Fox; and godson Drew Reeve- Newson. A celebration of Dick Meen’s life will be held in the spring. Just one week after Dick’s passing, John was judging in Orlando. The best medicine. Between the thousands of remembrances posted on social media, and the many in our sport who got to pay our respects in person that week- end, I’m sure John knows just how much Dick will be missed by us all.

132 • S how S ight M agazine , J anuary 2019

Powered by